Montagnard Refugee Becomes MMA Fighter in US

Speaking only a few sentences of his native language, Theo Rlayang, 24, who fled Vietnam when he was a child with his family, wants to compete in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) in the United States.

He arrived in the United States through a UN camp in Cambodia in 2002 after escaping persecution in Vietnam. Besides going to college, he pursues Mixed Martial Arts (MMA). Rlayang is an amateur fighter and has won five out of six fights so far.

“My plan is I want to just become the best fighter too, you know, that I want to go to the big orientation like UFC or like get all the belts, get all the championship, you know… because there is like … there’s never been an Asian UFC champion,” he said.

“Because you know other guys, Asian fighters, do not really… they don’t do well in the UFC because they focus on one traditional style and you know they are coming here, they don’t do as much, but I want to fight and show that I can do it.”
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