After closing 2013 with three straight wins, King of the Cage flyweight champion Frankie Saenz was looking to start off this year with the same kind of success, but met with his toughest challenge to date.
Defending his 125-pound title against Marvin Blumer in Scottsdale, Ariz., on Feb. 22, Saenz managed to get a TKO victory, but it didn’t come easy.
“It was a tough fight,” said Saenz. “It went four rounds. The guy has a good chin, he’s a good grappler, is real good off his back, is like five-foot-10-inches, so he was a tall guy and it was a war. I was still hurting a week later.
“I actually had him rocked in the first round. I hit him with a hook and a flying knee and dropped him, but he got back up. I dropped him again in the fourth and he got back up also. They ended up calling it in the fourth round because I elbowed him in the head and just cut him open.”
Thankfully for Saenz, he had just over five months off prior to his match with Blumer, allowing him ample time to get himself ready for the challenge.
“I needed a little time off to deal with some injuries and stuff, giving my body a chance to heal,” Saenz told MMAWeekly.com.
“It was a nice long training camp to just ease back in. I’m working on getting better with my stand-up and mixing strikes with my takedowns. Just give myself more tools and get a little bit better.”
With his current winning streak raising his record to 8-2, Saenz feels that this could be his year to step up to the national stage and make a name for himself in the 125-pound weight class.
“I’m just waiting for the call from the big leagues,” he said. “The KOTC is giving me great opponents, but I want to fight the best and test myself and see how I do against the best in the division.
“I’m on a four-fight winning streak and my last three fights haven’t gone the distance. I feel like I’m ready; I’ve just got to get the call and hopefully it will be this year.”