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Anthony Pettis has alternated wins and losses in his last six fights, yet still finds himself ranked inside the Top 10 at 155. However, the former Ultimate Fighting Championship lightweight titleholder will move up to welterweight in order to face Stephen Thompson in what should be a highly-technical striking matchup. “Showtime” will give up a size advantage when they collide at UFC Fight Night 148 this Saturday in Nashville, Tennessee.
This could be a new start for the talented fighter, who has a penchant for pulling off spectacular victories. For more proof, check out these career-defining numbers.
5: Years old when he started training in taekwondo and boxing. He stuck with both disciplines as he grew older. Especially taekwondo, where he achieved his third-degree black belt before he started training mixed martial arts at Roufusport once he turned 18.
8: Victories without a defeat prior to getting signed by World Extreme Cagefighting. Pettis fought at Gateway Fighting Series, where he captured the lightweight championship and defended it once before moving up to welterweight in his final bout for the promotion.
109: Seconds needed to stop Mike Campbell in his WEC debut. Pettis submitted his opponent by triangle choke in the first round of their WEC 41 encounter.
6: Fights in WEC, with a record of 5-1. Aside from Campbell, he also defeated Danny Castillo, Alex Karalexis, Shane Roller and Benson Henderson. The only person to best him was Bart Palaszewski in what was a hotly-contested split decision.
42: Significant strikes as opposed to Henderson’s 38 in their contest for the WEC lightweight title. It was in this thrilling bout where Pettis landed his infamous kick off of the cage. After five rounds, “Showtime” took both the victory and the belt via unanimous decision.
3: Wins in the UFC before meeting Henderson again. Although this time it was for the promotion’s lightweight strap. After dropping his promotional debut to Clay Guida, Pettis mounted three impressive victories at the expense of Jeremy Stephens, Joe Lauzon and Donald Cerrone. During his rematch with “Smooth,” the Roufusport veteran made sure to not go the whole stretch and he finished the fight with a slick armbar inside the first stanza.
2: Rounds needed to defeat Gilbert Melendez in his first title defense. Pettis won by guillotine choke and earned his first Performance of the Night bonus within the UFC.
7: Post-fight bonuses inside the UFC. Pettis has garnered one Submission of the Night (Henderson), two Knockout of the Night (Lauzon and Cerrone), two Performance of the Night (Melendez and Michael Chiesa) and two Fight of the Night (Dustin Poirier and Tony Ferguson) bonuses.
80: Significant strikes is his highest output in a single UFC bout. He did it against Jim Miller at UFC 213 and won by unanimous decision after three rounds of action. Conversely, his foe could only land 48.
12: Seconds is his fastest finish to date. It happened early in his career when he submitted Lonny Amdahl at GFS: Rumble in the Cage.
4: Fights that ended in under one minute. Aside from Amdahl, his victims were Tom Erspamer (0:24), Michael Skinner (0:36) and Gabe Walbridge (0:56).