“One of my biggest passions in this world is showing people how to accomplish exactly that,” he said. “Professional athletes, whether you’re in the NBA, MLB, NFL or the UFC, whatever that looks like, there’s a very, very small window.”
He pauses, then chuckles, saying “I’m not saying I have it figured out.”
He may. Despite having ten UFC fights, seven Octagon wins and a stint on The Ultimate Fighter under his belt, Krause has never taken his spot on the roster for granted and never looked at it as a lifetime lock when it came to job security.
“I think the problem with some of these new kids is that they feel like they’re owed something,” Krause said. “The UFC doesn’t owe me s**t. We’re in a business relationship and that relationship is, you pay me a good amount of money for me to bust heads. You know I’m gonna be in an exciting fight, and that’s why I’ve been on the roster for six years. If you think there’s anything outside of that, you’re dead wrong. I understand that relationship, they understand the relationship with me, and it works great. It’s the fight game and that’s what it’s about.”
It may be the best possible place for James Krause to be in at 33. His life outside the UFC in business and with his family is settled, he’s got a passion for coaching that he’s constantly feeding, and the last five times he’s entered the Octagon, he left with his hand raised. So what’s next?
“I’m a competitor,” Krause said. “I’m not going to be fighting that much longer. I’m better than I’ve ever been. But it’s not about that. You cannot disrespect the game of MMA. If you disrespect the game of MMA, the game will disrespect you far greater, I promise. So I’m in my physical prime, but I’m a weird spot because I don’t really have aspirations to be a world champion. I’ve already set out and hit every goal that I’ve ever wanted to in MMA. I did that a long time ago in terms of being a fighter. So when you ask me, why fight, the short answer is, I’m still a competitor and I still feel like I have things to bring to the table that I can show people. I don’t think I’ll be doing it much longer, but it’s something that I really enjoy. I still enjoy that process, that grind, and challenging yourself. It’s the ultimate challenge as a human being. There’s nothing else like it in the world.”