Having fought just once in the past couple years, former UFC and Strikeforce veteran Jorge Gurgel has spent his time focusing on business and helping those around him.
“I just opened up a humongous business,” said Gurgel. “It’s 21,000 square feet and has been filling up with people. I opened up a big CrossFit program, a pro boxing program, and the jiu-jitsu program is growing.
“I have three fighters in Bellator, two fighters in the UFC, and girls in Invicta, and you’ve got to establish everybody. If you don’t give them of yourself and don’t give them a chance and coach them and everything, you won’t give them a fair chance to win a fight. I took a step back so my fighters can win their fights and I can be there to coach them.”
When asked why he decided to return to fighting now, Gurgel says it’s just who he is and he couldn’t deny it any further.
“I’m a fighter – that’s what I am – and fighters fight,” he said. “I felt this void. The guys are winning, the girls are winning, everyone’s doing well, the school is growing, but I just felt incomplete. I felt like there was something missing.
“I thought, ‘why not fight now,’ so I made one call to my manager, Monte Cox, and told him I need to fight and the next day he called me and said Titan wanted me to go (fight for them) and that they wanted me to be the main event.”
When Gurgel (14-9) returns on Friday, Feb. 28, at Titan FC 27 in Kansas City against fellow UFC vet Mike Ricci (8-4) he’ll be doing so as the same fighter he was when he left, but with a slight difference.
“When you see my name on a fight card, you know you are going to see a fight,” said Gurgel. “You’re going to see a guy who comes from bell to bell and try to finish the guy or go out on his shield.
“I’m never going to change that, but I’m going to be more intelligent. Use my skills to their fullest ability and put Mike Ricci away.”
Now that he’s back fighting, Gurgel told MMAWeekly.com that with everything he’s accomplished in his life, there’s still one thing missing in his career.
“I don’t see anything past Mike Ricci and I just really want to fight because I’m healthy, I’m motivated, I enjoy training, and enjoy the grind, but I want a belt, and I’ve been told the winner of this fight gets a title shot,” said Gurgel.
“Of course, I have a goal to have a belt strapped around my waist. I’ve never had a major MMA organization championship, and it’s something I have on my bucket list. So, I’m not looking past Mike Ricci, but after I get my hand raised, I want the title shot and a belt around my waist.”