Raphael Assuncao will be competing against fellow top 15 bantamweight fighter Aljamain Sterling this weekend at UFC On Fox 23. Assuncao is looking for a chance to do something he hasn’t done before.
“I’m not looking past anybody, but I am making a long-term plan as far as winning my next fight,” Assuncao told MMA Junkie Radio. “My main goal is to challenge for that belt. I’ve never had a chance. There are guys that fought three or four times for the belt. Some became champs, and some never did. But I never had my chance.”
In order to achieve his goal, Assuncao must first get a victory this weekend.
“I think I’ve seen what he brings to the table,” Assuncao said. “Once I get in the octagon, it changes everything. I’m sure he’s trying his best to get better and train hard, but I think I’ve seen it all. He’s not going to surprise me. I’m not going to be overly cocky about it, but at the end of the day, I think I’ve seen it all. He proposes some dangers, and I’ve got to be watchful for what he brings to the table.”
UFC On Fox 23 takes place on Saturday, January 28 from the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado with Juliana Pena and Valentina Shevchenko headlining.