Here’s your under the radar fight for the weekend folks. Big boys Tyrell Fortune and Rudy Schaffroth are both 6-0, the winner will likely land a much bigger named opponent in their next Bellator fight. Somebody’s 0 has to go, which always makes for a well anticipated fight for MMA fans. I guarantee “The American Gangster” Chael Sonnen is looking forward to this fight, especially since Schaffroth is one of his pupils at Team Quest. If you research this match up you’ll quickly find out Tyrell and Rudy are ex-teammates. Fortune was a standout wrestler at Clackamas Community College who turned into an Olympic hopeful, piling up 16 national titles in Freestyle and Greco. Schaffroth wrestled at Clackamas CC for a short time as well before moving on to wrestle at Montana State Northern.
A post shared by Tyrell Fortune (@fortune_over.fame) on May 25, 2019 at 2:12pm PDT
Tyrell and Rudy were never close friends as teammates, at least it appears that way based on how they speak of each other. Recently Tyrell commented on Rudy saying “I’m not worried about him because he’s not an athlete”. Rudy’s response? “I don’t think Tyrell respects me, I don’t think he’s ever respected my abilities, I don’t think he’s ever thought I was on his level or as an equal. I’m gonna take advantage of that wholeheartedly.” Rumor is Tyrell thought Rudy called out to fight him, which according to Schaffroth is false. Rudy said he’d have rather fought him later down the road when there was more money to be made, but here they are fighting to see who keeps their undefeated record.
A post shared by Rudy Schaffroth (@bigrute44) on Aug 9, 2019 at 7:31pm PDT
If you look at the bodies of both men next to each other it looks like an NFL linebacker vs a retired fireman. Fortune has unquestionable speed and power, looks mean and isn’t afraid to consistently mix up wrestling with striking. If you’re judging based solely on appearance Tyrell is definitely more the true athlete, but most would agree that being a great athlete and a great fighter don’t necessarily go hand in hand. Schaffroth is dangerous because his quick twitch reflexes are very deceiving for a large heavyweight, it seems like he was born to react quickly in high stress situations. His demeanor is calm yet his hands are quick, powerful and accurate. Rudy has knocked out 5 of 6 opponents in the first round and has less than 10 minutes of total cage time in his 6 professional fights. His only submission win, a 1st round arm triangle, proves he can’t be taken lightly on the ground. Don’t let the “dad bod” fool you, Schaffroth is a dangerous man!
A post shared by Rudy Schaffroth (@bigrute44) on Nov 29, 2018 at 1:47pm PST
Schaffroth is more likely the man who will want to “stand and bang” while Fortune will utilize his wrestling. Rudy is 6’4”, has a 77” reach and walks around at the top end of the heavyweight limit. Before being signed to Bellator, Schaffroth was fighting at superweight and had to drop around 30lbs to ensure he didn’t have to pointlessly cut weight. Fortune is about 6’0” with a 76” reach and weighs around 245. Fortune has translated his wrestling skills to MMA very well thus far in his career. His striking (especially boxing) skills are improving fast, making for an even scarier man.
A post shared by Tyrell Fortune (@fortune_over.fame) on Apr 30, 2019 at 2:42pm PDT
Schaffroth seems to be even more in love with striking, as evidenced in a recent interiew; “I feel like I might be even more comfortable in the standup than my wrestling because wrestling has more involved after the takedown. But with striking, if you land those big blows, you don’t have to do anything after. Wrestling requires more effort, gets me more tired, empties my gas tank faster. I try to avoid that at all costs. There is also the fact I just like throwing hands at dudes and like to knock them out.” This is a very telling quote and leads me to believe Tyrell will want to utilize a wrestling heavy game plan and drag Rudy into deep water, test his stamina. Fortune has a couple decisions on his record, he’s proven he can go a full 15 minutes with no major issues. Fast knockouts are great, but the double edged sword is Schaffroth has significantly less cage time than Fortune and leaves more question marks regarding his gas tank.
If I’m forced to pick a winner I suppose I have to pick Fortune, but Schaffroth is very live dog in this fight. Tyrell has the better overall resume when you consider their wrestling backgrounds, but the fact Schaffroth keeps smashing everybody early in the 1st round can’t be ignored. His hyper aggressive style is extremely dangerous but also may leave him vulnerable to gassing out and I highly doubt cardio will be a worry for Fortune. Being I lived in Portland Oregon for 5 years at the time these men wrestled in college, I’m more excited for this fight than any other on the card. If you’re an MMA fan who likes watching big heavyweights throw some serious leather, make sure you tune in this Saturday.
Jason Marlowe, UnknownMMA