In 30 years of operations, the UFC (which started in Denver on November 12, 1993) has never had a Denver native become a UFC undisputed champion. Denver native Brandon Royval challenges for the UFC Flyweight Championship this Saturday at UFC 296 against Alexandre Pantoja. Royval hopes to become the first to do it for the Mile High City.

The Factory X team captain joined The MMA Plug to talk about his journey to the title shot and what it means to him to have a rematch with Pantoja nearly two and a half years in the making.

Royval is not only one of the best pound for pound fighters on the planet, he is also an active member of the Denver community who spends his off time giving back to multiple youth programs around the city. Prior to becoming a contender in the UFC, he worked at a youth correctional facility which he cites as having a major impact on him and something that continues to drive him to this day.

Royval has created a youth night along with the Denver Dream Center where he hosts at-risk kids for a night of activities such as boxing and basketball and also puts food in their stomach. He has hosted multiple fundraiser events for youth boxing programs in the city. Also, he had a wildly successful back-to-school drive in which hundreds of kids were the beneficiaries of donated school supplies.

When it comes to work ethic, Royval believes that there has not been anyone who has consistently outworked him for the last 15 years. As a teenager, Royval used to ride his bike to the gym 13 miles in each direction just so that he could train. He also has a special relationship with his head coach at Factory X, Coach Marc Montoya, whom he has trained under the tutelage of for more than half of his life.

From the moment he started fighting, Royval had the goal of becoming the most dangerous flyweight in the world. Statistically, his finish rate and attack metrics give him that recognition. On Saturday night, he looks to cement his legacy by having 12 lbs of UFC gold wrapped around his waist.