5 area MMA fighters face off in 4 UFC fights at Sleep Train

5:04 PM, Dec 12, 2013   |    comments
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Five mixed martial arts fighters from the Central Valley will be on full display when the UFC returns to Capitol City Saturday night at Sleep Train Arena.

The co-main event will feature two of those local fighters in a regional battle when Urijah Faber (29-6) faces Modesto's Michael McDonald (16-2).

The "California Kid," who is on a three-fight win streak, still remains one of biggest names in the division with the Bantamweight title still in limbo.

"I feel like I still have the most clout in the weight class," Faber told News10 during Wednesday's Open workouts. "Guys want to test themselves and build off my name."

And that's the hope for 22-year-old McDonald who is looking for his second straight victory, and to put his name back in contention after losing to interim champion Barao in February.

Faber's "Alpha Male" teammate Joseph Benavidez (19-3) will fight Demertrious Johnson (18-2-1) for the UFC Flyweight title, which is headlining the Sacramento card. This is the second time the pair has met after Benevidez lost to Johnson for the inaugural Flyweight belt in September of 2012.

Since his lost to Johnson, Benavidez has won three straight fights and comes into Saturday's championship bout with a different mindset.

"I really look at this fight as just another day," a very calm and relaxed Benavidez said. "The last one, I really went in and tried too hard because my mind was on 100 percent something else, my mind was on the result and not what was right in front of me."

Chad "Money" Mendes (15-1), who is on a fou- fight win streak, will also fight on the main card against Nik Lentz (26-5-2) who has quietly compiled a three-fight win streak in the UFC.

"It is a dangerous fight for me," Mendes explained. "He uses his stand up to close the distance and rush you against the cage, muscles you down to the ground, and grind out decisions. Those types of guys can be difficult to fight sometimes."

Danny "Last Call" Castillo (16-5) will look to extend his winning streak to three when he faces an extemely dangerous Edson Barboza (12-1). Castillo looks at the fight as a huge opportunity to put himself back in contention.

"It is a perfect example for me to show the world how good I am and how much I progressed and how far I have come as a mixed martial artist," Castillo said.

The UFC Sacramento card is Saturday, Dec. 14 at Sleep Train Arena.

KXTV News10

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