Each weekend, there is someone in the mixed martial arts world that makes a statement that may get overlooked amongst the casual fans. Instead of looking at UFC, Bellator MMA or Invicta events, The MMA Corner will look around the regional and international scene in search of the weekend’s big winner.

This weekend, our focus is on Sergio Pettis, who defeated Dillard Pegg at Resurrection Fighting Alliance 8 by knockout just 51 seconds into the first round. The win allowed Pettis to be crowned the inaugural RFA flyweight champion, and the scary thing is he is just 19 years old.

You’ve probably heard of Pettis throughout his career. The young up-and-comer has tackled every challenge put in his way, totaling an undefeated professional record of 8-0. This championship will add on to the hype surrounding “The Phenom.”

Under the tutelage of his older brother, Anthony, among other UFC contenders, and head trainer Duke Roufus at the Roufusport camp, Sergio is in the perfect position to become a star in the mixed martial arts world. But we have to remember one thing: Pettis is still young and has a lot of progressing to do before joining Anthony in the UFC.

Could Pettis join the shallow flyweight division in the UFC? Yeah, probably. But the blemish on his record is the fact he has yet to face a tough challenger who will test him.

The Milwaukee native was expected to face MMA veteran Jeff Curran in the main event of RFA 8 on Friday. However, Curran pulled out of the bout for personal reasons, and therefore Pettis missed an opportunity to add to his stock by facing someone who has 50 career fights, as well as the experience of competing inside the Octagon.

If this original match-up between Pettis and Curran would have remained intact, and Pettis would have turned in an impressive performance like he did against Pegg, then the argument for Pettis joining the UFC would have been easier to make. Pettis needs at least one, maybe two, more wins to make the argument valid that he is ready to face UFC competition. And it can’t be against fellow untested prospects. Those wins need to come against proven talent.

Will Pettis get there? Without a doubt, he will. Name recognition alone should keep the UFC’s eyes on him at all times. But it would be good to see him defend his new title a couple times first. In fact, Pettis and Curran should be matched up again. Even with the personal time off, Curran will be back in the gym training before too long, and even Pettis said after the win that he’d like to give Curran an opportunity to fight him. If I’m the RFA matchmaker, I make that fight because it will be beneficial for both men.

Pettis has earned the title of this weekend’s big winner, and if all goes well, he will receive many more honors as his quest to the UFC continues.

Photo: Sergio Pettis (right) stuns Dillard Pegg with a punch (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

About The Author

Corey Adams
Staff Writer

Corey Adams didn't grow up watching mixed martial arts, considering the UFC was just getting started the year he was born, but in his teenage years, witnessed the action and has fallen in love with the sport. Corey was the first to join The MMA Corner staff -- other than founder Josh Davis -- and has been writing for the site ever since. Corey attends Austin Peay State University, where he majors in Communications with a focus on journalism. When he's not covering MMA, Corey is still writing on many sports with both local and campus newspapers. His favorite sports teams are the Atlanta Braves and Denver Broncos. Follow him on Twitter at the link below.