UFC on Fox 12 Is Matt Brown's Opportunity in the Spotlight

Raphael GarciaFeatured ColumnistJuly 23, 2014

Matt Brown has a major opportunity in Saturday's main event.
Matt Brown has a major opportunity in Saturday's main event.Jeff Chiu/Associated Press

The sports universe loves an underdog story, and Matt Brown is the UFC’s perfect rendition. One can look at Brown’s personal and athletic life to see multiple examples of how he has come back from near defeat.

The Immortal will step into the cage this Saturday in San Jose, California, to face Robbie Lawler, and his story embodies what makes professional sports so enthralling. Even though he’s played the underdog throughout most of his career, he should not be overlooked in any fashion come main event time at UFC on Fox 12.

Brown brings a story that deserves recognition from all of the major outlets covering this event. Professionally, he was nearly out of the promotion back in 2010 when he dropped three fights in a row, all via second-round submission.

That struggle isn’t even the most difficult test that Brown has had to deal with in his life. Sherdog’s Joseph Santoliquito’s recent piece on Brown’s life chronicles the moments in which the UFC contender was clinically dead after a near-fatal overdose on heroin. 

Many individuals have suffered from such demons in their personal life, but few truly make the best of their opportunities following such a downfall.

Brown’s rise to become an MMA fan favorite has been astounding and exciting to watch.

Brown is riding a seven-fight win streak as he prepares to face Lawler in what UFC President Dana White deemed a No. 1 contender’s contest for the UFC welterweight title, per UFC.com (via SB Nation). Even though Brown has crushed the opposition for the better part of the last two years, he is still widely considered the betting underdog coming into this fight.

Bestfightodds.com (via Cage Potato) has him currently listed at a +180 underdog as compared to a +260 favorite for Lawler. 

Isaac Brekken/Associated Press

While Lawler has had the more prolific second stanza to his MMA career, Brown should not be counted out of this bout. His will has kept him in other contests in which he’s been close to defeat, and that is what makes this fight much more appealing.

Erick Silva had Brown badly hurt very early in their bout at UFC Fight Night this past May. Jordan Mein also got off to a great start against the Immortal at UFC on Fox 7. However, Brown was able to hang on and win by stopping his opponents in the moments to follow.

Lawler has shown the ability to put fighters away, especially when he has them hurt. But the question is whether or not he will be able to do the same with Brown, who tends to hang on even when placed in dire straits.

This dynamic is what makes this fight so anticipated.

If Brown gets hurt early and finds a way to pull out a victory, he will certainly cross over from being a midcard fan favorite to becoming a star in this sport.

The underdog story will always capture the attention of sports fans. Brown embodies that persona for mixed martial arts, as he steps into a major career contest at UFC on Fox 12.

Lawler may be the man everyone is picking to win the bout, but the Immortal has hung on to snatch victory away from opponents in the past.

The fight world should not be surprised if he finds a way to do it again.