Bantamweight Joe Murphy will make his Resurrection Fighting Alliance (RFA) debut in the co-main event of RFA 21 taking place on Dec. 5. Knowing that a decisive victory could get the UFC’s attention, Murphy has every intention of making an impact and putting his name on their radar.
In an interview with Fight Corner, Murphy explained he’s prepared for his toughest challenge to date, Bruno Frazatto. Though Frazatto’s resume boasts his solid Brazilian jiu-jitsu credentials, Murphy’s expecting to see someone who is “schooled all around”.
“It’s pretty exciting.” said Murphy. “He has a pretty similar style to what I do. He’s a jiu-jitsu guy, that’s his background. So, it’s going to be pretty interesting to see how we matchup on the ground. I know he’s a little more decorated, but most of the stuff he’s won is in a gi. This isn’t gi jiu-jitsu, so it’s going to be pretty different.”
Five of Murphy’s 7 wins have come by way of submission. With the confidence he has in his grappling, the Cleber Jiu-Jitsu trained athlete won’t shy away from a ground war with Frazatto. Seeing how every fight starts on the feet, Murphy thinks he can outstrike him if the battle becomes a pure standup war.
“I feel great about that. I’ve seen a lot of video on him, I’m sure he’s seen a lot on me. I feel like I can take the upperhand if it’s on the feet and I’m pretty interested to see how we matchup on the ground as well.”
Prior to competing at WSOF 3, the 27-year-old was undefeated. When he met Carson Beebe back in 2013, he lost a controversial decision. WSOF president Ray Sefo even acknowledged that the judges had made a poor decision. Regardless, the loss taught Murphy to avoid allowing his future fights from going to the scorecards when possible.
“I was bummed, definitely bummed,” Murphy said. “I thought I had it and I thought I did everything I could have. It definitely made me able to look back and I learned a lot from it. Up until then, just about all of my fights I was able to finish. Looking back with the decision going the other way on a close fight like that, as we go to higher levels, it’s harder to finish everybody.”
Since suffering the lone loss of his career at WSOF 3, Murphy rebounded with a split decision win over Victor Henry at a regional event. With each new battle, he hopes to improve and set himself apart from the pack. Coming into RFA 21, Murphy will look for every opportunity to nab a highlight reel finish.
“I’m just going to be a little more scrappy than he is. On the ground, he’s submitted most of his guys, just like I have. But, I’m going to be gunning for [the finish] the whole time and we’ll see if he can keep up with my pace.”
Competing at the OC Fair and Event Center in Costa Mesa will make this bout even more special for him since he’s a native of Orange County. Murphy said fighting on his own home turf for his RFA debut is “dream come true.” Not only does he expect all his supporters to come out in full force, he’ll also get to sleep in his own bed and eat pancakes from his favorite restaurant on fight day.
In the co-main event of RFA 21 on Dec. 5, Murphy promises to do “something crazy” to get a stoppage. With the hometown crowd behind him and the AXS TV cameras capturing his every move, Murphy will ultimately look to turn in a show-stopping performance that captures the attention of the audience and hopefully even the UFC brass.
“The RFA’s a nice platform to get to the UFC. A lot of champions, a lot of people who haven’t even had the belt get to go to the UFC. This is the time to show what you can do.”
RFA 21 emanates from the OC Fair and Event Center in Costa Mesa, Ca. on Dec. 5. The entire main card will air on AXS TV beginning at 10:00pm EST. Expected to battle in the main event for the RFA vacant lightweight championship are Mehdi Baghdad and Zach Jussola.