Former UFC Heavyweight Ben Rothwell Signs With Bare Knuckle FC

Former UFC heavyweight contender Ben Rothwell is transitioning to bare-knuckle boxing after agreeing to a deal with Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship (BKFC).

Rothwell was released from the UFC just weeks ago after a long tenure with the promotion. He was scheduled to face Alexander Gustafsson on May 21 before parting ways with the UFC.

A free agent for the first time in a while, Rothwell agreed to a deal with BKFC as he announced during a recent appearance on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani.

“BKFC came with the best offer, made me very excited,” Rothwell said. “I believe that it’s the place for me because I was doing BKFC long before MMA. It’s something that’s part of my life, something my great grandfather was doing; probably not legally, but had a history of it. It’s something that’s in my blood.”

Rothwell’s last UFC fight came against Marcos Rogerio de Lima last November, losing via first-round knockout just seconds into the fight. Before that, he earned a second-round submission of Chris Barnett last May.

During his time in the UFC, Rothwell was a mainstay in the UFC heavyweight title picture. He earned wins over the likes of Josh Barnett, Alistair Overeem, and Stefan Struve in the Octagon.

Rothwell made his UFC debut against Cain Velasquez at UFC 104. He’s looking to become the latest former UFC fighter to find success in BKFC, joining the likes of Mike Perry and Chad Mendes.

A date and opponent for Rothwell’s BKFC debut are expected to be announced within the coming weeks.

How do you think Ben Rothwell will do in bare-knuckle boxing?