TUF 17 Finale headliner Urijah Faber talks fighting friends vs. enemies


urijah-faber-35.jpgLAS VEGAS – Urijah Faber has about three categories of opponents.

He knows who he wants to fight. He knows who he absolutely doesn’t want to fight. And he knows who he would fight if he had to avoid that second scenario.

On Saturday, Faber (27-6 MMA, 3-2 UFC) fights longtime friend Scott Jorgensen (14-6 MMA, 3-2 UFC) in the main event of the TUF 17 Finale at Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.

And he’s willing to go through with that because it sure beats No. 2 – fighting his Team Alpha Male training partners – and, given Jorgensen’s standing in the bantamweight division, it might just be one of his quickest paths back to No. 1, which would be a fight against longtime rival Dominick Cruz, the champion who has been benched with back-to-back knee surgeries.

“That’s why I have to take fights like this and save my ace card – because I’m not going to fight my brothers,” Faber said. “T.J. Dillashaw, Chad Mendes – these guys, I recruited when I was at UC-Davis and they were in high school, and they followed through on their careers and I put them on my team. So it’s a whole different scenario. Danny (Castillo) and I were buddies our freshman year of high school.”

With Jorgensen, it’s not quite the same since they’re not teammates – though they have spent some time training together in the past. But it’s not as if they merely shared a cab to the airport one day and have traded a few text messages.

Their families know each other. This is a real friendship, Faber assures us.

But because of the level both are at, Faber believes, both mentally and physically, this fight is possible without tearing the friendship apart. Business is business.

“It takes someone that has their head on straight,” Faber told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). “We both can check our egos at the door and understand that this is business and know we’re both going to be OK. I don’t think he has the ability to kill me and I don’t have the ability to kill him – we’re too well prepared for that kind of thing. But it’s going to be a great fight.”

As for where this win would put Faber, he’d have two straight after losing an interim bantamweight title fight to Renan Barao this past summer. Barao since has defended that interim strap against Michael McDonald and fights Eddie Wineland in June.

Meanwhile, Cruz still is on the shelf with no definite timetable for his return. But the animosity level Faber has toward Cruz is enough that he’d happily fight him a third time. Or a fourth. Or a fifth. All while still preparing properly for the fight and not getting too emotionally invested.

“I’d fight Dominick Cruz every day if they let me,” he said. “But you have to separate all that and prepare for every fight like it’s a championship fight, and I’ve always done that.”

For more on The Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale, stay tuned to the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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

Related News

  • 16 days ago
  • 11 views

LAS VEGAS -- Urijah Faber discuss his UFC 181 fight against Francisco Rivera, why he's happy to fight on the prelims again, his future as a bantamweight, the pros and cons of the new Reebok deal, and read news >>

  • 14 days ago
  • 8 views

LAS VEGAS – There was some controversy behind it, but when Urijah Faber sees opportunity, he takes advantage.Filed under: News, UFC, Videos read news >>

  • 14 days ago
  • 4 views

LAS VEGAS – Francisco Rivera was giving Urijah Faber plenty to think about after the first round, but then the tide turned in an unfortunate way.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

  • 14 days ago
  • 7 views

LAS VEGAS - An apparent eye poke cost Francisco Rivera dearly in his UFC 181 fight against Urijah Faber on Saturday night. Rivera was holding his own against the former WEC featherweight champion in read news >>

  • 14 days ago
  • 21 views

LAS VEGAS – Not everyone looked charitably upon the addition of Phil “CM Punk” Brooks’ to the UFC. But not so for Urijah Faber. Filed under: News, UFC, Videos read news >>

  • 10 days ago
  • 34 views

One more win and this prediction comes true. Now that the twelfth and final episode of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 20 has wrapped (full recap here), we finally have our main event for the live finale, read news >>

  • 8 days ago
  • 53 views

LAS VEGAS – Carla Esparza made history on Friday night in the UFC. Check out the highlights of her win inside.Filed under: News, UFC, Videos read news >>

  • 8 days ago
  • 17 views

LAS VEGAS – A submission happy Charles Oliveira mostly was on cruise control on Friday with his submission game.Filed under: News, UFC, Videos read news >>

  • 8 days ago
  • 36 views

LAS VEGAS – In a battle of a pair of “TUF” finalists, Jessica Penne outworked Randa Markos to open the main card. Filed under: News, UFC, Videos read news >>

Jump to: