Julio Arce Ready for UFC 244
By Edward Carbajal
Julio Arce (16-3) has been training a long time, long enough that being in New York meant he would have to travel far to pursue his dream to be a professional fighter in the sport of mixed martial arts. As of 2016, the ban on the sport was lifted and the 18 year Tiger Shulman martial arts student and UFC featherweight is making his second appearance in Madison Square Garden’s arena with the UFC at UFC 244. Fighting out of Queens, New York Arce seems more than ready to get back in the cage.
Speaking with Frontproof Media, Arce commented on the talent in New York that had to hit the road, so being able to compete in an MMA ruleset close to home is exciting. “Why is it taking so long?” Arce said he would wonder before the ban was lifted, “I fought a couple of times in the city [New York City], but it was kickboxing rules, MMA wasn’t allowed.”
While UFC 244 will not be his first fight in Madison Square Garden having competed in kickboxing and golden gloves there before, he does not plan to have any nerves or jitters come November 2. It also helps, that he won’t be alone as other fighters under the Tiger Shulman mixed martial arts (TSMMA) lineage are fighting on the same card. Arce will be returning to The Garden along with UFC welterweight Lymon Good and number 12-ranked featherweight Shane Burgos. “The boys are back in town!,“ Arce said and if anyone from the northeast region knows anything about fighters from TSMMA, is that the support for them comes in droves when they fight in New York or New Jersey.
Arce will be facing Hakeem Dawodu (10-1-1) at UFC 244 and a win over him would certainly be great, but that is not what martial arts is about according to Arce. He plans on winning, but if hype comes along with a win or not, “I’m just going to keep doing my thing,” Arce said of what could come afterward. “If you want to support me through my journey, go for it. I just want to be the best I can be and make it all the way to the top.”