Ray Borg is not a household name in mixed martial arts, but that might not be the main reason the 24-year-old fighter has been questioned as a next top contender in the UFC’s flyweight division.
While Borg has won five of his last six Octagon appearances, the New Mexico native has also missed the 125-pound limit in two of his last four bouts. He checked in a 129.5 pounds for a December meeting with Louis Smolka at UFC 207 and 126.75 for a UFC Fight Night 73 contest against Geane Herrera in August 2015. His did, however, make weight without issue prior to a decision victory over Jussier da Silva in March.
Borg, who made his professional debut when he was 19 years old, says that a recent move to Jackson-Wink MMA has helped him refine his approach in that area. “The Tazmexican Devil” began his career training at FIT-NHB in Albuquerque, the home of UFC welterweight Tim Means.
“This is a question that I get a lot, which is expected because I have missed weight twice,” Borg said during a recent media call. “But really, I mean I turned 24, I never came from a superstar camp, so a few of my weight cuts were more of improper weight cutting and honestly just lack of knowledge of how to go about weight cutting, staying low in the offseason. I’ve corrected my mistakes. I’ve done what I’ve had to do to get to that 125-pound limit. I have no doubt in my mind I’m going to make weight easily.”
Borg will square off against Demetrious Johnson in the UFC 215 headliner at Rogers Place in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, on Saturday night. Johnson will be attempting to take sole possession of the record for most consecutive UFC title defenses, a mark he currently shares with Anderson Silva. Any problems on the scale for Borg could put a damper on a potentially historic night for “Mighty Mouse,” but the long-reigning champ doesn’t expect that to be an issue.
“I’m not worried about that. I’m sure he’s going to do his job and make the weight class,” Johnson said. “My job is to go out there and fight. I’m sure he’s going to make it.”
In addition to improving his weight-cutting technique, Borg expects to be a completely different fighter than anything Johnson has seen on tape. Many times, young fighters tend to make significant improvements from one fight to another. Meanwhile, Borg might have a better idea of what to expect from his opponent considering how many fights Johnson has already had in the UFC.
I think what works in my advantage he has a lot of time in the game. He’s got so much film to study. It’s also dangerous for him because every fight I’ve been different,” Borg said. “I’m finally started to come into my own. It’s going to be a big surprise. There’s not much out on me as far as I’ve molded to this day.”