Roosevelt Roberts impressed in his second Octagon appearance at UFC Fort Lauderdale, dominating the debuting Thomas Gifford.
Roosevelt Roberts is an undefeated prospect at 25-years-old who’s gathered some attention after a successful UFC debut. He went 5-0 to start his career with three knockouts and two guillotines including a win in Bellator. The hot start gave him a chance to compete on the Contender Series, and he took full advantage by winning by second-round rear-naked choke. He got a contract with the UFC and defeated Darrell Horcher in his promotional debut with a brutal first-round standing guillotine choke in November.
Thomas Gifford is an Arkansas native who is making his promotional debut at UFC Fort Lauderdale after 26 professional fights. Currently, Gifford is on a five-fight win streak with three submissions and a knockout. Check out Cageside Press’ interview with Gifford here.
Expectations were high of Roberts, coming in as a -450 favorite. He delivered in the opening round, quashing any pressure from the underdog before taking him down to the canvas and working on a submission attempt.
Despite Gifford’s best attempts to scramble and make the fight ugly, Roberts dominated with solid ground and pound for the remainder of the round, making light work of any slight troubles and adversities that came his way.
The Floridian-born fighter started round two with a sweet striking display, tagging his opponent on numerous occasions. The fight took to the floor again when Gifford’s seemingly secure guillotine slipped and the pair fell to the canvas. Roberts would remain on top, pushing Gifford against the cage and claiming another round.
Gifford would do little other than frustrate his opponent in the third and final round, seeing the favorite cruise to another victory and to a perfect 8-0 record.
This was the first instance in which the 25-year-old prospect had gone the full distance in his professional MMA career.
Roosevelt Roberts def. Thomas Gifford by Unanimous Decision (30-27 x3)