After earning his 50th career mixed martial arts victory, one would think that journeyman welterweight Brian Ebersole would enjoy some time away from the Octagon.
Instead of resting on his laurels, the 31-year-old MMA vet will look to have his hand raised for the second time in less than a month as Ebersole prepares to take on James Head at this weekend's UFC 149.
Most fighters Ebersole's age would steer clear of fighting in back-to-back bouts will little time to rest and recover, especially considering that his last fight was a three-round affair against a budding young prospect in TJ Waldburger. But much like Ebersole's unorthodox fighting style, the self-proclaimed "Bad Boy" doesn't like to play by the rules.
Ebersole isn't like the other 30-somethings in the sport.
Instead of teetering with a gatekeeper status or slowly sinking into retirement fighting on the regional scene, Ebersole is seriously making a run at something special while in the UFC. His unorthodox striking style and humorous nature have transformed Ebersole into a very endearing and intriguing figure.
Despite this, he will have to fight to keep his name in the spotlight. Any opportunity to get back in the cage will aid Ebersole in climbing the divisional ladder, so booking a pay-per-view card bout on short notice is a virtual must.
Let's face it, nobody expected Ebersole to continue his winning ways when he joined the UFC. But his four straight wins since joining the promotion and his entertaining style have made him into a dangerous veteran in the welterweight division.
A perennial underdog, Ebersole has cartwheel kicked his way into legitimacy as an emerging threat, but will have to keep his streak going if he wants to become more than just a motivational storyline.
Head will be a difficult challenge, as the young welterweight owns big wins over the likes of Papey Abedi and Gerald Harris. However, his relative inexperience when compared to Ebersole's resume will be a major advantage for the "Bad Boy."
What Ebersole brings to the table that people shouldn't discount is his ability to break the norm. Finally finding his footing at a point in his career where most others are in the middle of or past their prime, Ebersole has made a career out of taking the tougher path.
Head's going to be a hard guy to beat, but Ebersole wouldn't have it any other way.
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