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Urijah Faber is a confident man and it's hard to argue when he tells you the best is yet to come.
The former WEC featherweight king has been holding his ground as one of the sport's top lighter weight fighters for the better part of the past decade, and according to the Team Alpha Male leader, his most impressive work is yet to be done. That is a lofty goal for a man who has accomplished as much as the 34-year-old has, and built the caliber of resume he's crafted, but "The California Kid" has continued to raise the bar every step of the way.
Granted, he's suffered setbacks along the journey, but those missteps have only come against the best of the best with the sport's biggest prize on the line. As a former champion, Faber knows what it feels like to be at the top of the mountain, and it's a place he's determined to reach again. That said, his wealth of experience over the years has brought new tools into his arsenal and time spent battling the unpredictable nature of the fight game has allowed Faber to make adjustments. Where getting his hands on UFC gold is certainly the ultimate prize, the California native has keenly invested in the process of the journey and has been willing to take whatever steps will keep him moving forward.
While he probably wanted some better results on the win-loss side of things thus far, Pat Healy readily admits that 2013 was his kind of year when it comes to staying busy, as his Saturday bout in Sacramento against Bobby Green will be his fourth of the last 12 months.
"I think that's one really big plus to the UFC," said Healy, who migrated back to the Octagon after Strikeforce closed its doors in January. "Having so many (UFC) shows gives you that opportunity to fight this much. It's how we pay our bills, so the more opportunities you have to fight, the better, and that was always the struggle in Strikeforce. They just didn't have enough shows to keep everybody active."
It's the most Healy has fought in a year since 2006, when he put the gloves on a remarkable seven times. And even that was a slow year for a true old-school battler like the Oregon native, who fought 10 times in 2005.
The Ultimate Fighting Championship® announced today that the Invicta FC women's mixed martial arts organization has assigned the contracts of 11 women's strawweight (115 pounds) competitors to the UFC. Terms of the assignment were not disclosed.
The 11 fighters are: Carla Esparza, Claudia Gadelha, Felice Herrig, Joanne Calderwood, Tecia Torres, Rose Namajunas, Bec Hyatt, Emily Kagan, Alex Chambers, Julianna Lima, and Paige Van Zant.
In May, these 11 competitors will report to Las Vegas and participate on season 20 of The Ultimate Fighter® in the first-ever all-women's edition of the show. And for the first time ever, The Ultimate Fighter® will crown a UFC champion, as the winner of season 20 will become the inaugural UFC women's strawweight champion.
Coaches for the show have not yet been determined. An additional five fighters will be selected for The Ultimate Fighter via a tryout set to be held in 2014.