by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com
When Urijah Faber steps into the cage on Sunday night it will be a rare occasion, as the hometown “California Kid” will likely be an underdog for only the second time in his MMA career. But the hype surrounding his rematch with WEC featherweight champion Mike Brown all boils down to one thing. Victory.
With Faber training hard alongside his teammates at Team Alpha Male in Sacramento, Calif., the date draws near for the former champion to get another chance at gaining back the 145-pound divisional title. Despite all the talk and all the attention being paid to this fight, he is tuning it all out and focused on the fight.
“I look forward to every day, and especially that day, get my belt back,” Faber told MMAWeekly Radio recently. “I don’t try to not think about it, I just go with the flow and I’m excited.”
The last time Faber and Brown squared off, in November 2008, it was the American Top Team veteran who laid the then champion out in the first round to claim the WEC gold. The former champion gives all the credit to Brown for the win, but he recognizes the mistakes he made and what he needs to do differently this time around.
“I slipped up last fight and I paid for it, and you can’t afford to make mistakes like that,” Faber commented. “That’s the biggest part. For the most part, I’ll be trying to implement my gameplan, and fight a great fight without making any mistakes.”
Still the loss can’t sit well with the California native who has only tasted defeat twice in his MMA career.
“It’s fuel for the fire for sure,” Faber stated about the loss to Brown. “I don’t want to over train by any means, sometimes coaches have to mention that stuff to you, but I’m being smart about my training. I’m going to really make sure I put in my time without getting too beat up, and I’m just going to be in there ready for battle.”
The odds may place Faber as an underdog for the fight, but once the cage door closes and the referee starts the fight, it just becomes a fight, no different than any other.
“I’m going to go in there and face a guy who’s another human being. He’s my same size, and I’m going to try to smash him up, and that’s what I’m going to do. That’s all that matters to me,” he said.
The hometown crowd will obviously be on Faber’s side come Sunday night. The former champion says the buzz around town has already started, and now he’s just ready to get down to business.
“I can feel it around town already. Everywhere I go people are yelling stuff, and excited. It’s going to be great,” he said. “I can’t wait to go in there and do my thing.”
Urijah Faber takes on Mike Brown for the WEC featherweight championship this Sunday live on Versus.