by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com
Team Alpha Male has become one of the premier gyms to produce fighters in the WEC’s lighter weight divisions, and the newest member hopes to get his first win in the organization after his first full camp with the Sacramento based team.
Bryan Caraway picked up his belongings and moved lock, stock and barrel to Sacramento to begin working full time with the Urijah Faber led team, and as he heads into his Wednesday night match-up with Fredson Paixao, his confidence is at an all time high.
“I made the move to Ultimate Fitness and Team Alpha Male, with Urijah Faber, and this is going to be my first fight and my first camp fully with their team, and I think if I would have fought before I would have been in the middle, or moving, getting things ready or whatever because it took me a while to get fully down here,” Caraway told MMAWeekly in an interview recently.
“I’m really excited it worked out this way. I’m going to feel extremely confident.”
Caraway says that the training there is naturally going to make him better, but it’s the mental adjustments he’s made since working there that will be the ultimate payoff for his career.
“I think it makes a huge difference in my mental state, and physical too because it’s really hard to find guys that are that level that are at smaller weights because we really just move so much differently, so much more active, so much more technique I believe,” Caraway commented. “It’s just really hard to mimic that.”
As he makes his second appearance in the WEC cage, Caraway is scheduled to face Brazilian Jiu-Jitsuz whiz Fredson Paixao. This will be the second time Caraway has been set to face Paixao, but the first chance was canceled when the Team Alpha Male fighter suffered a knee injury in training that forced him out of the fight.
Back healed up 100%, Caraway has already broken this fight down in his head hundreds of times. He knows the danger that Paixao brings on the ground, but there’s a big difference between the grappling mat and the WEC cage.
“The great thing about this is it’s not jiu-jitsu. I see myself as world class jiu-jitsu practitioner, too. Obviously I may not have the credentials Fredson has, but I think I could have those credentials if I put that much time into jiu-jitsu, as he has. I put that much time in fighting. I have 30 MMA fights, how many does he have?” Caraway stated.
“The great thing about this is this is MMA. I don’t care if I take him down. I’ll take him down and pound him from the top. Everybody says it, ‘you punch a black belt, he goes to a brown belt.’ Not in all cases, but you do see that happen in MMA a ton. These traditional jiu-jitsu guys don’t like to hang when they start getting socked around.”
Socking Paixao around is exactly what Caraway hopes to do as he wants to get back on the winning track after losing his debut fight in the WEC to Canadian stand-out Mark Hominick. With the possibility of back-to-back losses looming overhead, Caraway knows there’s pressure on him in this fight, but he’s going to make sure the pressure ends up on Paixao instead.
“I think I kind of ended up succumbing to the pressure in my first fight,” Caraway admitted. “Hats off to (Mark) Hominick, I just know that definitely wasn’t my best foot forward, by any means. I really just think I have so much more to prove, and there is added pressure.
“You’ve just got to get in there and fight.”
Fight is what he will do on Wednesday night as Caraway faces Fredson Paixao at WEC 50 in Las Vegas.