UFC: There’s not a lot of fighters from either Alaska or Serbia. How does it feel to represent those two regions?
UM: It’s a big thing for me and the team of Anchorage Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. They’re with me today and this weekend. It’s a really big thing.
Coming from a small country, Serbia, it’s not very big in the UFC. We only have a handful of fighters. To represent, it means a lot to me. I get to carry my flag and proudly represent my country where I grew up and where I come from. How well-raised I am or what kind of family I come from, that’s one of the most important things to me; to represent what I am and what I stand for. That’s being a professional athlete, being a good human being, a friend, a son, a family member. Those are the things that I take a lot of pride in.
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Representing Alaska, they took me in as a family member. I moved there and I didn’t know many people. I joined a gym and they kind of slowly accepted me and took me in. They’ve been taking great care of me for over five years now. I’m very thankful to have met these kinds of people in my life. It could have gone the other way. I could meet bad people and not be so lucky. Not everybody gets the chance to be raised by a decent family, go to school, you know? I had my second family, my Anchorage family, to back me up and we did some good things. We moved forward, we achieved what we’ve planned for years. I’m very confident and very proud to be representing Serbia and Anchorage.