UFC 237 winner Ryan Spann hopes 'Lil Nog' knockout buys domestic fight, puts him on the map
So let it be known that UFC light heavyweight Ryan Spann is tired of traveling.
After knocking out Antonio Rogerio Nogueira at UFC 237, Spann said his main goal is to fight somewhere relatively close to his home state of Texas.
“I hear some stuff coming up in the states,” Spann told reporters, including MMA Junkie, after his ESPN-televised win at Jeunesse Arena in Rio de Janeiro. “I’m tired of being on planes for a very long time.”
On the other hand, Spann (16-5 MMA, 2-0 UFC) has gotten to see Brazil twice. He’s also picked up some valuable phrases in Portguese while fighting hometown favorites.
“I know how to say, ‘You’re going to die,'” he said. “Oh, and I can say thank you.”
A stateside fight would mean Spann’s family and friends would have an easier time watching him work. In Brazil, all he could do was tell them to get the ESPN+ app.
Spann doesn’t have any specific opponent in mind when he fights close to home. But he figures he can cash in with such an emphatic finish over a legend like Nogueira (23-9 MMA, 6-6 UFC).
He’s a long way from his first octagon appearance, a knockout loss to Karl Roberson on Dana White’s Contender Series in 2017.
“That was a tough time,” Spann said. “It was a time when a lot of people around me believed in me more than I believed in myself.
“Coach called me the night after that fight, and he was like, ‘The good news is, kid, it was quick.’ I was like, ‘What the (expletive)? How is that good news?’ But we got back together, and we came up with a plan, and we’re executing.”
To hear more from Spann, watch his full post-fight scrum in the video above.