Saturday, February 09, 2008
URIJAH FABER - CLASS ACT - GOOD PEOPLE
Mixed martial arts has been the fastest growing sport in the world for the last two years now. The Ultimate Fighting Championship has been the most dominant and largest organization in the sport. Zuffa (the parent company of the UFC) purchased a smaller organization, World Extreme Cagefighting, back in December of 2006. When that transition went through, observers thought the WEC would serve as the minor leagues for the UFC.
To the casual fan, that might be the case. To true fight fans, there isn't anything further from the truth.
World Extreme Cagefighting has a ton of talent and superstars of their own, many of which can hang with the "so called big boys" of the UFC.
The best thing about the WEC is the fact that they have a 135 and 145 pound weight class and the UFC does not. The most exciting fights usually are the faster and smaller guys.
The biggest star in the WEC just happens to be the king of the featherweight division. He also is one of the most dominating fighters in all of the sport no matter what division or organization.
Urijah Faber fights at 145 pounds for the WEC and puts on one helluva show every time he steps into the cage. If you like action, fast pace, and exciting fights, then you need to watch a Urijah Faber match.
Faber is currently 20-1 in his mixed martial arts career. In his last fight, he dominated Jeff Curran to defend his WEC title yet again back in December. He is also easily one of my favorite fighters due to his fast paced style. He's always aggressive and likes to put on a show.
Urijah is currently training and awaiting the announcement for his next fight. One of the biggest stars in mixed martial arts, known as "The California Kid", found time to speak with me.
SS: Thanks for taking the time to speak with me Urijah, how is everything?
UF: Not a problem, I'm actually battling a cold and lost a little weight so I'm just trying to get that back on.
SS: You were a standout wrestler in both high school and college, what made you get into mixed martial arts?
UF: I was always a huge fan. I loved watching fighting and boxing and was really into contact sports. I watched every UFC. It was something I thought I'd be good at, the opportunity presented itself and I went for it.
SS: Who were some of the fighters you liked watching in the early UFC days?
UF: I liked the guys with great technique and the wrestlers, Vitor Belfort, Mark Coleman, Don Frye, Tito Ortiz, and Randy Couture.
SS: Who will we see you fighting next and when?
UF: The rumor right now is that it will be Jens Pulver in June. In might happen in Sacramento at Arco Arena. I hope that happens, I'd love to fight in my home town.
SS: What kind of game plan would you have with Jens, he's a true veteran.
UF: I would just train with some southpaws and go fight him.
SS: Is there anyone else out there you would like to fight?
UF: All the contenders at 145. There are a bunch of them that the general public is in the dark on. I honestly don't care who I fight, I'm just looking for good competition.
SS: Is there any aspect of your game you feel needs more work?
UF: I'm always working on my standup. You can never stop learning. I work in all areas and blend it all together. If you train right, you'll get better. Technique is the key and you can always work on that.
SS: Any idea of how long you plan on staying in the fight game?
UF: I'm not a big planner , if I was I'd probably be selling mortgages somewhere. No, I plan to do it until I stop enjoying it. I'll listen to my body and heart. As long as I'm still competitive, maybe until I'm 36 or 38, somewhere around there. I'll stack some chips and get out.
SS: I'm really looking forward to your fight with Jens. I really do appreciate your time, I'm a big fan and keep up the great work. Hopefully we can do it again soon.
UF: Not a problem and thank you · By Scott Swerbinsky
Posted by Doug Jefford