It was only a matter of time until we would see former Cage Warriors Welterweight contender Danny “Hot Chocolate” Roberts in the UFC and we can now confirm he has been signed.
The Liverpool native has recently moved out to the States and has been training with the Blackzilians and will be looking to utilise the knowledge and skills he has amassed from one of the best gyms in the States when he makes his UFC debut.
11-1 Roberts last fought in May 2014 and scored perhaps the biggest win of his career, knocking out European veteran “Judo” Jimmy Wallhead in the first round of their Welterweight bout.
Whilst no opponents have been announced for Roberts UFC debut #WHOATV have taken a look at the current UFC Welterweight landscape and proposed five fighters whom would be all be a difficult challenge to welcome Roberts to the big show.
Nicolas Dalby (14-0 MMA 1-0 UFC)
Well let’s be honest it was almost guaranteed to happen at Cage Warriors before the promotion seized operation for a while and pitted two of the very best Welterweights in Europe against each other. Since leaving Cage Warriors, Dalby scored a split decision win against Elizeu Dos Santos in his UFC debut and really showed his expert grappling to earn him the nod in Brazil. This really is a great stylistic match up and whilst I disprove in seeing Europeans fight each other in the UFC I am very intrigued in how this one would play out should it take place under the UFC banner.
Pascal Krauss (11-2 MMA 2-2 UFC)
Ok so I said I hated seeing Europeans fight in the UFC but this for me is another good welcoming test for Danny Roberts. Krauss is always in exciting fights and has two FOTN bonuses in his four UFC bouts to date and I think that Roberts could really bring out the best in him. Of his eleven wins Krauss holds seven submission wins and would really test Roberts on the ground, which would really give Roberts an opportunity to prove his grappling skills against a high level opponent. Krauss is also coming off of a tough KO loss so will be desperate to get back into the win column.
Brandon Thatch (11-3 MMA 2-2 UFC)
I would love to see Thatch and Roberts in a stand up war and given Thatch’s recent two fight skid, think that he would be a very dangerous fighter to welcome Roberts to the UFC. Thatch has never won a fight by decision with seven TKO/KO’s and four submission wins under his belt. Roberts tends to perform better with an opponent who is willing to stand and strike and Thatch therefore is a prime contender as an opponent for Hot Chocolate. The only thing which may affect this one is the UFC putting in Thatch who only two fights ago headlined a card against a promotional newcomer. So if not his debut it’s definitely a fight I would like to see down the road for Roberts.
Claudio Silva (11-1 MMA 2-0 UFC)
Brazilian Silva has two UFC wins both other British fighters (Brad Scott & Leon Edwards) and would be a good test for Roberts to welcome him to the Octagon. Whilst Silva would be the underdog in the stand-up he would certainly pose a test for Roberts on the ground, with six submission wins all in the first round. Had Silva stayed on the UK domestic scene it would have been undoubtable that these two would of clashed at some stage and so why not put it on the big show and see if Roberts could break the English streak of the Brazilian.
William Macario (7-3 MMA 1-3 UFC)
Macario is in desperate need of a win and with a 1-3 record under a TUF contract he must be fighting for his life every time he steps into the Octagon from now onwards. But one thing you can always expect from Macario is that he will come forward and give it his all each and every time he steps in the cage. I would certainly favour Roberts if this fight was made as I think Macario gets too emotional come fight night, whereas Roberts remains eerily calm at all times even in difficult positions. A good introduction to the UFC for Roberts and a real must win for Macario.