There just may be a new FIGHT PASS award added to the list after Adam Fugitt did what most would have called “the impossible.”
Heading into LFA 125, 8-2 Solomon Renfro was heading back to his hometown for what was likely his last fight outside of the UFC. Everybody could feel it coming and all he had to do was complete yet another blink of the eye finish over Fugitt and seal the night with yet another viral microphone moment.
The narrative was so strong that Fugitt avoided the social media hype in the entire lead up to it. Always finding himself in the underdog role, this was nothing new to the mammoth underdog.
Being labeled as the “last box to check” isn’t Fugitt’s favorite title, but far more often than not it goes in his favor. LFA 125 was no exception. The boo birds were out in full effect in the Buffalo-area but that was also nothing new for the 33-year-old, who halted the hometown favorite in less than a minute on February 25.
“My first fight in Hawaii, it was like two years ago, I finished my opponent in the second round and I had the fans throwing beer at me and booing me,” Fugitt said. “They had to escort me and my folks out the back.”
The pre-fight hype and the booing fans aren’t necessarily pleasant for Fugitt, but he fully understands it. Taking a fight in opponents’ backyards and winning is never going to make you any friends, but the utter disbelief every time he wins a fight against the hometown hero is what he’s starting to take exception to.
“I don’t mind the underdog thing, whatsoever. Like I said, I’m kind of used to that, but the fact they think that it’s such a shock and a huge upset, that bothers me,” Fugitt said. “I think that’s just the pride I have for myself. Going in there against anybody I feel like I have the shot. I’m that kind of a competitor where I don’t train to go in there and do my best; I train to go in there to win.”
With Vegas odds placing Renfro as the -500 favorite to win, Fugitt acknowledges that, by definition, he’s on pace for Upset of the Year, an award that may as well be named after him with his introduction of the category. Fortunately, with the eyes Renfro brought to this fight, it’s likely that a Fugitt win will no longer be the most shocking thing to happen on a Friday night.
“I’ll accept whatever award is thrown my way and I’ll take it in with welcomed arms, that’s for sure,” Fugitt laughed. “I feel like that’s me finally getting some kind of acknowledgement and, at this point, I’ll take that. I don’t feel like I’ve had many eyes on me since I’ve been in the game and I just want to start getting some of the respect and that acknowledgement, so I guess it has to start somewhere and if it’s the Upset of the Year award, let’s go.”