Humanizing Athletes: UFC Fighter Daniel Rodriguez’s Favorite Things

UFC Fighter Daniel Rodriguez (14-2)

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – AUGUST 22: Daniel Rodriguez reacts after his knockout victory over Dwight Grant in their welterweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on August 22, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

MMA fighters are savages. They are the best athletes on planet earth, and — as human beings — have an extraordinarily wide-ranging set of interests. Who are they as people? What makes them tick? What does each athlete have in common with the fans that cheer them on? This series fills in those blanks and gets to the heart of the matter while exploring what makes your favorite fighters who they are.

Daniel “D-Rod” Rodriguez is one of the best prospects in the UFC’s welterweight division and is on his way to becoming a contender. In his 14 wins, he has only been to the judge’s scorecards three times. All the rest of his wins have been finishes- seven knockouts and four submissions.

“D-Rod” went 8-1 on the regional scene, mostly fighting in Combate, before he earned a spot on season three of Dana White’s Contender Series. He fought Rico Farrington and defeated him via unanimous decision. While he did not receive a UFC contract that night, Rodriguez would make his UFC debut seven months later on short notice.

Rodriguez would burst on the UFC scene by upsetting Tim Means in his hometown. He submitted him in the second round and earned a $50,000 Performance of the Night check.

Rodriguez fought four times in 2020, going 3-1. The first three fights all took place in seven months. He would lose a razor-thin decision to Nicholas Dalby to ruin his perfect year. However, “D-Rod” did have a memorable one-round fight with Dwight Grant and if you haven’t seen it, watch it.

Rodriguez is coming off a near-perfect performance over Mike Perry at UFC on ABC: Vettori vs. Holland. He beat down Perry for three rounds to earn a unanimous decision.

Rodriguez was supposed to fight Abubakar Nurmagomedov on July 17, 2021, at UFC on ESPN: Makhachev vs. Moisés but an injury to Nurmagomedov forced him to withdraw. Thankfully, Rodriguez is still fighting, and he faces UFC newcomer Preston Parsons.

Here is a list of UFC Fighter Daniel Rodriguez’s favorite things

  • Favorite food – Steak – medium rare
  • Favorite drink – Beer
  • Favorite color – Red
  • Favorite all-time fight to watch – MMA: Chuck Liddell vs. Wanderlei Silva Boxing: Micky Ward vs. Arturo Gatti Trilogy
  • Favorite knockout – Joaquin Buckley vs. Impa Kasanganay
  • Favorite of your own fights – My fight against Mike Perry

“It was my biggest test, you know. The fact that I went out there when everybody expected it to be like a crazy war and just, you know, outclassed him in every way. It was a great performance also, I experienced a lot of things leading up, you know, a few ups and downs. I tore my Pec and still fought,” Rodiguez said.

  • Favorite sport to watch other than MMA – Basketball
  • Favorite submission to practice – Whatever I need to work on
  • Favorite athlete – Lebron
  • Favorite movie – Any Marvel movie. I really enjoy them all
  • Favorite TV show – Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives
  • Favorite song – Walk Em Down by NLE Choppa feat. Roddy Ricch
  • Favorite band or musician – Too many to choose from
  • Favorite place to travel to – Miami, Florida
  • Favorite video game – NBA 2K21; hopefully, I get into the next UFC game
  • Favorite animal – Dogs
  • Favorite holiday – Christmas
  • Favorite hobby – I don’t really have any hobbies. I’m really passionate about cooking though
  • Favorite quote – I don’t have a specific quote but anything from Kobe Bryant or Nipsey Hussle

You can follow UFC fighter Daniel Rodriguez on Instagram.

Check out the rest of my Humanizing Athletes series!

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