5 Things You Should Know About Anthony Pettis

Photo: Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC (Getty Images)

Ambition brought Anthony Pettis major titles, widespread adoration, and global fame. Can it bring him success in the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s welterweight division? The answer may soon be revealed.

Having competed previously at lightweight and featherweight, Pettis will test his luck at 170 pounds for the first time when he takes on Stephen Thompson in the UFC Fight Night 148 headliner on Saturday at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee. “Showtime” operates out of the Roufusport academy in his native Milwaukee, where he continues to hone his skills under former kickboxing world champion Duke Roufus. Pettis last appeared at UFC 229, where he was the victim of a second-round technical knockout from Tony Ferguson on Oct. 6.

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Anthony Pettis

Photo: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile (Getty Images)

Ahead of Pettis’ clash with Thompson, here are five things you should know about him:

1. His name has been etched into the history books.

Pettis is one of 10 men who have captured the undisputed UFC lightweight championship. Eddie Alvarez, Rafael dos Anos, Jens Pulver, Sean Sherk, B.J. Penn, Frankie Edgar, Benson Henderson, Conor McGregor, and Khabib Nurmagomedov are the others. At 560 days, his reign ranks as the third-longest in the organization’s history behind only Penn (812 days) and Edgar (687 days).

2. He has cashed in on his talents.

The 32-year-old Duke Roufus protégé has laid claim to 10 post-fight performance bonuses during his run in the UFC and World Extreme Cagefighting. The total haul for those 10 bonuses: $395,000.

3. His reputation as a fast starter was established early on in his career.

Pettis stopped each of his first five opponents — Tom Erspamer, Lonny Amdahl, Michael Skinner, George Barrazza, and Mike Lambrecht — inside one round and did so in less than eight minutes combined.

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Anthony Pettis

Photo: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile (Getty Images)

4. Success inside the cage has led to opportunities outside the cage.

The Roufusport star in 2015 became the first mixed martial artist to appear on the Wheaties box. Other athletes who have graced the cover include Babe Didrikson Zaharias (1935), Roy Campanella (1952), Michael Jordan (1988), Babe Ruth (1992), Jackie Robinson (1996), Peyton Manning (2004), Bill Russell (2007), and Stephen Curry (2015). Muhammad Ali was given the honor twice, first in 1999 and again in 2012.

5. He prefers to keep the judges out of the equation.

Pettis has gone the distance nine times in his career and owns a 4-5 mark in those bouts, his victories over Henderson, Jim Miller, Jeremy Stephens and Sherron Leggett offset by losses to Alvarez, dos Anjos, Edson Barboza, Clay Guida, and Bart Palaszewski.

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