At the end of the 12th century, Samurai were considered the most skilled warriors in Japan's army.
Nine centuries later, the only physical reminders of the Bushi -- as they were also known -- reside in museums; the mentality -- that continues to permeate. Perhaps no one signifies the moniker better than UFC fighter Louis Smolka -- deemed the "The Last Samurai" by a former coach.
"It was given to me because I would never give up and I would just always try to win." says Smolka. "It was kind of my fighting spirit I guess. I do take a lot of pride in that."
Smolka's version of a Katana blade can be found between his ears. The Kapolei native's mind is a weapon that has resulted in a perfect 7-0 (five submissions and 2 KO's) professional MMA record.
His timing couldn't be any better either. The UFC's flyweight division is a relatively new arena. Competitors have been feasting on one another, meaning another victory for Smolka could propel him into a top-10 ranking in a division that is in constant flux.
Of course there's also the possibility of becoming the UFC's youngest champion ever.
"Jon Jones did it when he was 23-years old and 242-days or something. I'm 22 right now and turn 23 in July, so I think I have a decent shot at it."
Standing in the way, is Chris Cariaso (16-5). A 32-year old southpaw with a Muay Thai back ground. Smolka and Cariaso will kick off the main card for UFC's Fight Night this Saturday. It will be live at 4pm Hawaii time and can be seen on Fox Sports 1.
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