Taking steps forward with each and every new day is a requirement in the sport of MMA as the landscape of things is always changing ever so vastly. And while some of those involved are taking their steps into the future, others may be able to do so at a more rapid or multi-faceted pace.
It’s a process getting to where one hopes to be, no matter the end goal. But even as much as that goal may be the driving force behind all the hard work, the journey to it must be enjoyed. It might not be something that is known in the beginning and more so something that is learned over time. UFC welterweight and Glory MMA & Fitness head coach James Krause can attest to that and preaches to his fighters to remember to do so.
For the 33-fight veteran in Krause, he currently rides the best streak of his UFC career as he has won five straight with his most recent win coming in a big upset over Warlley Alves in August 2018. Despite the success he’s having in his personal fighting career, there’s a lot more going on for one of Lee’s Summit’s finest.
Along with coaching and fighting, Krause has found himself dabbling into the real estate world thus showing that fighters can never be too busy. Don’t worry, Al Iaquinta, he has no desire in being an agent.
“I’ve been into real estate for, I don’t know, I bought my first house, outside of the one I live in, obviously… I think I bought that in 2014,” Krause told The Body Lock.
“So since then, I’ve kind of, I guess, navigated towards that. [Just] trying to build that part of my portfolio, if you will. But I think it’s a good thing for everybody, you know? It’s something that people pay down your bills for you. I’m really getting into Airbnb because I like the ability to make adjustments and I get my listing higher and get more money than I potentially would with a regular vendor.”
At a still relatively young 32-years-old with all of his experience considered, Krause acts as a shining example of how fighters can fully utilize their talents mid-career. Whether ranging all over the world of MMA to obviously outside of it as well.
In addition to what he already does, analyst and commentary work have found its way to the Glory mastermind’s resume as well. Although, Krause admits that with everything else on his plate that those duties come fewer and far between these days but it is indeed a hobby to be considered down the road.
Recently awarded with his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt, the James Krause continues on forward making positive movements throughout his journey. Always an amazing accomplishment for a fighter, it was just about that time for Krause.
The same could be said for his last fight with Alves where he was seen as a sizeable underdog. Initially, the former lightweight competitor wasn’t too surprised but the margin in which he was counted out by is what caught him off guard. The time was now to gain proper recognition.
“I was the underdog, I knew I would be though,” Krause said. “Going up in weight against a guy like Warlley Alves, [who] has a win over [Colby] Covington, beat guys [like] Nordine Taleb, he has some good wins you know what I mean? So like, of course, I was going to be the underdog. Now, wherever the odds came out and I was like plus 500 or something like that, I thought that was kind of a slap in the face. Cause I’ve been around the block with some of the OGs of the sport, some of the best that this sport’s ever produced. I feel confident saying I’ve fought some of the best guys on the planet Earth.”
“For me, when I see a guy that slows after one round, I look at that as a big weakness. So, I mean, our plan was like, if I’m going to come back, battered, bruised and bloody, I’m not easy to finish. Look at my whole career, I’m not an easy guy to finish. It doesn’t happen very often.”
As mentioned by the man himself, he doesn’t get finished very often at all as out of his seven career losses only three have come via finish. Two of which were submissions to Donald Cerrone and Toby Imada while the other was a very controversial TKO against Bobby Green.
Regardless, a now happy welterweight Krause went in calm, confident and relaxed knowing that he would just be doing his thing in the comfortable present.
“It was good, it felt really good,” Krause said of his win over Alves. “I was a big underdog and I knew it would be a tough fight, he’s a tough opponent, but I just felt like I matched up really well with him. I don’t particularly get beat up by the big power puncher – overhand right, left hook type guys. And I didn’t feel like he had the confidence to hang around with me for 15 minutes. I felt like fundamentally he was very weak. His footwork wasn’t good enough to hang with me. I just feel like he had some major holes that I was really good at exposing. Like I said, I thought fundamentally he wasn’t going to be able to keep up with me. I mean, I said that before and I think that came out. At 70 [pounds] I can go, I can hit the gas pump. I can just go for 15 minutes, no problem at 170 and I like that.
“At 55 [pounds] I find myself slowing down, I find myself looking at the clock, stalling the fight. At ’70, I can just go, man. I can hit the pedal and go and I don’t get tired at ’70. It felt like that was me, that was me out there, that was what you’re going to see. And I felt like that was the true, real version as me [and what I] bring to the table.
“I felt like that was a very, very good depiction of what I can do… Essentially to a top-level guy”
Just because the multi-talented James Krause is also a coach, it doesn’t mean that he doesn’t have a teacher to learn from himself. Although literally coaching himself would surely provide another fun challenge for the versatile Glory staple, he does, in fact, take notes from one of the very best in the game.
Attributing his good game planning to his coach, Factory-X leader Marc Montoya, Krause is just another one of the many fighters to sing Montoya’s praises in recent years as the gym continues to grow and flourish like never before.
“He’s done some really awesome things,” Krause said of Montoya. “He’s got a lot of fighters now doing some pretty incredible things. So I’m glad to be a part of that time before he got as big as he did.
“He’s a workhorse. No coach out there works like he works, they don’t work like him. They don’t obsess over the game like he does and they don’t demand the quality out of their fighters that he does. And I’ve seen him flat out tell people like, I’ve seen him tell dudes that have traveled all the way across the country that they come in and give a half-ass effort, I’ve seen him tell them get the fuck out of the gym on numerous occasions. If you don’t go in there day in and day out and give your best effort, he’s going to let you know about it. And I think what he does is… It’s not about jab cross hooks, and game planning and stuff. He’s very good at that stuff, but there’s a lot of people that are good at that. It’s about the leadership that he brings to the table that he is able to squeeze every ounce of greatness out of his fighter.
“When you go to fight for him, you want to win for him,” Krause continued. “You want to go to war for him and don’t want to disappoint him. Not because he puts pressure on you but because you know that he’s put so much time and energy and effort into planning your win. So for me, every time I go to fight, I want to win for him, myself, obviously, but he’s just very good at squeezing little amounts of greatness out of people that other coaches will not be able to get.”
As is the case with everything in life, everything that is learned from someone or somewhere has been learned before from something else and so on. It’s a chain reaction of knowledge and these lineages are common in the mixed martial arts world as well.
For coach James Krause, there’s definitely a unique spin on things that he likes to add to his style, but it would be very wrong to say that he doesn’t replicate or learn from the man who prepares him for battle.
“I take pieces from everybody, but more so than anything I see what works and I try to do it, I have my own sprinkle on stuff, but yeah, of course, I would be dumb not to [take from Montoya],” Krause said of his coaching style. “And him and I have a different type of relationship. He has played a big role… And this is not taking anything away from my father, but Marc is like a father to me. He plays that role in my life and I still love my father very much. [With Montoya], it just goes past fighter and coach. I pick stuff from him all the time and I think he takes little tidbits here and there for me as well.”
‘Enjoy the process’
A simple yet extremely effective motto when followed. With everything he does, James Krause just remembers to enjoy each and every step. Whether it’s punching someone in the face, helping someone else punch a different person in the face, or even purchasing homes… Live in the moment and have fun with it.
At this stage, the Newport News native isn’t going to be forced into taking fights when he doesn’t necessarily want to. When the time is right, he shifts his focuses.
With this past weekend’s UFC Wichita card in Kansas coming and going, in the leadup to it, Krause seemed like a logical fighter to see featured on the card. Offered to fight in Wichita, Krause would pass on the chance as he wanted to give his well earned full undivided attention to a pupil and promotional debutant, Grant Dawson who would end up securing the victory.
Krause now looks for potentially returning in the Summertime. Ultimately, whenever the time does end up coming, we’ll know that he’ll be doing it his way.
Drake Riggs is an MMA writer who specializes in feature pieces, the women's fight scene, lists, and rankings. He has been a passionate fan of MMA ever since 2009. Drake also currently writes for BJPenn.com, Fansided MMA, Cageside Press, and is a former contributor to Sherdog and MMA Today. He is also a die-hard fan of the NFL's Green Bay Packers and Jacksonville Jaguars.