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URIJAH FABER: "MMADRAFT'S CONCEPT...KEEP AN EYE ON UPCOMING TALENT AND GIVE THEM A PLATFORM"

By Percy Crawford | March 28, 2013
URIJAH FABER:

"MMADraft's concept is kind of modeled after Max Preps and Rivals.com, which are similar sites for other sports. There are a lot of benefits for kids who get into this thing from their amateur career all the way until they turn pro that just want to be a part of the sport in generalÂ…This will allow us to kind of keep an eye on upcoming talent and give them a platform to be seen and give them some direction. Let them have the tools and see techniques and things that can enhance their careers. It's just a real tool for these guys to succeed, so it's super important and I'm pumped to be the one to bring it to the main stage. There really isn't a site that dedicates itself just to the amateurs like this," stated UFC bantamweight Urijah Faber, who talked about his latestet venture, mmadraft.com, his own upcoming clash with Scott Jorgenson, and much more. Check it out!

PC: Before we even talk about your new venture, www.mmadraft.com, congratulations on the win over Ivan Menjivar. How did you feel in there?

UF: I felt great, man. Yeah, it was a good one. He is a tough dude and he's been around for a long time and he's got a good skill set, so to get that W in the 1st round was awesome, man.

PC: With all of the "cutting fighters" talk, did you go into that fight with extra pressure on yourself on did you just fight your fight?

UF: I don't ever worry about any talk, man. That's all for people that aren't performing. I just do my thing and not worry about the little stuff. I don't really think about it. I don't really care what goes on with other fighters necessarily. I just always worry about my offense and my fights coming up and my team; all that kind of stuff.

PC: Big fight with Scott Jorgenson less than a month away. Tell us about it?

UF: Yes, I will be back in the cage in 3 weeks fighting in the main event for The Ultimate Fighter Finale on live TV and it will be a 5-round fight against Scott Jorgenson. I'm looking forward to that.

PC: This is a quick turnaround fight for you. Physically and mentally, how do you feel?

UF: I feel great coming into this fight. I think that last year, only fighting once helped and being able to fight right away is kind of nice for me, and I came out pretty unscaved; just some bumps and bruises in the last fight. So I might as well keep the ball rolling.

PC: Anyone that knows both of your styles can only imagine what 5 rounds in a cage together can be like. What can fans expect from this fight?

UF: It's gonna be fireworks. Like you said, anyone that knows our styles knows that we are two guys that like to throw down and we can go anywhere on the ground, standing, kicks, slams and submissions. We can do it all, so it's gonna be a wild fight and I'm expecting to win.

PC: You always have a lot going on outside of the cage. You have created www.mmadraft.com, which is a website dedicated for amateur fighters to put their profiles up and get recognition that they normally wouldn't get. Why Phil Davis as your partner in this venture?

UF: Well, Phil is really an intelligent guy and he's always thinking outside of the box as well, so I basically sat down and talked to him, and it was only the second time we had met, and we were talking about the future of our sport and we started talking about what was going to happen down the road and the opportunities for these younger guys. And we just came up with the concept right there. That was a few years ago and we went and made a partnership and started working on it. It's been a long process and it's really cool too. MMADraft's concept is kind of modeled after Max Preps and Rivals.com, which are similar sites for other sports. There are a lot of benefits for kids who get into this thing from their amateur career all the way until they turn pro that just want to be a part of the sport in general.

PC: You guys will feature a fighter every week and really pump these guys, and the amateur MMA scene doesn't really get a lot of attention. How important is this for these younger guys?

UF: I think it's real important because people are falling in love with our sport and there is a lot of talent and participation at the amateur level and I think this is kind of the missing link. The sport has a lot of notoriety and guys have to do a lot to get noticed. You have to get 5 or 6 pro fights before you get any type of recognition in the pro circuit. This will allow us to kind of keep an eye on upcoming talent and give them a platform to be seen and give them some direction. Let them have the tools and see techniques and things that can enhance their careers. It's just a real tool for these guys to succeed, so it's super important and I'm pumped to be the one to bring it to the main stage. There really isn't a site that dedicates itself just to the amateurs like this.

PC: Is this only for amateur mixed martial artists or all stages of mixed martial arts, such as boxing, Jiu Jitsu, etcetera?

UF: It's for anybody that participates in mixed martial arts and its disciplines: boxing, kickboxing, wrestling, Jiu Jitsu, anything. And it's not only for guys who are necessarily going pro, but we are creating a platform for guys who are involved as an amateur to be updated and keep in touch with this sport.

PC: What was the thought process behind involving Frank Trigg and Damon Martin, two guys with a lot of history in the sport?

UF: Well, the thing with Frank Trigg is he was an amateur wrestler with a long history in amateur wrestling before he became a fighter, and I think that was part of the reason we wanted him on board. He will be doing our interviews and stuff like that. And he also has an interest in seeing the sport grow. He's done commentary and he has a good name in the sport, and he's accomplished a lot in the sport and his knowledge all around makes him perfect; he likes to get to know the kids coming into the sport and this will allow him to get to know them a little bit. He's got the personality as well and he's good, man. He knows his stuff. And part of it that a lot of people aren't realizing, which is really cool, is the way we are bringing attention to these kids. Not only are we scouting them and actively looking for talent, but we are spending money on sponsorship on professional athletes at the highest level to draw attention to these younger athletes. You are gonna see me and Phil Davis wear www.mmadraft.com logos on our shorts and any of my guys that we sponsor, it's all coming back to get recognition to these guys.

PC: And to make a profile on the website is totally free, correct?

UF: Yeah, this is all free. You can go on there and make a profile. We are gonna be highlighting an athlete each week. We are gonna be doing special features on these guys and covering events and looking for upcoming talent and covering gyms and teams and stuff like that, so there is a lot of exposure on there, but it's all free. It's all about making it easier for these guys to find their way in this sport.

PC: I appreciate the time. If there is anything we can do at FightHype to help out your site, let me know. Is there anything else you want to add?

UF: Thanks for supporting the cause of www.mmadraft.com and I also have www.torque1.net;  that's my clothing line, so you guys check the gear out. We have new walkout shirts for this upcoming fight as well, and just thanks to my management and Team Alpha Male. I appreciate it, man!

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