Imagine you are a professional combat sports athlete and the promoter you are currently working for, calls you to notify you of your next opponent. He tells you the name, it sounds familiar, you pause for a moment, and then think to yourself.... "that's the guy who sent me a Facebook friend request a month ago."
Small world right?
Well, that is exactly what happened to professional boxer turned Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship superstar Dat Nguyen prior to his BKFC 8 bout against Travis Thompson.
Nguyen had signed his contract and was training to fight a southpaw in Matt Murphy in October 2019.
Days before the event unfolded, Nguyen said he started feeling ill.
"I got a runny nose and I was like 'ok, it's a runny nose, no big deal.' Then the next day I started feeling weak," Nguyen said. "I think I picked something up from the sauna. Five days before the event I caught a fever."
That's when Nguyen got the call that his opponent had pulled out of the fight due to an injury.
"I thought, 'maybe the fight is off and this is why I got sick. Maybe it was meant to be and this happened for a reason,'" Nguyen said.
That's when Bare Knuckle FC President David Feldman told Nguyen that he will find him a short notice opponent.
"They gave me a name.... Travis Thompson," Nguyen said. "Travis Thompson... that sounds familiar."
The two had just become friends on social media but that would not stop them from standing toe-to-toe inside the squared circle just hours later.
With just a few days notice, Thompson would deliver, taking Nguyen all five rounds.
The two men would earn 'Fight of the Night' honors and will now share the ring once again, this time with different opponents at BKFC 10 on February.
Thompson will fight Jos Boudreaux and Nguyen will meet BKFC fan-favorite Abdiel Velazquez.
"Abdiel, stylistically is a little different," Nguyen said of his upcoming opponent. "He likes to rush in, hit, hit again, and then run out."
Nguyen described Velazquez to Paulie Malignaggi who headlined BKFC 6 against Artem Lobov.