Coming off The Ultimate Fighter Redemption season, James Krause has no intention of fighting again this year. He beat Tom Gallicchio in the TUF Finale which marked his 4th fight of the year.
He recently closed in on a new building for his gym, Glory MMA and Fitness and looks to focus his time and attention on it for the rest of the year.
“I really don’t have any interest in fighting right now,” Krause said speaking exclusively to The Sports Journal. “I just finished up the gym and I really want to focus my energy and effort on the gym for the rest of the year.”
“I had four fights this year which is the most I’ve had in quite some time and two of those fights were six days apart and both of them my brain took a bashing. I’m really in no hurry in getting my skull hit in again so I would really like to take the rest of the year off and just focus on my personal life and business.”
Going into The Ultimate Fighter, he was the only current active UFC fighter on the show and was a heavy favourite going in. He submitted Johnny Nunez in the first round, outlasted Ramsey Nijem in the quarterfinals but fell short to Jesse Taylor in the semi-finals.
Despite not winning the show, Krause has no regrets and feels like he gained a lot from the experience.
“I just feel like if you can make it through that you can make it through a lot of things,” Krause said on TUF. “There are so many different scenarios that get thrown your way and I felt like if you could make it through that, you will have experienced so much more difficulty in fighting than you would leading up to a one fight camp.”
“Obviously for the exposure I felt like it was great for my career. I think there are multiple ways to win that show not just winning the competition and I feel like I took advantage of those things and I really do feel like it paid off for me.”
Jesse Taylor, who ended Krause’s journey on the show, was recently flagged by USADA for a potential failed drug test. When asked if the situation frustrated him, Krause insisted that it wouldn’t have changed anything.
“I’m indifferent on it,” Krause said. “Obviously he’s due his day in court if you will but honestly it makes no difference to me. I didn’t lose that fight because of him being on anything, I lost that fight because I was half dead already the fight before. I was battling a staph infection, I couldn’t see out of one eye and those aren’t excuses but these are just things that play into the Ultimate Fighter experience.”
And even if Taylor was using during their fight, the nature of the show and hard fought battles had already taken a toll on Krause.
“They’re definitely not excuses, I don’t take anything away from Jesse Taylor, he played a very good game, his style is conducive for winning that show, the small cage favours his style and he’s obviously a very skilled opponent. I’m not going to take anything away from his win over me in terms of PEDs or whatever because I don’t feel like it made a difference in our fight.”
Now two months later, Krause has been offered a fight against Francisco Trinaldo in São Paulo on October 28th but he turned it down. He took a month off training and doesn’t really have any desire to fight again this year.
Having fought at lightweight throughout his UFC career and at welterweight throughout his Ultimate Fighter journey, Krause is not ready to commit to a specific weight class just yet.
“I am kind of back and forth on it,” Krause explained. “I just got offered a fight at 155 and I kind of turned it down not because of the weight but like I said I just don’t want to fight right now. I’m back and forth, I really am. I’m a pretty big 155er, the 155 cut is pretty difficult for me to make and I really don’t feel like I’m undersized at 170 so I’m not really sure.”
For now, he will focus on his gym and coaching his fighters. The likes of Zak Cummings, Megan Anderson and Tim Elliott all train with Krause as he has taken a real passion for helping his teammates.
“I really don’t feel like my mark is going to be made in fighting. I feel like I’m an entrepreneur at heart and I feel like that’s where I excel. That and I really do believe that at one point in the next five years or so I’m going to be one of the best coaches in MMA.”
“I’m a far better coach than I am a fighter. I’m building people right now, I’m coaching Megan Anderson, Grant Dawson who just got in the UFC, Tim Elliott, and I help with Zak Cummings. I’m coaching all these people while still fighting so I have 4 people in the UFC while still competing. Imagine what I can do whenever I can fully commit to coaching.”