Hector Lombard exclusively for Fight Site: Stipe Miočić is a beast!
In 2011 he was considered to be the only man on the planet who could beat the unbeatable Anderson Silva. He spread fear and terror in the middleweight category not only in Bellator but also in its rival UFC where many saw him in the future. Despite being an Olympic judoka, he scored most of his victories via KO and had 25 consecutive victories at some point. He is Hector Lombard from Cuba and “one of the most hated UFC fighters”, as he likes to say.
Now, a couple of years later, the world still have not seen the match between Lombard and Silva. The situation is a bit different with fighters such as Chris Weidman on top. However, despite the two losses since he joined the elite ranks, Lombard is still an unwelcomed opponent. He is so unwanted that the UFC has to look for fighters who want to fight him in rival promotions.
Why? His winning streak might be broken, but he is still a large force in the middleweight division and every fighter's nightmare. He looks incredibly strong and his judo and wrestling techniques, athleticism, unstoppable aggression and winner mentality make a deadly combo no one in the UFC wants to see on the opposite side of the Octagon.
Hector Lombard will do his sixth UFC match January 4 at UFC 182 and his opponent will be Josh Burkman. In an exclusive interview for Fight Site, Lombard revealed many interesting facts in the eve of his new match and forecasted his victory as well as a title match in which he will try to steal the belt from Weidman in 2015.
Your match at UFC 182 was almost cancelled. The reason is bizarre. No one wants to fight you. How does that make you feel?
“It bothers me. I'm sorry that guys turned the big boss down to fight. How could you say no to your boss? But either way, I'm fighting next week, that's the only thing that matters and that's all I can focus on now.”
Do you really think that you are the most hated guy in the UFC, as you said some days ago?
“Yes, I believe that I am the most hated guy in the UFC, when it comes to my opponents. But it’s an issue I've dealt with my whole life. If you really took the time to know me, you'd love me.”
At the end a veteran Josh Burkman stepped in. How much do you know about him?
“Josh Burkman is good, he's been around. Every fighter needs to be respected. Anything can happen in the cage. But I will make a sweet highlight January 4th, when I knock him out. You can be sure in that. Period!”
Burkman recently fought and defeated Fitch and Simpson. Is that a warning?
“Fitch is boring and his thing is strictly wrestling, I wasn't impressed by Burkman’s win in that match. To be honest, I was not impressed by his victory over Simpson either.”
When you look back at your Bellator period and you try to make some parallels with UFC… What's the basic difference? Does it feel similar or totally different?
“Bellator is completely different from UFC, the level of fighters is different the amount of fights you get is different. Night and day! But what I miss the most from Bellator was the fact that I was able to fight every 4 months. It is not possible in the UFC.”
Since you came in the UFC you lost two fights via split decision. Do you regret it because otherwise you would probably be a first contender at the moment?
“Every fighter suffers a loss or two. That's normal. That was my loss or two. Got it off now. Now I'm looking forward to another endless career of wins! Honestly, I believe the judges don't understand what we do or how it works. This is a new sport. I think every judge should be skilled in an MMA profession. You don’t hire someone to make executive decisions in your personal corporation unless they have the experience and degrees to back it up. Why would this profession be any different?”
Among all your former opponents, who do you respect the most?
“Probably Alexander Shlemnko or Jake Shields. Honestly, I respect all my opponents.”
What do you think about things at Bellator at the moment? They seem a little lost.
“Bellator is still doing their thing… Not sure why you say they are lost. They got good fighters there.”
Fight Channel and Fight Site are Croatian media. What do you know about Croatian fighters?
“Man, I give all fighters serious respect, no matter where they are from. This is a major, serious sport. We all go hard. But I do know there are very few Croatia fighters, Stipe is a beast! He is good!!“
Stipe Miočić recently fought JDS. Did you watch this fight and what can you say about Stipe?
“That was a great fight!!!! They both went hard, but that's what your supposed to do in the cage. We train for months to go in a cage and hurt our opponent. I'd like to see a rematch. Stipe has a great future in the UFC!!””
Of course, your ultimate goal is the UFC belt. When can we expect it to be around your waist?
“I want to fight at least 4-5 times in 2015. What a way to start… I will get the belt next year!! 2015 will be my year!”