Former Xtreme Fighting Championships Featherweight #1 contender and Tennessee native Jason Wood (5-1) will return to the XFC cage on April 13th at the Oman Arena in Jackson, TN. Wood will take on heavy handed Ronnie Rogers (10-7) in a lightweight battle that will air live on HDNet.
Wood, who grew up in the area, will no doubt be the fan favorite when he steps into the cage that night. With millions of XFC fans watching on HDNet and friends & family in attendance, “The Ironman” insists he just wants to put on a show against Rogers. “I plan to go in, stand with him, and go toe to toe,” said Wood. “I want to give my fans a knockout. I can’t promise it won’t go to the ground, but I am looking for the knockout. Ronnie looks to be pretty strong and I think he likes to bang it out. He has some heavy hands, with several KOs on his record which I think makes for an exciting fight! From what I’ve seen, it’s a descent matchup for me on the ground too. But then again, I haven’t seen much of his ground game, so we will see what happens. I just want to knock him out and go out Rocky style in Jackson.”
Fighting Live on television on HDNet and in front of friends is special for any fighter, but Wood insists he realizes that the show means so much more to the West Tennessee fans and fighters. “XFC 17 is the biggest show that’s ever been to Jackson,” explained Wood. “If it goes over well, we want Jackson to be a staple for the XFC. I know Mr. Prisco has stated that he wants Tennessee to be the XFC’s second home and we have an opportunity to show him that we want to have them back and can deliver. It’s a great honor to be fighting for the XFC in my hometown and I want to put on a show for them and the fans, to help make the event really special.”
In March 2010 Jason Wood fought Jarrod Card for the XFC featherweight title. After a back and forth first round, Wood got caught in a rear naked choke and was forced to submit. Now, fighting at 155, Wood says he is much more comfortable at lightweight and won’t fight at 145 again. “When I fought Card I cut from 180 to 143.” said Wood. “I felt like it killed me having to cut almost 40 pounds. I need to be at lightweight. The fight with Rogers will be at 155 and it’s a better cut. I can cut 25 pounds and still fight to my potential. 145 was just a tough cut and I’m so much better at 155. Now that I don’t have to worry about all the weight, I’m concentrating on training. I’ve been doing two-a-days and hitting Jackson Gladiator’s Fitness with Greg Slach in the morning and in the evening I’m over at Jackson BJJ with Ashley Wheat. But the one guy who deserves all the credit is Anthony Maness. He’s one of my mentors and someone I look up to. He’s the man and the one who got me started.”
XFC President John Prisco is thrilled to have Wood back in the XFC cage and expects a barn-burner when Wood and Rogers step into the cage. “I’m really excited to see Jason back in the XFC,” said Prisco. “Two years ago he fought for our flyweight title and I really believe that he has the skillset to be a champion. Jason is very well rounded and can win a fight standing or on the ground. However, Ronnie Rogers is one of those guys that you can’t overlook. He was on a four fight win streak last year. He’s fought all over the Southeast, against some of the best in the world like: Rich Clementi and Deividas Taurosevicus. If this stays standing, I think we are going to see a classic XFC scrap. But, if it goes to the ground, it could be lots of fun too with both men being so skilled. Either way, it’s going to be an exciting night and I know the hometown fans will be rockin’ when Jason steps in the cage.”