King Mo: “Pro Wrestling is harder than MMA”

On August 26, 2014 By

One of the best Light Heavyweights outside of the UFC, King Mo made an appearance on Submission Radio to talk about his fight at Bellator 123 and the last minute opponent change. Originally slated to face Tom Deblass, Lawal talked about facing Marcus Sursa, the new challenges that he brings, training at American Top Team, Scott Coker taking over Bellator, a rematch with Quinton Rampage Jackson, why pro wrestling is harder than mixed martial arts, TNA Impact wrestling’s future, and marking out around The Dudley Boyz, Roddy Piper, and The Great Muta.

Interview highlights below

On opponent change for Bellator 123

“Well here’s the thing, the opponent change don’t matter ’cause whoever’s gonna fight me, I’m fighting to knock ’em out. I promote violence, so I’m trying to go out there and do my damage and win the fight, you know what I’m saying? Promote violence.”

On what King Mo learned from the Rampage fight

“Well going into that fight, the things we worked on, everything we worked on got thrown out the window because I was slipping. like my stand up, I couldn’t keep my footing, my shots, I couldn’t shoot. Like I could shoot if he came forward, but it was just awkward because every time I’d shoot, and I gotta check at the corner, I would slide off of him. So the things I worked on I couldn’t really implement.”

“People that know MMA, know that I won the fight. It’s just I got people who don’t like me because I keep it real, I keep it one hundred, I’m a straight shooter and they don’t like that. They want me to be something I’m not, and those people were happy to see me lose. Or people that were on Rampage’s, you know jock, they thought that he won, but clearly if you watched the fight, anytime a man asks for a rematch, 10 out of 10 times tells you that guy lost the fight. And he asked me for a rematch before the results are in. He was like ‘hey man, I want a rematch’ before the results were in. So that says a lot about what he was thinking going into decision, so it is what it is.”

On Canvas Change

“I’m happy that Coker got rid of this canvas ’cause I’m not the only one that’s complaining about it. I feel like canvases everywhere in every organization are kinda sub-par, but I’ll tell you the one in Strikeforce that Canvas is pretty good. I didn’t have a problem slipping, you know I felt like, you know I felt good, like I was fighting on some good grip.”

“I’ll rematch him anytime, even if it’s on a dirt canvas”

(King Mo comes on at the [48:55] mark)

If King Mo wants a rematch with Rampage

“I’ll rematch him anytime, even if it’s on a dirt canvas”

“I’m open fighting Quinton again. You know, he asked me for a rematch, I’ll grant him a rematch. It’s up to him, you know what I’m saying if he wants to fight anymore, because just by looking at him I don’t think his hearts in fighting. I think that after fighting me, I think that he knows he ain’t beat me and I don’t think he wants to fight anymore.”

On Scott Coker taking over Bellator

“I think that with Coker taking over Bellator it brings more credibility to the organization, and he brings more credibility and brings more eyes because people recognize him. He helped build Strikeforce from a regional promotion to a nationwide promotion. Now here’s the funny thing, people think all Coker’s gonna do in Strikeforce was stick around, and be in Bellator and stick around, and the UFC is gonna purchase it. Well people don’t realize that Viacom, which owns Bellator, has more money than the UFC. There’s no way they’re gonna sell it to the UFC. If anything, Viacom could possibly buy the UFC. People just don’t do their research so they just hear what certain people are saying on the internet and they just run with in. Do your research before you start talking, people.”

If King Mo thinks Bellator can be credible competition for the UFC

“Anything’s possible. Because it’s like this, the way MMA’s looking, I don’t think it’s looking that bright right now. The future of MMA is kind of murky because the market been over saturated. People are having all these shows, having these pay per views, they’re trying to get money from all these people and they’re putting on sub-par shows.”

“I think that eventually things have to change. Have less shows, more quality and they’ll do better.”

On TNA’s future

“I have no idea what’s going to happen, I’m hoping the Spike TV Deal happens. I’m pretty sure Dixie has people on it. You know I went to wrestling school, I can wrestle matches. I’m just hoping things get situated so I can get back on Impact and show the wrestling world that King Mo knows what he’s doing in the squared circle. Because when it comes down to it, I put my work in at Ohio Valley Wrestling. I wanna show off what I’ve learned.”

“you get a wrestler that’s 47 years old and you get an MMA fighter that’s 47 years old, the wrestler’s gonna look like he’s sixty compared to an MMA fighter”

On what’s tougher, Pro Wrestling or MMA

“Pro Wrestling is harder than MMA. Here’s the reason why, in MMA I can avoid damage. I can circle, I can pull guard, I can take you down, I can push you to the cage, hell I can tap, I can verbally give up. In Pro Wrestling I’ve seen guys tear their ACL and continue to wrestle solely to please the crowd. You know regardless of what happens, the show must go on. You go out there, people are out there at one point they were wrestling like three times a week, four times a week. You know Hulk Hogan’s leg drop shrunk his spine, but guess what, he was still doing it. You know, your body is banged up, you’re taking bumps, you’re flying over ropes, through the ropes, hitting the ropes, hitting the turnbuckle, getting body slammed, taking a bump. You know that stuff breaks your body down, and you could ask any wrestler, you get a wrestler that’s 47 years old and you get an MMA fighter that’s 47 years old, the wrestler’s gonna look like he’s sixty compared to an MMA fighter. You get Randy Couture and compare him to someone like the Undertaker, I know Undertaker’s a little older but I guarantee you the Undertaker at 47, 48 years old was far more beat up then what Randy Couture was.”

On MMA companies are paying their fighters enough

“I don’t think they are and here’s the reason why, here’s the problem with that, some of these fans are stupid because their like ‘oh Dana White, or Bjorn, or Blah, Blah, Blah, said that you should be happy with that’. No we shouldn’t be happy with that. That’s like me saying ‘hey, you work at McDonalds, you should be happy with your pay’. It’s never good enough.”

“In boxing you know, what happens is you get your show money, and whatever you make, win or lose, is what you get. I feel like that would be better because if you tell a fighter ‘hey you’re going to make 75 and 75, well guess what, the fighter’s gonna be like ‘you know what? I gotta win. So I’m gonna go out there and just win. But if you tell a fighter ‘hey I’m gonna give you 150 straight up’, he will just go out there and fight. He has no worries. There’s no worries, just go out there and fight. Instead of the win bonus, nah just gave him the pay bonus. It’s like this, if they get a knockout, then give ’em a little, extra but if they go out there to fight, then that’s good enough. Just pay them the money.”

“MMA is not really a true sport, because in a true sport the people that win with game plans, regardless if it’s a lay and pray win or a wall and stall win, they still get acknowledged. In soccer, soccer games are 1-0. They go an hour, or an hour and a half with no scoring and it’s 1-0, or 0-0, or a draw. And guess what, people are still there and people respect it. In MMA, if you’re boring they don’t like you. (In) True sports all that matters is the result, not how you win. The result is all that matters in true sports, that’s it. MMA is entertainment, sports entertainment, it’s like World Wrestling, that’s it.”

On why King Mo choose to leave OVW to go into MMA

“Well here’s the thing right, when I left the Olympic trials I went to OVW and they offered me a contract. I was like ‘I wanna go’, but then I was like ‘hey, you know what, I wanna be like a two time Kurt Angle. I wanna be an Olympic champion, then go to MMA be a champion, then go to Pro Wrestling’. So I was like, that’d be perfect cause then no one else has done that. ‘Cause Kurt Angle came in the Olympic champion, so I wanted to one-up him.”

” I loved it, It was great. I was up there with Mark Henry, Scotty 2 Hotty, The worm, Gail Kim was out there, Nathan Jones was out there. It was surreal, Carlito Cool (was out there). I was out there, man it was fun man. I liked the WWE, but I’m a TNA person. I feel like top to bottom TNA has better wrestling, now WWE might have a better show as far as atmosphere and being around longer, but I feel like top to bottom TNA has better wrestling. Like WWE has great wrestlers like (Dean) Ambrose and (Seth) Rollins, and with the Shield and some other guys like Cesaro. They’re great, but if you look at the whole card you see matches where you’re like ‘ah boring’, too many promos, too much talking. I watch both, (but) I fast forward most of the WWE because the promos are so long. Their talking in promo’s, I’m like ‘fast forward. Ok you wasted 45 minutes, it’s taken like three matches’ you know what I’m saying. But with TNA you see a promo there, then there’s matches, matches, matches, small promo, more matches, and the promo’s are shorter in TNA.”

King Mo’s thoughts on Brock Lesnar and the way he is being booked in the WWE

“I love it, because here’s the thing, right now John Cena just put Brock Lesnar over big time, so now Brock should ride a wave. Whoever beats Brock is going to be the next big thing of the WWE. Because for him to dominate John Cena like that, whoever beats Brock has to be the man, and it’s gonna be someone like Roman Reigns or maybe Cesaro, it’s gonna be someone they wanna give a big push to. So you know it makes sense. Creative knows what they’re doing, even in TNA when they do something like that, they do it for a reason. A lot of fans don’t get it, but in a long run it makes a lot of sense.”

Thoughts on the Judging issue in MMA

“I feel like Judges should have to go to seminars every few months, like MMA seminars where they learn how to do the techniques, learn what a proper kick is, what a proper submission is.”
“When it comes down to it I think the judges should go through seminars, they should have little seminars, learn the moves, demonstrate the moves and then explain, they need to all still together and watch fights and explain why they scored rounds for certain people and what their rationale is.”

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