Originally from Recife in Northeast Brazil, he now lives and trains in Atlanta with Ascension MMA under Manu N’toh. He is also the brother of Júnior Assunção and Freddy Assunção who also fight as mixed martial artists. Raphael has a daughter.
Mixed martial arts career
World Extreme Cagefighting
Ultimate Fighting Championship
On October 28, 2010, World Extreme Cagefighting merged with the Ultimate Fighting Championship. As part of the merger, all WEC fighters were transferred to the UFC.
Assunção was expected to face Manvel Gamburyan on March 19, 2011 at UFC 128, but Gamburyan was forced out of the bout with a back injury and replaced by Erik Koch. He lost the fight via KO in the first round.
Assunção faced Mike Easton on December 8, 2012 at UFC on Fox 5, replacing an injured Bryan Caraway. He won the fight via unanimous decision despite suffering a broken arm during the first round.
Assunção was expected to face T.J. Dillashaw on September 4, 2013 at UFC Fight Night 28. However, the pairing was delayed and was rescheduled for a future event due to a minor medical issue for Assunção. The bout with Dillashaw was rescheduled and took place on October 9, 2013, at UFC Fight Night 29. Assunção defeated Dillashaw via split decision. The back and forth action earned both the participants Fight of the Night honors.
Assunção was expected to face Francisco Rivera at UFC 170. However, Rivera was forced from the bout due to a hand injury. Assunção instead faced touted UFC newcomer Pedro Munhoz. He won the fight via unanimous decision.
Assunção was briefly linked to a Bantamweight Championship bout against Renan Barão on May 24, 2014 at UFC 173. However, Assunção opted to decline the bout as a rib injury sustained in his last bout at UFC 170 had not healed enough to resume the proper training in advance of the event. Barão instead faced, and was ultimately defeated by T.J. Dillashaw.
Assunção faced Bryan Caraway on October 4, 2014 at UFC Fight Night: MacDonald vs. Saffiedine. He doubled the numbers of strikes Caraway threw and caught him with knees to win a unanimous decision victory.
On December 22, 2014, Assunção announced that he had suffered a broken ankle during training that would not require surgery, but is expected to be sidelined for up to 10 weeks.
A rematch with perennial contender Urijah Faber was expected to headline UFC Fight Night 62 on March 21, 2015. However, Assunção was forced out of the bout as an ankle first injured in mid-December 2014 was slow to heal and that he was unable to resume the proper training to prepare for the fight in that time frame. Subsequently, in August 2015, Assunção’s management team announced that he would undergo surgery on the ankle and hoped to return by the end of the year.
Assunção was expected to face Aljamain Sterling on December 9, 2016 at UFC Fight Night 102. However, Sterling pulled out of the fight on November 23 citing injury. Assunção was subsequently removed from the card. The bout with Sterling was rescheduled and took place on January 28, 2017 at UFC on Fox 23. Assunção won the fight via split decision.
Assunção faced Matthew Lopez on November 11, 2017 at UFC Fight Night: Poirier vs. Pettis. At the weigh-ins, Lopez missed weight, weighing in at 138.5 lbs., three and a half pounds over the Bantamweight limit. As a result, he forfeited 20% of his purse to Assunção and the bout proceeded as Catchweight. He won the fight via knock out in the third round. This win also earned him a Performance of the Night bonus award.
Assunção faced Marlon Moraes in a rematch on February 2, 2019 in the main event at UFC Fight Night 144. Assuncao won the first fight by split decision at UFC 212 on June 3, 2017. Before accepting the rematch, Assunção negotiated a new contract with the UFC. Assunção lost the rematch in the first round after being dropped by two punches and then submitted via a guillotine choke.
Article source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raphael_Assun%C3%A7%C3%A3o