Fresh off a disappointing setback in his Ultimate Fighting Championship debut, Darrius Flowers seeks to rebound at UFC Fight Night 236 this Saturday at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, as he clashes with the ever-unpredictable Michael Johnson in the lightweight division. Given the circumstances of the Dana White’s Contender Series alum’s last fight—a short-notice bout against an experienced opponent—some will wonder whether he is ready for all that comes with an unsuccessful UFC debut.
For those who harbor doubts, rest assured, Darrius Flowers is no stranger to skepticism. He acknowledges that everyone has been underestimating him his whole life, which is part of the reason why he is here in the UFC. His journey has been fraught with challenges and naysayers, yet it was precisely those obstacles that have propelled him to where he stands today.
Ahead of his looming battle with Johnson, here are five things you might not know about Flowers:
The journey of Flowers to the UFC has had its share of obstacles, mirrored in what many regard as an uninspiring boxing record. With a professional boxing record of 1-10, Flowers faced adversity head-on as he stepped into the ring against 10 unbeaten opponents. While his boxing career may have been filled with challenges, Flowers does not shy away from acknowledging this part of his journey. Instead, he views it as a crucial chapter in his evolution as a fighter. Despite the setbacks in boxing, Flowers remained relentless in his pursuit of improvement, particularly in mixed martial arts striking.
When asked about his heroes during an interview with UFC.com, Flowers offers a simple yet profound response: “God is my hero.” This unwavering devotion to his faith serves as a guiding principle in his life and career. Flowers sees every aspect of his journey, including his entry into the UFC, as part of a greater plan orchestrated by a higher power. With every fight, Flowers sees an opportunity to not only showcase his skills but also to honor his faith and the path laid out before him.
Before embarking on his journey as a fighter, Flowers spent two years at Ellsworth Community College. While the specifics of his academic pursuits remain undisclosed, his time at the college likely contributed to his personal and professional growth. Before transitioning to a career in fighting, Flowers had a unique occupation. He worked as a bully breeder, a job that required expertise and care in breeding and raising dogs. Additionally, he spent time working at a used car dealership.
Following his successful appearance on Dana White’s Contender Series, Flowers found himself in the midst of a whirlwind of emotions and celebrations. Just a week after securing his UFC contract, Flowers was set to fulfill his duties as the best man at his friend’s wedding in Las Vegas. Originally planned as a birthday celebration starting on his birthday, Flowers’ trip to Las Vegas coincided perfectly with his friend’s bachelor party. With a group of friends in tow, Flowers embarked on what would become a memorable journey filled with festivities and revelries. Speaking in an interview with “MMA Underground,” Flowers claimed he could not help but bask in the joy of his recent accomplishment—a contract with the UFC. Despite the jubilant atmosphere, Flowers remained grounded, recognizing the significance of honoring his friend’s milestone moment.
Flowers made an unusual admission regarding his Dana White’s Contender Series submission victory. He could not help but chuckle at the peculiar sequence of events that unfolded during the fight. Describing it as “pretty strange” and “funny,” Flowers recounted the moment when his opponent tapped out immediately, only to retract the submission attempt seconds later. While his opponent tapped out, Flowers executed a slam akin to the one UFC legend Matt Hughes unleashed on Carlos Newton. Reflecting on the event in an interview with “Knockout Radio,” Flowers confessed it as his most embarrassing moment. Despite the humor he finds in the situation, he acknowledges the unconventional victory’s peculiarity.