Following a highly successful amateur career, bantamweight Mitch Raposo is set to make his pro debut.
As Raposo puts it, following an undefeated run in the amateurs that culminated in two championships, there was nowhere left for him to go but turn pro.
“I was a Cage Titans and AMMO Fight League amateur champion I went 6-0,” Raposo told MMAWeekly.com. “(I had) really good performances; some people thought it was great, but I hold myself up to really high standards.
“I spent my whole amateur career fighting the best there was, and once there was nobody left to fight or people were turning down fights, I had to turn pro. I have like 30 to 35 rounds of experience under my belt, which is a crazy amount of experience at 20 years old.”
Experience aside, Raposo feels that his maturation physically was the biggest thing that he’ll be bringing with him to the pro ranks that he picked up during his amateur run.
“I’ve put on at least 15lbs since my amateur debut, and I feel like more of an adult right now,” said Raposo. “My killer instinct, my power, I got all that experience out of the way. Moving up a weight class and letting my body fill up, I feel the best I’ve ever felt.
“I feel like people will see the same skillset that I’ve always done, but they’ll see a more violent version of myself. The only questions anybody had was about my finishing ability, but after (my pro debut) nobody is going to have anything to say about that.”
On Saturday in Plymouth, Mass., Raposo (0-0) will make his pro debut against Rob Fuller (0-3) in a Cage Titans 43 main card bantamweight bout.
“He’s kind of a brawler,” Raposo said of Fuller. “He throws bombs.
“I don’t think he’s really bigger than me. I think we weigh the same. He’s a little taller than me and might have the reach, but I think with my speed and footwork on the feet I think I’ll drop him and put him away. If he runs at me like he does other people I’m going to take him down and pound him out.”
When it comes to 2019, Raposo looks to build a solid foundation during his first year as a pro, and set up for big moves either by year’s end or in 2020.
“It’s always fight by fight, but I am a very motivated kid and I’m always in the gym, so I’d like to finish the year at 4-0,” said Raposo. “By the summer of 2020, if I’m not in the UFC already, I don’t see how I’m not on Dana White’s Contender Series.
“That’s the goal for me: get to 4 or 5-0, get on Dana White’s Contender Series, and get into the UFC in 2020.”