LAS VEGAS — Poplar graduate Hunter Azure earned a UFC contract in the Dana White Contender Series on Tuesday.
Azure was one of five fighters to receive a contract. The bantamweight improved his career record to 7-0 on Tuesday, when he earned a clearcut decision win over previously undefeated Chris Ocon.
"This kid dominated an undefeated kid that everybody's talking about," White, UFC's president, said on ESPN after the fight. "When we asked Hunter to come on this show, he said, 'I want one more fight.' So he risked the opportunity to come on this show to take another fight. Then he comes in, fights the way that he fought, tried to finish the entire fight. This kid's right up my alley. Twenty-seven years old. He's in his prime. He's 7-0.
"Welcome to the UFC, Hunter."
The Contender Series, which began in 2017, is "a promotion that will allow up and coming fighters the chance to showcase their talents in hopes that one day they may compete in the UFC," according to Fox Sports.
Azure won four Class B state wrestling titles for the Indians from 2007-10, starting at 119 pounds as a freshman and finishing his high school career at 145. The Fort Peck Sioux and Assiniboine tribal member went on to wrestle for MSU-Northern.