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Old 01-22-2009, 05:21 AM
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Default No Excuses, Pulver Fighting for Relevancy



Wednesday, January 21, 2009 - by Mitch Gobetz - MMAWeekly.com

Former UFC lightweight champion Jens Pulver is looking to get back on the winning track when he takes on Urijah Faber at WEC 38 in a major rematch from their fight back in June of last year.

Pulver is training for this fight on a little bit of short notice, but he takes it all in stride.

It is what it is, he said in an interview with MMAWeekly Radio. I'm excited of course to fight. It's been a tough month and a half to get here, but I'm excited. I'm out here in Auburn training, doing what I got to do to get ready for my fight. The family is with me. The quality time is continuing. It was a long delay and my friend Justin Eilers got murdered on Christmas, so I had to sit still and wait and go over there to say goodbye to him and go to his funeral.

Unfortunately, because of the events surrounding this fight, such as the birth of his new son and the untimely death of Eilers, a fellow UFC veteran, Pulver was not able to hook up with Matt Hume of AMC for a full camp. It's just me in Auburn up here at Vision Quest. It's a bunch of new guys I'm working with. It's pretty incredible. It's been a lot of fun. Even though Matt (Hume) couldn't be here, it was just one of those situations. Man, I wish one of these days, I'm going to give AMC and Matt Hume two solid months to train, but I haven't had that luxury.

When the call came to rematch Faber, Pulver was a little hesitant because of the time frame and the distraction of his close friend's death.

The opponent, I was more than happy, he explained. I'm like great. With my son, and with my friend being murdered when I say friend, Justin and I go way back when we were 16. He moved out to Iowa and lived with me. It was real hard to lose him. He was somebody I was real, real close to. More than anything, I was hoping to have the holidays and everything, because I knew I wasn't going to have a full-on six days a week to train.

"I would have loved to have it in March. I love the opponent. Can I do it in March? They said no and that they needed it in January, so that was the only hesitation was just the timing. You got to do what you got to do. No complaining, no excuses.

Even though the training camp was shortened, it provided a much-needed escape for Pulver after all that happened recently. The training was more of an escape this time more than ever. It was more of a time to really vent and get the workouts going.

Pulver had run into some tough fights lately, dropping a five-round decision to Faber, and losing quickly to Leonard Garcia after being hit hard with some big shots early in the first round. Learning from his mistakes, he has some things that he's worked on to make sure that it doesn't happen again.

I'm going to duck a few more times and I'm going to throw a few more punches," he told MMAWeekly.com. "I'm not just going to stand there and allow him to hit me. I'm going to move around. I have some things that I want to work on and some things that I want to get done. It's just going to be up to me to get out there and do it.

Losing two out of his last three in the WEC, Pulver feels like this fight is a now-or-never fight that can propel his career back into the limelight. My back is against the wall. It seems like everybody is checking their watch and watching the last few grains of sand left and then the time's up. That's how I look at it. The truth is that I can only do one thing and show them that I'm still game.

When it all comes down to it for a guy like Jens Pulver, it's all about doing what you love for who you love. In this case, he loves to fight and he loves to fight for his fans.

I love them! Pulver said about the fans. They are the only reason I'm doing this. It ain't making me rich. I ain't comfortably sitting back in the luxury cars or anything. I'm doing this because this is my job. This is what I love to do.

"It's the fans that I love to speak to. It's the people I get to meet. It's the cheering I get to hear. It's the booing I get to hear. It's all of it. I love being in the middle of it. I love MMA. I love being a mixed martial artist. I love fighting.
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