How a fight with his brother over alcohol led Abdul Kamara to a career in MMA

Abdul Kamara
Photo: Abdul Kamara

Some of the most interesting stories in MMA tend to be origin stories, and this one is no different. A fight with a family member put Abdul Kamara as a successful MMA prospect on the verge of something big.

Kamara, 31, is the newest bantamweight killer from The MMA Lab, located in Glendale, Arizona. The gym has several UFC bantamweight categories, including familiar names like Sean O’Malley, Mario Bautista, Casey Kenny and Kyler Phillips. They also have upcoming prospects who will likely head to the UFC with a few more wins – like Marcus McGee and Kamara.

A fight was never in the cards for Abdul ‘Scratch’ Kamara. He was a track star from a young age, which led him to pursue the sport in college. However, like many college athletes, there comes a time when you have to look in the mirror and answer that uncomfortable question, “is this going to be my career?”

Track wasn’t the answer for Kamara.

“After college, I realized, man, these kids are damn fast. I’m kind of average in the track world, to be honest,” Camara told Cageside Press recently during an exclusive interview. “I realized that I won’t be able to qualify for the Olympics, and I don’t like being average. So I thought, ‘Man, I’ve got to find a different sport to try to be great at.’

He didn’t even know that mixed martial arts would be that sport.

“Me and my little brother, this time we had a party at my house and he was trying to drink at my house. I do not drink alcohol. I have never tasted alcohol. So I told him he can’t drink in my house,” Kamara said. “So he got mad at me, and he was an amateur MMA fighter at the time. So when I told him he couldn’t drink, he got really mad and swung at me!

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“I slipped his jab and dropped him with the hook. And then I told him, anything you can do, I can do better. The next week I joined a gym and my journey to fighting began.

Kamara trained for two weeks and then took his first amateur fight, which he won. After this fight, he decided he was a fighter.

The 31-year-old fighter holds a professional record of 5-1 with three finishes. Most recently, he competed in Jorge Masvidal’s new promotion, iKON FC, where he defeated another rising prospect in Jose Torres on ten days’ notice by unanimous decision.

Kamara returns to action on February 5th at Fury FC 74. He revealed that he has signed a multi-fight contract with the Texas-based promotion and believes his rise through the promotion will lead to his call-up to the UFC in 2024.

“I get the call in Kobe [Bryant] year – 2024!”

“When I get into the UFC next year, it’s going to be one of those moments where you’re like, ‘man, we’ve come this far,'” Kamara said. “I beat all the odds because nobody expected me to go this far because I wasn’t born to be a fighter. Everyone counted me out. I stutter and everyone thought I was dumb, but, you know, we keep pushing. And every day is a battle.”

“I want to be the first fighter from my country, Sierra Leone, to compete in the UFC. I want to write a story now. I want to be the first person in my family to become a millionaire. I will try to do it. I have two children, for whom I try to be an example – never give up on your dream, no matter what anyone tells you. I work more than 40 hours every week and go to training two or three times a day, just trying to chase my dream to show my two children that it is possible. And I’ll do it.”

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Abdul Kamara returns to action against Shane Torres at Fury FC 74 on February 5, exclusively on UFC Fight Pass.

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