by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com
From his win over Caol Uno to become the first ever UFC lightweight champion to being the first fighter to ever defeat B.J. Penn, Jens Pulver has been a part of historic fights during his entire career. But no moment may be more defining than when he faces Urijah Faber on June 1 for the WEC featherweight title.
Never a stranger to being under pressure, Pulver is ready for the challenge of a fighter like Faber, who is currently riding a 12 fight win streak and ranked #1 at 145lbs by virtually every recognized poll in MMA.
Not only that but Pulver will step into Faber’s hometown of Sacramento, CA for the fight, but the former UFC champion isn’t shying away from the challenge.
“That’s one more challenge to overcome,” said Pulver in a recent interview with MMAWeekly Radio. “I’ve overcome a lot in my life and I’ve overcome a lot in this sport, and this is just one more place for me to go out there and do it again. He deserves everything he’s getting because he’s a great champion, he’s a great fighter, and it’s my job to go in there and take it.”
Being a part of possibly the biggest fight in WEC history doesn’t phase Pulver much either. He understands the importance of the fight, but he’ll look at the historic significance of the bout for his legacy some other time.
“Later on I’m going to look at it as an honor, but right now I’m looking at it more as, ‘can I get back to the top, please?” Pulver stated. “Can I just be back up there as one of the best fighters? I always find myself in these situations, in these defining moments, and I’ve come out on top once or twice, but I’ve also come out on the bottom a few times and this is just that point in my career, right here, right now, this is massive.”
“This is big, and I’m really training as hard as I can. This is do or die for me, in the aspect of I really want to come out on top this time.”
While the entire MMA world will discuss the ins and outs of who will come out victorious in the fight, Pulver and Faber have both stayed busy with training, while avoiding much talk when it comes to each other.
“We have nothing but respect for each other, but watch how hard we pound each other, cause that’s our job,” Pulver commented. “Nobody makes us get in that cage, we choose to get in that cage. We’re going to go out there, we’re going to fight as hard as we can.”
The WEC and Versus recently profiled both Pulver and Faber for a preview show about the upcoming title fight. In the documentary, Pulver was shown breaking down fight tape on his opponent and while he admits he likes to look for tendencies in his opponent, Pulver says Faber is a tough fighter to game plan for.
“He’s one of those kids, he’s like a chameleon,” Pulver said. “The kid adapts and makes things up as he goes, so you can’t really map him.”
While Pulver may not be able to map out what Urijah Faber will do on Sunday night, what he is hoping for is when it’s all said and done to walk out with the WEC featherweight championship.
What exactly would that mean to a fighter who has seemingly seen in all in the sport of MMA?
“It’d mean the world to me,” Pulver closed.