Ben Rothwell explains the legend behind his cloak following BKFC 30 knockout win: ‘I go to a very dark place’


Now that Ben Rothwell has retired from the UFC and no longer has to wear a promotion-sponsored uniform, that meant the return of his cape at BKFC 30.

Rothwell made the most of his BKFC debut when he beat Bobo O’Bannon in just 19 seconds last Saturday. The cape he wore in the ring isn’t just a piece of clothing, it helps Rothwell transition into a different state to prepare for what’s about to happen.

“Something is going on in my head. How can I click on it? I have to visualize some pretty dark stuff and I don’t even want to talk about it because I don’t want to scare people,” Rothwell said on air. Hour of MMA. “I go to a very dark place, I visualize in my head that this person did something to me, he did this to my family, whatever. I press mode and stand there, I was it all. For me at that moment, I was one of the most dangerous people on the planet.”

Rothwell wore this cape when he was in the UFC, but that was before they signed a clothing supply deal with Reebok, which launched in 2015. he could no longer move forward, as he needed to carry the necessary combat equipment.

While this may seem like a small thing to some, Rothwell’s absence of this piece of clothing affected who he was as a fighter.

“In 2015, when I came back and cape, I did it for Matt Mitrione and I was all of that,” Rothwell said. “For Josh Barnett, it wasn’t exactly like that. I went out, they made me take off my raincoat right before I went out and it fucked me up a bit. I had a great win over Josh, and right away in the interview I was Ben, I was a happy guy, and it was like I wasn’t there. I got away with it, more or less.

“Fights after that, I was Ben Rothwell, I’ll think about it, I wasn’t who you saw [at BKFC 30]. I wasn’t, and it cost me dearly. I lost a lot of fights that I should have won, and I will always be bothered that I left the UFC like that. The fight with Marcos Rogerio de Lima, I got away with something. If you faced what happened [at BKFC 30]it would be a completely different story and I will never leave it.”

Rothwell, proudly dressed in his cape and returning to the fierce rival he once was, believes that returning to those places was a huge burden of aggression thrown from his shoulders.

“Like it was a long time ago, man, because I could easily not get the opportunity to have this come out of me. [again]and that would worry me more than anything,” Rothwell explained.

“I’m taking it to the point where the person in front of me is going to fight for their life.”