Seven weeks out from Mitch Gagnon’s fight at UFC 165 he is confident to finish his opponent Dustin Kimura and have his hand raised inside the UFC octagon on Saturday September 21. The Sudbury, Ontario native is set to make his third appearance inside the octagon and is looking for his second win during his UFC career which would make him 10-3 in his pro MMA career. Kimura is currently undefeated in his pro career. You can watch their bout on the UFC prelims on Sportsnet 8PM/5PM ETPT
The two fighters addressed the crowd with two different types of positive demeanours. Gustafsson sat to the right of the podium looking refreshed and excited to talk about his upcoming opportunity. Tom Wright told the crowd that Gustafsson had spent yesterday relaxing at a local amusement park in the area. Jones sat to the right of the podium with his Light Heavyweight championship title to his left and a cup of coffee to his right admitting to feeling a little tired. Though he felt tired, he spoke to the crowd with enthusiasm, a sense of humour, and a smile. While the two fighters had opposing energies, there was a great level of respect shared between the two of them.
“Alexander Gustafsson is a guy who really wanted a shot at the title. And he’s a guy that I asked for. He asked for me, I asked for him,” Jones said before complimenting Gustafsson’s boxing and saying he was the the perfect opponent to face when attempting to surpass Tito Ortiz for the most consecutive title defenses at Light Heavyweight. Gustafsson showed Jones a similar level of respect saying, “I see the greatest test in my career. He’s the champion for a reason.”
While this press conference was designed to promote Jones vs Gustafsson at UFC 165, Jones was asked just as much about former UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva’s loss to Chris Weidman last Saturday night. After the fight, Jones tweeted out, “This sucks,” and further said at the press conference, “To see a great champion go down always sucks.” As result of the loss, Jones went up to top the pound for pound rankings, but Jones did not think too much of it saying, “To become number one because of Anderson’s lost doesn’t make me feel like I accomplished anything,” Jones looked at Silva’s loss more as a form of inspiration, telling the crowd, “It motivates me a lot to see someone like that lose.”
Jones dissected the Silva loss even further, saying the loss didn’t change his perception of the man many regard as the greatest mixed martial artist of all time and that Silva just made a mistake – “Anderson Silva is a magnificent fighter. I think he has an extraordinary gift. He’s comfortable with his gift. And he abused his gift. He disrespected the gift by disrespecting his opponent… He got disrespectful and the war gods made him pay for it.” He concluded his praise the former Middleweight Champion by saying, “He’s still that great Anderson Silva in my book.”
While Jones answered questions about Anderson Silva, Gustafsson talked about his road to becoming the number one contender for the Light Heavyweight championship. It was only three months ago that he felt his opportunity slipping through his fingers when he had to pullout of the main event of UFC on Fuel TV 9 in his home country of Sweden after suffering a cut just days before the fight. He explained the contrast of pulling out of one main event in his home country to competing for the Light Heavyweight Championship saying, “It was one of the worst experiences of my life. Now I just left it behind me now with my dream fight coming up.”
Johny Hendricks talks about UFC 167, punching GSP in the face, being a new father and Olympic Wrestling
MMAxposed was fortunate enough to partake in this past weekend’s fundraiser and charity event at ‘Woodbridge Heroes’ collectibles store in scenic Woodbridge, Ontario. The event was held in support of the Canadian Diabetes Association, the city of Vaughan food bank and SOS Children’s Villages.
The event, sponsored in part by Haymaker Fightwear, was a rousing success, raising much-needed funds for worthy charities and providing entertainment for children of all ages including super hero costumes and an exotic petting zoo.
Also featured were appearances from real-life superheroes in the form of some of the top names in MMA, including UFC #1 welterweight contender Johny “Bigg Rigg” Hendricks. Hendricks gave this exclusive interview to MMAxposed where he discusses the clash with GSP, becoming a father the day before, whether wrestling will be back in the Olympics and more. Watch as “Bigg Rigg” pulls no punches on any subject!
By Carlin Bardsley
Pro Fighter Chris Clements gives us a behind the scenes look into his home. Stay tuned for our upcoming video “Chris Clements on Cloud 9” which will take you further in depth into his life getting married, becoming a dad and making his UFC debut.
Follow Chris on Twitter @menaceclements
By: Matt Marcone
The greatest MMA fighter of all time has done it again.
After getting controlled by Chael Sonnen in the first round, Anderson Silva came back with a flurry in the second to earn knockout of the night. Sonnen missed a spinning back fist and ended up losing his balance, allowing the champion to take advantage.
The two rivals embraced each other during the post fight interviews, with Silva even offering to cook him some Brazilian barbeque.
“You always shake hands and you always leave it in the octagon,” says Sonnen, who relentlessly attacked Silva in the months leading up to the fight. “Those are the rules and I stick to them.”
Silva extends his UFC record to an unprecedented 15-0, while Sonnen says he does not take comfort knowing he almost beat the champ… twice.
“It’s pass or fail, that’s it,” says Sonnen. “He’s just a regular guy, we weigh the same thing and he finds a way to win. I admire it.”
Photo Slideshow of last night’s Bellator event. All photos by Randi Lotsberg