goiti-yamauchi.jpgAt just 20 years old, Brazilian prospect Goiti Yamauchi (14-1 MMA, 0-0 BFC) certainly has time on his side. But with 11 years of training already under his belt, Yamauchi is ready to make an impact right now.

“Despite taking it one fight at a time, I’m not going to America just for fun,” Yamauchi told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) in his native Portuguese. “I’m going for a championship belt. I feel I will be Bellator’s next world champion.”

Yamauchi was born in Japan to Brazilian parents. The family returned to Brazil when he was just 3 years old, and they settled in Curitiba. At age 9, Yamauchi took up Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Other arts soon followed.

“I started muay Thai at 13, boxing at 14, and wrestling at 15,” Yamauchi said. “At 15 I became an amateur MMA fighter.”

Success came instantly in the amateur ranks – seven wins, seven first-round stoppages.

In 2010, at the ripe old age of 17, Yamauchi made the choice to go pro. The results have been equally impressive, winning 14 of his first 15 professional contests, including 12 wins by submission. College has been put on hold, as has the pursuit of a traditional job, all in favor of Yamauchi pursuing his dream.

“I train at least three times a day, not to mention a resting period, so there isn’t much time for college in the life of a professional fighter,” Yamauchi said. “I’ve always been a fighter. My family has always supported me. We aren’t rich, but we aren’t poor either. They kept me in good schools, and I’ve made my sacrifices by not participating in youthful fun so I can keep working toward my goals.”

Yamauchi will take the next step toward fulfilling his goals later this year, as he recently signed a multi-fight deal with Bellator MMA and is expected to debut in non-tournament action.

The majority of his fights to date have been contested at 155 pounds, but the 5-foot-10 Yamauchi will compete as a featherweight under the Bellator MMA banner. He’ll have his sights on current Bellator champ Pat Curran from the moment he sets foot in the promotion.

“I do feel I need to mature a bit more, mentally and physically,” Yamauchi admitted. “But when I’m as ready as I can be, you can be sure that belt will be mine.”

MMA success remains a family affair for Yamauchi, as he counts cousin Shyudi Yamauchi as a primary training partner and uncle Ossamu Yamauchi as his head coach. He’s considering a training stint in the U.S. ahead of his first fight in the country, but nothing has been set in stone.

“I believe in training where I feel happiest,” Yamauchi said. “Of course, for Bellator I will intensify my training by adding more sparring partners. I might do a camp in the U.S. lasting several weeks, but I have a lot of faith in the work my team does in Curitiba and it is my home. I feel everything will turn out fine.”

Hardcore fans of MMA have long lauded the incoming wave of prospects to the sport – youngsters who have cross-trained in multiple disciplines throughout their youth. At just 20 years old, Yamauchi certainly seems to be among the most promising of the crop.

The Brazilian seems intent on making an impact, and he’s willing to do whatever it takes to get there.

“I don’t believe in having talent,” Yamauchi said. “If I have any talent, it’s my willpower and determination. I always give my best and keep a cool head

“I am confident I will reach the top of my weight class.”

For more on Bellator’s upcoming schedule, stay tuned to the MMA Rumors section of the site.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Third Time’s a Charm? Michael Page vs. Fernando Gonzalez Booked for Bellator in November

  • 28 days ago
  • 11 views

After originally being slated for Bellator 151 and Bellator 158, Michael “Venom” Page has again been booked to fight Fernando Gonzalez, this time in November. read news >>

Former Champ Alexander Shlemenko Returns to Headline Bellator 162

  • 28 days ago
  • 6 views

Former middleweight champion Alexander Shlemenko and WWE Superstar Bobby Lashley return to action at Bellator 162 in October. read news >>

Georges St-Pierre Believes Rory MacDonald ‘Chose the Best Option’ by Signing with Bellator

  • 28 days ago
  • 69 views

Former UFC champion Georges St-Pierre believes his friend, Rory MacDonald, made the right move, signing with rival promotion Bellator MMA. read news >>

After Grisly Skull Fracture, Bellator Should Say No to Return of Cyborg Santos

  • 28 days ago
  • 38 views

In the MMA world Monday, the figure holding the scale between integrity and lucre looked less like a blindfolded woman and more like Scott Coker. The same day, Evangelista "Cyborg" Santos, a 38-year- read news >>

Bellator 160: Henderson vs. Pitbull Main Card Fight Highlights

  • 27 days ago
  • 46 views

Bellator's return to SoCal came with some amazing finishes by rising star AJ McKee and Georgi Karakhanyan, while Derek Anderson continued his win streak. read news >>

UFC Signs Former Bellator Lightweight Title Contender Marcin Held

  • 27 days ago
  • 11 views

On the heels of Bellator inking a deal with former UFC welterweight contender Rory MacDonald, the UFC has signed former Bellator tournament winner Marcin Held. read news >>

Moving from UFC to Bellator, Rory MacDonald Begins His Vision Quest

  • 27 days ago
  • 4 views

After 21 violent minutes, Rory MacDonald's arsenal was spent. Beyond his last breath, the Canadian contender had nothing left to give as he lay shattered on the Octagon canvas. Few people realized it read news >>

Benson Henderson Will Get His Second Bellator Title Shot in November

  • 26 days ago
  • 16 views

After failing to win the Bellator welterweight title, former UFC champion Benson Henderson will get his second crack at a Bellator belt in November. read news >>

Bellator Continues Global Expansion with Championship Fight in Israel

  • 19 days ago
  • 10 views

Bellator continues its global expansion under the leadership of company president Scott Coker with a November event in Israel. read news >>

Veta Arteaga Knows What She Signed Up for at Bellator 161 | MMAWeekly.com

  • 14 days ago
  • 17 views

Undefeated flyweight Veta Arteaga knows what she signed up for at Bellator 161, and she's ready. read news >>