David Onama talks Benitez KO at UFC Vegas 48, early career and more

David Onama talks Benitez KO at UFC Vegas 48, early career and more

David Onama has very quickly become a name to watch inside the UFC octagon, as he just picked up a stunning KO victory over Gabriel Benitez this past weekend at UFC Vegas 48, securing the biggest win of his young career.

The Ugandan prospect isn’t new to this however, he went 10-0 as an amateur, spanning back to a start in 2014, and he’s now 9-1 as a professional. All nine of those victories come via finish too, with six knockouts and three submissions (two guillotine, one rear naked choke).

Onama is also a former FAC champion, a title he won prior to joining The Ultimate Fighting Championship.

What’s more, that lone defeat came to Cage Warriors two-division champion Mason Jones up at 155 lbs, a division above his natural weight of 145 lbs, and on a mere handful days’ notice.

Onama put on war with Jones and gave him absolute hell the entire time. Many believed he even won that contest.

Nonetheless, he corrected that wrong on Saturday by viciously KO’ing a talented striker in Gabriel Benitez in the preliminary main event of UFC Vegas 48.

Onama spoke about preparing for both his UFC debut against Jones, as well as his bout against Benitez.

See full interview here

I first asked him how he prepared for a talent like Mason Jones in such a short period of time:

“(My) first UFC fight, I wasn’t really prepared. Didn’t really have enough time to go over my guy (Jones) and study him. I didn’t really know much about him, I just took the fight on short notice for a really good opportunity, and I’m glad I took that fight.

“If I didn’t, I don’t know where I was gonna be today, so I’m glad I took that fight.”

He continued, “with Benitez I had two weeks, which was enough time for me to prepare myself for the fight; to go over him a little bit and watch some film on, to see what he’s really good at, and to see his weakness.

“I was training, it’s not like I wasn’t training for the (a) fight. I was still in the gym when I got the call. Again man, like I said I’m here to fight, I felt like it was a good fight for me, me and my coaches both agreed on it and we took the fight on two weeks.

Onama continued, “I feel like this is where I belong man, I can compete with these guys. I always knew I belonged in the UFC, and it’s a dream come true for me.

“When it comes to my original weight, featherweight, I can compete with these guys, this is where I belong. I feel like I put a lot of (1)45ers on notice, not just 45ers but everybody on notice. I’ve been saying this for a long-time man, it’s my time now. I gotta go out there and show people what I can do.”

He then gave me his story of moving from Uganda to the United States

“I moved to the states when I was 10 years old, I don’t really remember much about back home. But me and my family moved here for better freedom, better education, a better life, of course, for us.”

David Onama has a very inspiring story. It’s similar to some of his predecessors, such as Israel Adesanya, or Kamaru Usman, or Francis Ngannou, all of which are UFC champions right now that originally came from his home continent of Africa.

Many, many people have incredibly high hopes for this 27-year-old stud, and it’s clear to see why.

His head coach, James Krause is to thank for that, someone he’s trained under since starting in 2014.

Onama stated he’d like to return to the cage in April or May, which would give him enough time to have an actual training camp. How good would he be then? We’ve only seen him fight on short notice in the UFC, he surely has loads more to show us.

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Brady Ordway
I became a fan of combat sports when I was 12 years old. I was scrolling through the channels and landed upon Versus, where WEC was televised. Urijah Faber fought Jens Pulver for the second time that night. That's the first fight I ever saw, and I was immediately hooked. So eventually, I began covering the sport in the fourth quarter of 2018, and have since started writing about animals as well. If you'd like to see those pieces, be sure to check out learnaboutnature.com!