In his rematch last month with Mike Brown, Urijah Faber once again ended up on the wrong end of the fight with American Top Team fighter. The two went five rounds with Faber losing by unanimous decision.
That doesn't sound so out of the ordinary, until you realize that Faber broke his right hand in the first round then injured his left in the third, yet he still managed to finish the fight.
"It was during the first round. I hit him right on top of the head," he said of the injury that required surgery and the insertion of metal plates. "It wasn't until the third round that I hurt my left hand, though."
Many fighters would have cashed it in soon after the broken hand in the opening round, but not the former WEC featherweight champion.
"I just went back to the corner and told Master Thong, who is my Muay Thai trainer, 'my hand is broke, my hand is broke.' He told me to shut up, and he said, 'you're a champion,' and hit me in the heart. I wasn't planning on quitting, but it was heavy on my mind. When push came to shove, I don't have any quit in me."
The injury to his right hand was severe.
"The fourth and the fifth metacarpal were completely snapped. The fourth one was completely displaced. The fifth one ... I could feel the bones grind together, so what was happening is it was splintering away," he recounted. "They basically put in some steel plates and some screws (to help the healing process)."
With one fight left on his WEC contract, Faber isn't wasting any time sitting back and waiting for his hand to heal up on its own. He's gone to great lengths to move the process along.
"I'm a proactive person ... I'm trying to do all sorts of unconventional things and stuff that is gonna stimulate it. I'm getting the cast off early even though the bone's not gonna be healed, I'm gonna get a removal cast so I can start moving my hand and getting it better."
And when he is healed up, he wants to get right back into action. Of course, with one fight left on his contract, that's one more thing for him to focus on while he is healing up. But not only is Faber looking to extend his contract with the promotion he has helped build, he is pushing for WEC parent company Zuffa to start putting more focus on the UFC's sibling.
"What we have is a company that's growing right now; they're kind of putting that on the shoulders of some of the people. I feel like we should be looked at as investments," he commented. "If they're not making money right now, they're spending money on a lot of other stuff to help build their business and the fighters are part of that.
"I'd like a little bit more attention, money put into the WEC brand. It doesn't grow overnight, but they really should be making a big push. We've got a lot of guys that are extremely marketable. We've got the most exciting fights in the world for sure.
"I feel like I'm making a pretty good name for myself and I'd like to be compensated for this. I don't feel like being someone that is gonna build up something and not reap the rewards, but in all honesty, they do have the fighters interests in mind."
Faber isn't saying he wants to go elsewhere. Why would he? He's logged many hours building not only himself, but the WEC brand. Plus, he's got unfinished business with Mike Brown that he would eventually like to attend to.
"I think there's a future fight between us. I have a good shot at getting a title shot real soon down the road," he told MMAWeekly.com.
"So I'm hoping that we can reach a great agreement and I can keep fighting with the WEC because I love it there."