UFC on FOX 15: George Sullivan Reflects on KO Win, Says MMA’s “Blowing Up” in New Jersey
By Kelsey Mowatt
George Sullivan made his way up the pro ranks by fighting for Northeast promotions like Ring of Combat and Cage Fury Fighting Championship, but the welterweight has a special milestone set for April 18th. On that night, Sullivan will battle Tim Means at UFC on FOX 15, which will go down in his home state of New Jersey.
“Oh yeah. Cage Fury did a great job with putting cameras in my face, and making me feel like a star, but the UFC’s a bigger level. Obviously everybody knows that. ” Sullivan said on a recent episode of Full Contact Fighter Radio, while discussing his upcoming fight in Newark. “But to work in Prudential Center is crazy. It’s an honor.”
Sullivan won’t be the only fighter from the region that night, however, as New York and New Jersey athletes like Jim Miller, Aljamain Sterling, and Gian Villante are scheduled to compete.
“Yeah, no, it’s crazy man. New Jersey’s blowing up too,” said the 34 year-old Sullivan, who trains with UFC vet and renowned grappler, Kurt Pellegrino. “I feel like everyone who went to Cage Fury and was a champion got in. I think the East Coast has some tough fighters man, and we’re just starting to blow up.”
Originally, Sullivan was scheduled to fight Kenny Robertson at the event, but recently the promotion announced that the welterweight had withdrawn due to an injury. Now, Sullivan has been booked to take on Means (23-6-1), who has won three straight bouts. Most recently, the New Mexico welterweight stopped Dhiego Lima in the first round, which took place at UFC 184 in February.
Sullivan (16-3), meanwhile, is coming off a memorable, knockout win over Igor Araujo in September, which took place in Brasilia, Brazil. The bout was Sullivan’s second in the UFC, as he made his debut in January, 2014, and earned a decision victory over Mike Rhodes.
“Oh yeah, definitely, one hundred percent,” said Sullivan, when asked if he received more attention from fans and the media, following his stoppage victory over Araujo. “When I took the fight with Mike Rhodes, being sick I didn’t get to perform too well. So the critics weren’t too happy with me, but I fought with the flue, and who’s not going to take a fight in the UFC? I got sick as soon as I got there. ”
“I was healthy for Brazil and I think it showed,” added the former CFFC welterweight champion, who spoke to FCF prior to Robertson’s withdrawal. “I out punched him by like ninety-nine percent, and knocked him unconscious, so I think that if God willing, everything goes my way and we win, I think this will put me up there, give me the recognition that I deserve.”
UFC on FOX 15 will be headlined by a middleweight fight between contenders Lyoto Machida and Luke Rockhold.
The co-main event will also feature two of the promotion’s top 185’ers, as Yoel Romero will take on “Jacare” Souza.