As we reported earlier this week, WEC officially announced that former featherweight champion Urijah Faber will make his highly-anticipated 135-pound debut at WEC 52: Faber vs. Mizugaki from The Pearl at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Nev. on Thursday, Nov. 11. The 31-year-old pound-for-pound great, who once held the featherweight title for over two years, makes the cut to bantamweight in search of his second world title reign. He’ll take on one of the division’s toughest in Japanese striking sensation Takeya Mizugaki.
“Urijah Faber’s debut at 135-pounds is something both fans and fellow fighters have been waiting to see,” WEC General Manager Reed Harris said. “His first fight in the division pits him against Mizugaki, who has fought the best-of-the-best at bantamweight. The main event, plus the Bowles-Fabiano, Grispi-Koch and Mendes-Vazquez fights, makes this a special night at the Palms.”
One of the top lighter weight fighters of all-time, former featherweight champion Urijah Faber has defeated some of the sport’s best names. From Jeff Curran to Jens Pulver to Raphael Assuncao, the 31-year-old served as the 145-pound kingpin for over two years. Now, “The California Kid” has his sights set on winning a championship in the loaded bantamweight division. Up first for the Sacramento, Calif. native is Takeya Mizugaki, one of the division’s most talented athletes.
“I’m excited to take this fight at 135-pounds and test myself against the best bantamweights in the world,” Faber, who owns a record of 23-4, said. “Mizugaki is really tough, but I’m ready to make an impact and work toward becoming a champion again.”
Japanese star Takeya Mizugaki burst onto the scene last year, waging a five-round war with then-champion Miguel Angel Torres. Since that time, the 26-year-old has become one of the most feared bantamweights in the world. Having defeated Rani Yahya in his last fight in April, Mizugaki (13-4-2) is prepared to rudely welcome Faber to the 135-pound weight class.
“I never shy away from tough fights, so I’m excited to fight Urijah,” Mizugaki, who holds a master’s degree in electrical engineering, said. “Urijah’s first fight in this division won’t be an easy one. I plan on beating him on Nov. 11.”