5 Things You Might Not Know About Brandon Royval

Brandon Royval has reached a tipping point where the future trajectory of his Ultimate Fighting Championship career could soon be determined.

A Top 5 flyweight at the moment, the 29-year-old Colorado native will try to rebound from back-to-back losses for the first time when he collides with Rogerio Bontorin in a UFC on ESPN 32 showcase this Saturday at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. Royval sports a 2-2 mark inside the Octagon. He last appeared on Aug. 21, when he submitted to a rear-naked choke from Alexandre Pantoja in the second round of their UFC on ESPN 29 pairing. A potent finisher himself, Royval has delivered 11 of his 12 pro victories by knockout, technical knockout or submission.

Ahead of Royval’s pivotal encounter with Bontorin, here are five things you might not know about him:

1. Success was immediate.

Royval made his professional mixed martial arts debut on Aug. 17, 2012—a day after he celebrated his 20th birthday. He put away Sammy Rind with elbows 1:45 into the first round of their encounter under the Kick Down MMA banner in Denver.

2. He climbed to the top of the regional ladder.

“Raw Dawg” remains one of only seven men to hold the Legacy Fighting Alliance flyweight championship. Roberto Sanchez, Maikel Perez, Brandon Moreno, Jimmy Flick, Victor Altamirano and Charles Johnson are the others. Royval laid claim to the 125-pound title in his final LFA appearance before signing with the UFC.

3. He adheres to the iron-sharpens-iron creed.

Royval trains out of the Marc Montoya-fronted Factory X academy in Englewood, Colorado, where he has trained alongside Anthony Smith, Dustin Jacoby, Alexander Hernandez, Chris Camozzi, Chris Gutierrez and a number of other accomplished stablemates.

4. His quiver carries the quick-strike arrow.

Joey Welch with a triangle choke in 51 seconds at Sparta Combat League “Mile High Mayhem” on Aug. 23, 2014, dismissed Angel Hernandez with a triangle choke at Sparta Combat League 53 on Oct. 15, 2016, stopped Jerome Rivera on a technical knockout in 40 seconds at LFA 39 on May 4, 2018 and tapped Nate Williams with an armbar in 23 seconds at LFA 79 on Nov. 22, 2019.

5. He tends to stay close to home.

Royval has fought outside of the continental United States only once, as he dispatched Kai Kara France with a guillotine choke in the second round of their UFC 253 confrontation in the United Arab Emirates in September 2020. In fact, 11 of his 17 professional bouts have taken place in his native Colorado.

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