Russ Roman, 29, has been a fan of Daniel Cormier, since the former US Olympic wrestling team captain, then 1-0 in MMA, appeared on MMA Junkie Radio for the first time some five years ago
Roman, a Domino's Pizza deliveryman from Lawrence, Mass., saved his tips and had booked a trip to UFC 181 on Dec 6, 2014 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The hardcore fan was bummed when he learned that Cormier was booked to replace Alexander Gustafsson vs. Jon Jones at UFC 178 on Sept 27, 2014 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
REAL DEAL @realdealruss • Professional deal finder MMAJunkie Hall of Famer #junkienation
I should've gone to 178. Go @dc_mma
The bond between fans and fighters in mixed martial arts is like no other, and it goes both ways. During his most recent appearance on MMAJunkie Radio, Cormier heard about the pizza guy who couldn't afford two trips to the UFC so close together, and is flying the fan out.
“If I’m his favorite fighter, and he wants to see me compete for a title, get me his information, you get him off of work, and I’ll fly him to Vegas,” said Cormier as transcribed by Steven Marrocco for MMAJunkie. “Now, am I going to take care of his whole trip? No. But I’ll take care of his travel. There you go.”
A wicked excited Roman variously described himself as "super excited" and "beyond excited."
“He’s just one of the regular guys,” said Roman of Cormier. “I’ve been following him for so long, and I haven’t missed any of his fights for years. He’s one of those guys that it’s always a can’t-miss fight.”
Listen to entire interview...