5 Things You Should Know About Edson Barboza

Photo: Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC / Contributor (Getty Images)

Longtime Ultimate Fighting Championship lightweight contender Edson Barboza has been known to blur the lines between fantasy and reality, as his highlight reel brims with the spectacular and the sublime.

The dynamic 33-year-old Brazilian will confront former World Series of Fighting champion Justin Gaethje in the UFC on ESPN 2 main event this Saturday at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. Barboza has not fought since he laid waste to Dan Hooker at UFC on Fox 31 in December, his rousing technical knockout putting an end to the first two-fight losing streak of his career. One of the sport’s most ferocious kickers, he owns notable victories over two-time Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez, former UFC lightweight titleholder Anthony Pettis, Beneil Dariush, Paul Felder, and Bobby Green. Barboza has secured more than half (12) of his 20 professional wins by knockout or technical knockout.

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Edson Barboza

Edson Barboza kicks Beneil Dariush. Photo: Buda Mendes/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC (Getty Images)

As Barboza makes final preparations to take on Gaethje in the “City of Brotherly Love,” here are five things you should know about him:

1. He carries a championship pedigree.

Prior to joining the UFC roster in November 2010, Barboza won titles in the Ring of Combat and Renaissance MMA organizations.

2. Only quality opposition has managed to tame him.

The six men who have defeated Barboza—Jamie Varner, Donald Cerrone, Michael Johnson, Tony Ferguson, Khabib Nurmagomedov and Kevin Lee—own a cumulative record of 143-42-1. The equates to a .767 winning percentage.

3. His assault on the record book has already begun.

Barboza ranks first among active UFC lightweights in knockdowns landed (10), fourth in significant strikes landed (909) and seventh in total fight time (3:47:40), according to FightMetric.

Edson Barboza

Edson Barboza punches Dan Hooker. Photo: Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC (Getty Images)

4. He has monetized his violent tendencies.

As one of MMA’s most offensively gifted competitors, it comes as little surprise that Barboza has banked eight post-fight bonuses in the UFC: six for “Fight of the Night,” one for “Knockout of the Night” and one for “Performance of the Night.” The haul for those eight bonuses totaled $500,000.

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5. His success extends beyond the cage.

Barboza owns a 25-3 record as a professional muay thai fighter, with 22 wins by knockout.

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