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The Samurai Returns: An Interview With ‘King of the Cage’ Prospect Gabe Sagman


(via King of the Cage)

By Brian J. D’Souza

The professional MMA landscape in Ontario is pretty barren due to a lack of shows, so what do talented fighters do in order to progress their careers? In the case of my Toronto BJJ teammates who fight MMA, just like previous generations of Ontario-based fighters, they end up having to travel in order to get fights.

One such individual is Gabe “Samurai” Sagman (1-1) who is heading 2700 kilometers (that’s 1468 miles for you yanks) to Calgary, Alberta to face Keegan Oliver (3-4) this Friday at King of the Cage: Wrecking Ball. Gabe last fought in November 2014, so he’s primed and ready to get his momentum back.

“For the past month and a half, I’ve been training really hard,” says Gabe.

Check out Brian’s full interview after the jump.

I have had a unique perspective, because I trained alongside Gabe at Toronto BJJ under MMA coach, former UFC veteran Claude Patrick.

One thing that makes Gabe special is that he’s a consummate professional at his trade, a man who coaches and teammates know they can expect to see show up time and time again. There’s no excuses, or story or evasion of the job at hand—just a record of nearly-perfect attendance.

Skilled in all areas of MMA, Gabe has a plan to dispatch Keegan Oliver.

“I want to get in there—ideally, use my movement, out-strike the guy. If there’s an opening for me to take him down, I’ll take it. Obviously my strength is on the ground,” says the Ribeiro BJJ brown belt.

As MMA fighters have morphed into athletes, the conditioning routine Gabe follows outside of his Muay Thai, wrestling or jiu-jitsu training is also worth noting. Working out with his brother, Reuben, Gabe does an impressive array of exercises designed to give him a mix of strength and explosiveness.

What I learned from Gabe is that a person has to do the maximum preparation. It’s impossible to predict the future, but the harder you work, the luckier you get. He’s got the tools to win and that’s backed by his heart.

Says Gabe, “I’m putting on a great show, I’m coming to fight.”

Brian J. D’Souza is the author of the critically acclaimed book Pound for Pound: The Modern Gladiators of Mixed Martial Arts. You can check out an excerpt right here.

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