It took Carlo Prater 10 years to get into the UFC. And, now that he’s had a taste of the Octagon, he hopes it isn’t another 10 before he gets back.
Prater, a veteran of MMA since 2002, was released by the UFC last year after a pair of decision losses. He has since went 1-1 in two fights in Japan and Brazil, with another bout scheduled for later this month in Legacy Fighting Championship against Carlos Diego Ferreira.
The bout is set as the main event of Legacy FC 20 in Corpus Christi, Texas. Ferreira is 6-1 in his MMA career.
Having felt the fame and fortunes of the UFC, Prater told FightLine.com recently that his plans include getting back into the promotion as soon as possible.
“UFC or bust,” said Prater, who holds wins over fighters like Carlos Condit, Melvin Guillard and Pat Healy in his career. “I KNOW I can fight and win and contend in there. I just need to get back there. That is a fight by fight, training session by training session, day by day process.”
Prater won 29 of his first 40 professional bouts, including five straight, to secure a contract with the UFC for a 2012 fight with Erick Silva. Prater won that bout – via disqualification – but was defeated by both TJ Grant and Marcus LeVesseur later in the year.
After his release, Prater (31-13-1) took on Kuniyoshi Hironaka in Japan and was bested, but rebounded this past January to submit Sebastian Latorre in Brazil as part of the Fight Now Championship league.
“I know how good I am and (I) just need to focus in on each moment and every battle and give my all to each thought and action when I’m in there,” Prater said. “The rest will just work its self out. I try to dwell on that nowadays.”
With black belts in Brazilian jiu-jitsu and Luta Livre, along with a judo brown belt, it is obvious Prater has the skills to compete. He has adopted a motto of “shut up and train” because “you’re never as good as your friends tell you (that) you are.”
Nothing has been set as far as his future following the Ferreira fight, but Prater does feel that “the best is yet to come.”
“I am not satisfied yet,” he added. “I know I haven’t shown my true ability yet.”