Monday, February 12, 2007

Marquardt fights outside spotlight

By Steve Sievert

Nate Marquardt is mired in the middleweight shuffle.

Despite a 4-0 record in the Ultimate Fighting Championship and 28 pro victories in mixed martial arts, Marquardt has yet to get his ticket punched for a UFC title fight.

After his last performance in the octagon, however, the wait might finally be over.

At Ultimate Fight Night 8 in January, Marquardt dominated submission specialist Dean Lister, knocking him around the cage en route to a unanimous-decision victory. Demonstrating a potent stand-up attack, Marquardt sent Lister to the mat five times in the fight, leading two judges to score the mismatch 30-25.

"That was one of the best-executed game plans I've ever seen," said Greg Jackson, who trains Marquardt out of his Albuquerque, N.M., camp. "He went out and played his game and kept Lister from his. That's what fighting is all about."

Winning is what the 27-year-old Marquardt is all about. A pro since 1999, Marquardt owned the middleweight division of Pancrase, a Japan-based MMA organization, earlier in his career. He's the only fighter to be a seven-time King of Pancrase champion.

Marquardt jumped to the UFC in 2005 and has yet to be challenged in four fights. But while other middleweights such as Chris Leben and Mike Swick have had the bright lights of The Ultimate Fighter reality show to build a following, Marquardt's time in front of the cameras has been limited.

(Read More)

No comments: