17-year-old Raul Rosas Jr. has the chance to shatter a record before he ever touches the UFC Octagon.
When Dana White’s Contender Series alumni Chase Hooper entered the UFC at age 19 in Dec. 2019, he made history by being the youngest fighter ever to be signed by head honcho Dana White. Today, 17-year-old Raul “El Niño Problema” Rosas Jr. announced his DWCS week 9 bout against Mando “El Toro” Gutierrez, set for Sep. 20. If Rosas Jr. (5-0) can pull off a UFC contract-worthy performance against the 25-year-old Gutierrez (7-1), he will make history as the youngest UFC fighter ever.
The undefeated bantamweight teen hails from Santa Rosa, CA, and trains out of 10th Planet Las Vegas. All of Rosas Jr.’s professional MMA bouts have been in Mexico’s UWC promotion, where he has accumulated four submission victories and one knockout, resulting in a perfect finish rate.
Despite standard regulations for underage fighters, the Nevada Athletic Commission grants special permits to those under the age of 18, so long as specific criteria are met: “If the person has not reached 18 years of age, a signed and notarized statement from the person’s parent or legal guardian authorizing the person to engage in unarmed combat as a professional unarmed combatant.”
On Sep. 20 at DWCS week 9, Rosas Jr. will have his shot to make UFC history in the APEX
Though the result could be record-breaking, the juvenile prospect Rosas Jr. will face the most threatening opponent of his career in the 25-year-old Gutierrez, who has more than double the experience in amateur and professional MMA bouts. Like Rosas Jr, Gutierrez is an exceptional grappler, holding six of his seven pro wins by submission.
The final two weeks of DWCS 2022 are on track to be exciting affairs, with a potential record-breaking bout in week 9 and world-renowned prospect Bo Nickal competing against Donovan Beard in week 10.
Dana White’s Contender Series takes place on Tuesday nights from the UFC APEX and can be watched on ESPN+ live. Follow along with FanSided MMA for all your results and highlights.