Thoughts on opponent, LC Davis? I think LC is tough opponent. He's in the game for a long time, and has a lot of experience in MMA.
Training: 7am cardio session for 30-45 min and stretch. 12 pm MMA training (mixed: one day jiu-jitsu, other day boxing, and another day wrestling). Then nap for an hour. 8pm working on techniques of boxing, wrestling or jiu-jitsu.
When and why did you start training for fighting? I turned pro in 2002. I had trained in sambo, judo and kickboxing in 1998.
What ranks and titles have you held Reality Fighting lightweight Champion, NABC lightweight Champion, 2007 IFL Champion. Four stripe brown belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
Do you have any heroes? My Mother
What is your favorite technique? Wrist Lock
What does it mean for you to fight in the WEC? The best organization at this time for the 145 lb division. It means a lot for me to fight the best guys in this show.
Did you go to college and if so what degree did you earn? I earned an associate’s degree in Business Administration
What was your job before you started fighting? Professional Rugby Player
Most memorable professional fight (who, where, why)? My first Fight against Mike Acosta in 11/9/02 in Atlantic City. It was the beginning of a new career
What was your most challenging professional fight (against who, when, what was the outcome)?My first fight against Mike Acosta. At that time I had only two months experience in jiu-jitsu. I lost the fight by decision. The guy I fought was a purple belt in jiu-jitsu and was a Muay Thai instructor. Then I realized that my professional rugby background gave me good fundamentals for MMA.
Did you compete in any other sport(s) at college or professional level (what sport, where, how long)? Yes, I started playing Rugby when I was 12 years old and played on Lithuanian National Rugby Team. Also played for Russia for few years. In 2001 our Lithuanian team came to United States and became champions in Rugby Tournament in Washington D.C. This year was the end of my rugby career.
Who were your training partners for this fight? I’m training in my own gym TAURUS MMA, located in Farmingdale, New York. A lot of jiu-jitsu Black belts are coming to help me out for this fight. George Walton is my boxing coach who’s helping me to improve my stand up. Vougar Oroudjov is my wrestling coach.
Did you put more emphasis towards a fighting style or adjust your training to prepare for your opponent (what did you do differently/why)? I haven’t changed anything particularly, I’m just training hard as I usually prepare for every fight. I’m working on everything (stand up, ground, wrestling and so on) and trying to stay injury free before the fight.
What, other than WINNING, are you using for motivation for the fight? To show proof of my hard work and training and become a champion of the featherweight division.
What is your favorite thing about this sport? There are so many techniques and arts involved in this sport and you must know each aspect in order to win
How long do you see yourself staying in this sport? As long as my body and soul lets me to.