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WSOF 27: Caros Fodor on fighting late replacement Luiz Firmino, gunning for Justin Gaethje

Caros Fodor makes his long-awaited World Series of Fighting (WSOF) debut at FedEx Forum in Memphis, Tenn., this weekend (Sat., Jan. 23, 2016_ against Luiz Firmino. "The Future" recently chatted with MMAmania.com about fighting in the co-main event live on NBC Sports against a last-minute opponent.

World Series of Fighting

World Series of Fighting (WSOF) 27: "Future Champs" takes place at FedEx Forum in Memphis, Tenn., this Saturday night (Jan. 23, 2016). It's the first event of the 2016 WSOF season and it's scheduled to air live on NBC Sports.

WSOF signed Lightweight fighter Caros 'The Future' Fodor (10-4) back in Sept. 2015. And since that time fans have anticipated the arrival of the former Strikeforce, UFC and One FC fighter inside the WSOF Decagon. The good news for Fodor is that the promotion undoubtedly has high hopes for him no matter how the bout turns out given he's the elder brother of WSOF superstar Phoenix Jones.

Recently, MMAmania.com spoke with Fodor about his Decagon debut, which was supposed to happen against Mike Ricci (11-4); however, Ricci withdrew from WSOF 27 because of an injury, so Luiz 'Buscape' Firmino (18-6) agreed to take the fight on short notice

"I'm good with the replacement. (Firmino is) the opposite of who I was training for. I went from fighting a tall striker to a shorter grappler, but I'm in shape and ready to do work."

That's not the only change to the card, though. Originally scheduled to be the main event in Memphis, Fodor's new fight with "Buscape" got demoted to co-main behind Teddy Holder (9-2) vs. Shamil Gamzatov (9-0).

"Yeah it sucks a little bit losing the main event (spotlight), but in reality... that just gives me more time at the after party!"

Maybe Fodor can be this chipper about it given he's excited to take his first fight in North America in almost three years. But, why did he leave One FC though a successful 3-1 run overseas?

"I left One FC on great terms. They treated me very well. I've wanted to come back to the United States to fight. Traveling -- although it was great and I got to see some things I never got to see, other countries and stuff --  but traveling two days before you fight especially that far is pretty taxing. You land on a Wednesday, you have to make weight on a Thursday, and none of my family and friends watched. You fell off from the American fan spectrum."

Fodor has at times been on the verge of breaking out as the man at Lightweight. He had a five-fight win streak in Strikeforce before losing to Pat Healy, and only got one chance in UFC before being cut after a split decision to Sam Stout.

Those setbacks have just motivated Fodor more.

"That was rough. I was pretty devastated because I thought for sure I'd get at least one more (chance) because it was a pretty close fight with Sam Stout. I got cut right after that and said 'Oof, that's rough -- they're not even playing around.' But, it all worked out fine. I went over to One (FC), got three out of four there. Everything works out for a reason. I wouldn't change anything, man."

Speaking of One FC, its recent move to ban dehydration weight cutting came as little surprise to Fodor, given it's something he had previously discussed with the company's Vice President.

"I talked to Rich Franklin about it when I was with One FC in a hotel a long time ago. He was just spitting ideas to how like if he was in charge that's what the sport needs for the safety of the fighters and just for better fights in general. If people aren't dehydrated and starving during this really intense training, if they're able to feed their body, you'll get better fights out of people."

Even though Franklin had the idea years ago, the death of Yang Jian Bing obviously gave the promotion extra motivation to make a change, and Fodor says it's something he's thought about dating back to his Strikeforce days.

"Josh Thomson and (I) were in the sauna together at Strikeforce, he told me that the older you get (that) you want to get down to losing like five pounds max of water. I didn't believe him at the time because I was young and dumb, but I ended up losing that fight against Pat Healy cutting 11 pounds."

Now that Fodor has his diet and training correct, a long rest to heal up and a chance to fight again on United States soil, he's ready to get down to business this weekend. And a win over WSOF and The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) veteran, Firmino, could put him next in line after Brian Foster for a shot at champion Justin Gaethje.

"It could be. I'm not really sure what the politics are behind it or who the rankings are. Foster is getting it right now, and Jason High just came over and smashed his guy. I've been out for a year and a half though so fighting and making money right now is good for me."

Fodor will get that chance to fight and make money at FedEx Forum live on NBC Sports. Check out the complete audio of our interview (pre-opponent change) below and complete fight coverage is HERE on MMAmania.com.