Bellator 246: A Difficult Path Has Led Ras Hylton to His Dream

Ras Hylton Bellator MMA
Ras Hylton Credit: Bellator MMA

1-0 in Bellator after a short notice fight, Hylton looks to prove he deserves a multi-fight deal at Bellator 246.

Ras Hylton realized a dream at Bellator 242. In a short notice offer he gladly accepted, Hylton defeated (in upset fashion) highly touted prospect Rudy Schaffroth. Highly emotional at the post fight presser, Hylton called it a dream to fight for Bellator. Now he has a second chance to have his hand raised with the promotion.

“I’m just really glad to be back so soon,” Hylton told Cageside Press. “With such a limited window with them [Bellator] still being here [Mohegan Sun]. They got somebody looking to earn their stripes, well so am I.”

While Hylton will be fighting for the second time in a month for Bellator, he has not been signed to a multi-fight deal. Fighting Davion Franklin, who is undefeated, Hylton looks to prove that he is worth it with another impressive showing this weekend.

“Just a one fight deal,” Hylton stated. “I’m really hoping this will put the nail in the coffin and get a contract with a little more longevity.”

Hylton, known by many as the “Rasquatch,” describes his background and history in the sport as “a long checkered history.” It was his father that got him into the world of combat sports.

“I started boxing with my dad, he was older when I was growing up,” Hylton told Cageside Press. “When I was 10, he was dealing with complications, wasn’t able to continue training me and my little brother. My brother went into DHHS custody. When I was 13 we moved to Florida,” Hylton continued. “I took training upon myself, my parents didn’t know, lots of street fighting and rough martial arts.”

It was at the young age of 17 that Hylton moved to the Northeast, on his own.

“At 17 I moved up here by myself,” Hylton explained. “At 20 my girlfriend and I started splitting up, I needed something to keep me sane, so I started teaching. I started teaching at martial arts academies. I met Nick Gulliver at a tournament, he told me if I was serious to check out ‘First Class MMA’ and the rest is history.”

Hylton believes his father would have been very happy for him to have more stability. But that isn’t for him, and through every hardship of his career, he has learned from it.

“My dad would have been very happy to have me as a doctor or lawyer with more stability,” said Hylton. It’s just not him. “It is a part of who I am to be involved in this gladiatorial lifestyle. This life is a dream come true.”

As for Bellator 246, Hylton is expecting a lot out of Franklin. Franklin is 1-0 with a first round TKO under his belt. A trainee under Jackson-Wink MMA, Franklin is a highly hyped prospect.

“A strong, athletic fighter, a wrestler. I’m looking to be quick, in and out,” Hylton noted. “This is a wrestler Vs. a striker, I want to drown him in my experience.”

Bellator 246 takes place this Saturday, September 12 at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT. The event airs live on Paramount Network.