BOSTON -- Urijah Faber is on a bit of a career treadmill at the moment. The former WEC featherweight champion meets Yuri Alcantara in a bantamweight bout on Saturday at UFC Fight Night at TD Garden.
After that? Well, 135-pound champion Dominick Cruz is still injured and interim champ Renan Baro is coming off an injury of his own. So Faber has an idea in mind to keep himself relevant while the championship situation sorts itself out.
"I would like to have some big fights in the feature," Faber said at Wednesday’s open workouts. "I’m going to talk to Dana and Lorenzo and see if we can set up some superfights. Maybe go up to 145 and do some stuff. I feel like I need to be in some fights that really matter. Kind of, but we’re focusing on my fight."
Faber (28-6) wouldn’t put a name to his "superfight" idea. But the way he sees it, as one of the few fighters at the lighter weight classes capable of carrying the top of the bill, "The California Kid" is at a point in his career where he can’t just keep taking fights for their own sake.
"I don’t think you take the belt away from Dominick," said Faber, who has finished Ivan Menjivar and Scott Joregensen in his past two fights. "He’s earned what he’s got, and when he comes back in the picture, everyone is going to want to see him fight a top guy. it’s the same position I’ve been in. By losing a title fight, you want to see me fight a No. 1 contender. You don’t want me to fight someone who doesn’t matter."
None of this talk is to in any way imply Faber is taking his opponent Saturday night lightly. While the American public might not know much about Alcantara (28-4, 1 no-contest), a 33-year-old native of Marajo, Brazil, his record speaks for itself: His two dozen career finishes include a 2010 WEC knockout of current featherweight hotshot Ricardo Lamas.
Asked if Alcantara is overmatched, Faber disagreed.
"Popularity-wise you can make a good case, but, I mean, Ricardo Lamas is ranked No. 3 in the world at 145, he knocked him out," Faber said. "Omigawa he beat pretty decisively, so at the weight class he has one of the best records in the weight class and he has 24 finishes."