by Mick Hammond – MMAWeekly.com
It’s been an eventful week for Capital City Fighting Alliance’s Urijah Faber. Last weekend he defeated Pride Bushido veteran Charles “Krazy Horse” Bennett in dominating fashion and now he has signed to face one of the fellow top young fighters in the sport this coming January.
“I accepted a fight with TKO in Canada,” Faber told MMAWeekly. “I just signed the deal today to fight Ivan Menjivar on January 28th. It’s a one-fight deal, they wanted me to sign a three-fight deal, but I wanted to do this one first.”
Urijah continued, “Ivan’s ranked above me in the world, he’s fought in the UFC, Japan. I watched his video and he doesn’t really have any weakness. We’re fighting at 145 lbs. and I’m excited about that, basically looking forward to that fight.”
Faber is currently the King of the Cage 145 lbs. Champion and sports an impressive record of 10-1 in a little over two years of professional fighting.
When asked how he felt about facing Menjivar, a UFC veteran with fights against Matt Serra, Georges St. Pierre, and Vitor Ribeiro, Faber said, “It’s going to be a knockdown-drag-out fight. I watched his highlight video today on his website and he’s pretty bad ass. I’m thinking like I said earlier he doesn’t have any weaknesses. We’re going to go in there and fight and I’m imagining it is going to look a little bit like the Diego Sanchez VS Nick Diaz fight but a little bit faster and more explosive.”
As for strategy, Urijah expects Menjivar to bring a very diverse and explosive game to the table, conversely Faber hopes to use his speed and wrestling ability to keep the pressure on Ivan until he exposes an opening in his game.
“He’s fast, he looks like he’s got good kicks and good striking,” admitted Faber. “He knocked a guy out with a suplex in Japan, so I’m expecting fireworks and I imagine it will be one of the best fights of the year.”
“I’m going to use everything, basically it’s going to be a brawl and I’m going to look for him to make any kind of mistake. I think conditioning and heart is what’s going to win this fight. We’re both top-notch athletes, top-notch technicians in all the disciplines, so like I said it’s going to be a war. Hopefully I’ll make a good name in Canada and come home with a win for the USA. It’s The California Kid goes to Canada, and supposedly Ivan is The Pride of El Salvador also representing Canada, so Cali VS El Salvador/Canada and I’m looking to represent.” further commented Urijah.
Also this past week it was announced that the man that Urijah choked unconscience in his last bout, Charles Bennett, would be making an appearance at Pride’s Shockwave 2005 New Year’s Eve show in Japan, despite losing to Urijah just days earlier.
Faber didn’t seem phased that the man he beat is going to be getting an opportunity to fight on one of the year’s biggest cards; in fact, he is very supportive of Bennett in his match against actor Ken Kanenko.
“You know Krazy Horse is colorful and that’s part of the reason why he’s so famous (over there),” commented Urijah. “I’m just looking to get my foot in the door with Japan and I imagine that once they get a little taste of me they’ll be putting me on the big shows also. It doesn’t make me mad at all, it’s a good thing; especially since I came off the win over him, and I look forward to seeing that fight. I wish Krazy Horse the best, he should be able to lay the smackdown and do some exciting things.”
Faber continued, “Hopefully I’ll be going over, I’ve been talking with King of the Cage, we’re still working together, and they’re trying to get me over to Japan also. They actually wanted me to fight Ivan on one of their shows in the future, but it seems like this is the better route to go right now, but I’m still on good terms with those guys. So I’m hoping to do some big things with KOTC also.”
Urijah closed out the conversation by saying, “If you want to see one of the best fights of the year come watch California VS Canada/El Salvador (in TKO next year). It’s going to be fireworks and two of the best technicians and athletes in the world duke’n it out, so stay tuned. Thank you to Fairtex for supplying me with my gear, Nogi Industries, Skin Industries, all the guys that help me train and MMA Weekly.”