<div class="Article" style="float: left;"> <table> <tr style="vertical-align: bottom;"> <td> <h3><a href="/go=news.detail&gid=231146" target="_blank"> Gamburyan says Brown in the way of his title shot </a></h3> </td> </tr> </table> <a href="/go=news.detail&gid=231146" ><img class="photo" src="http://img.mixedmartialarts.com/method=get&rs=76&q=75&x=2&y=14&w=310&h=165&ro=0&s=manny-gamburyan.jpg" /></a> <strong class="ArticleSource">[heavy.com]</strong> <div style="clear: both; line-height: 1px;height: 1px;"> </div> </div> <blockquote>
Heavy MMA caught up with WEC featherweight Manny Gamburyan as he prepares for perhaps the most important fight of his career when he takes on Mike Brown at WEC 48 on April 24 at Arco Arena in Sacramento.
Heavy MMA: Despite being ranked the 8th best featherweight in the world by Sherdog, do you feel you still have something to prove in your upcoming fight against Mike Brown?
Manny Gamburyan: Most definitely. I can be ranked No. 8 in the world but those numbers don’t mean anything. A win puts me in line for a title shot. That’s my goal, to be featherweight champion. First I have to get past Mike Brown for a chance at the belt. Obviously, I have to step up my game because Mike Brown is a gamer. I have to bring my A-game because he’s the ex-champion. I’m prepared and I’m going to go out there and try to destroy him.
Heavy MMA: You have won your first two fights since dropping down from lightweight. Does 145 pounds feel like where you are most comfortable as a fighter?
Manny Gamburyan: Yes, I should have been there for a long time but I started at 155. It’s not the weight cutting that a problem it’s just that I thought I could never make 145. Now that I know I can I feel good, I feel strong. I feel like I have found a home now so I’m staying at 145 and going after that belt.
Heavy MMA: What made you decide to make the switch from lightweight to featherweight?
Manny Gamburyan: It was after I fought Thiago Tavares. At the end of the fight I was like 160 pounds and he was like 185. I said to myself I shouldn’t be at 155, I’m too small for 155. My promoter Joe Silva wanted me to drop to 145 and I told him I would think about it. I talked to my friends, my coaches and my family and we all thought I could do it. I just had to work out a little more. Now I’m happy at 145 and I’m looking forward to my next fight.
Heavy MMA: After your family came to the US from Armenia, you started studying Judo. What drew you to that discipline of Martial Arts?
Many Gamburyan: Judo is just one part of Martial Arts. When I got into MMA I had to start learning other things as well. I don’t do as much Judo as I used to. I don’t compete anymore in tournaments or anything like that but Judo means a lot to me. That’s my base and that’s where my roots come from. But at the end of the day this is MMA, and you have to mix it up with boxing, kick boxing, Muay Thai – a little bit of everything.