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Bellator signs former UFC prospect Max Rohskopf

UFC Fight Night: Hubbard v Rohskopf
Max Rohskopf
Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC

Max Rohskopf once again finds himself signed to one of North America’s biggest promotions.

MMA Fighting confirmed with officials that the 27-year-old lightweight has joined the Bellator roster, following an announcement from his management via Instagram.

Currently 7-1 as a pro, Rohskopf made headlines in his lone UFC appearance in June 2020 when he lost to Austin Hubbard at UFC Vegas 3. After the second round of his debut, Rohskopf was heard telling his corner, “I don’t have it,” and he did not get off the stool to compete in Round 3 despite his team encouraging him to continue.

Rohskopf’s decision drew a wide variety of reactions, with UFC President Dana White saying that there was “no shame” in Rohskopf quitting on the stool. UFC fighter and analyst Anthony Smith criticized Rohskopf’s corner for not stopping the fight on his behalf, while Hubbard also found no fault in Rohskopf’s call, even if he wouldn’t have made it himself.

In a subsequent interview with MMA Fighting’s Mike Heck, Rohskopf put the blame solely on his own shoulders.

“I’ve done that for pretty much all my fights,” Rohskopf said. “I’ve been aware of how I perform at my best and that’s by staying calm, understanding what’s happening and stuff like that. I do try and stay as calm as I possibly can, because once I lose that, my Achilles heel, my weakness is what happened on Saturday. I’ve done this my whole life. I’ve self-boycotted myself. Even when I was wrestling in high school, I was the best in the state and ended up getting third because I self-boycotted myself. I was one of the best guys in the country in college, was never an All-American when it counted, because I was telling myself that, for whatever reason, I don’t deserve it.

“That’s exactly what I did in my fight with Austin. S*** got hard, and I looked at my coach and said, ‘I don’t want to be here anymore.’ Not because I didn’t want to be there, but because I didn’t think I deserved to be there.”

Shortly after the fight, Rohskopf was released. He later signed with England’s Cage Warriors promotion and made a successful debut at an event in San Diego in August 2021, dominating Jeff Creighton en route to a first-round finish. He followed that with a unanimous decision win over Jordan Bailey the following October.

Six of Rohskopf’s seven wins have come by way of finish, five by submission.

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