Tim Kennedy talks Yoel Romero at UFC 178, Blasts Vitor Belfort!

On July 20, 2014 By

Tim Kennedy is a rather fascinating dude. On one hand, he’s a former army ranger, green beret, sniper, won an army service-wide hand to hand combat tournament at Light Heavyweight three years in a row, was awarded the Bronze Star Medal with V device, which was awarded for valor under fire (yes….people actually shot at him!), and regularly faces some of the most elite fighters in the UFC’s middleweight division…………………on the other hand, he likes to dress up in tutus in order to reenact scenes from Black Swan, and apparently has a MASSIVE teddy bear collection. To loosely quote and apply some lyrics from the “Shaft” theme song, “He’s a complicated man, but nobody understands him but his woman”….or something like that. But if there’s one thing for sure, it’s that Tim Kennedy is tough. Mentally, physically, and this week he’s no tougher on anybody more than Vitor Belfort.

Tim Kennedy makes his first appearance on Submission Radio to talk about his upcoming fight against the dangerous Yoel Romero at UFC 178, and how he plans to defeat the “Soldier of God”. The former Army Ranger gives his thoughts on PED users, Vitor Belfort’s ‘alleged’ steroid abuse, how he’d stack up against Chris Weidman, what he learned from the Michael Bisping fight, re-enacting Natalie Portman’s scene from Black Swan, Teddybears, and cooking with gun knives.

Thoughts on Yoel Romero match up and who Tim wanted to fight.

“I wanted Vitor Belfort, well, I wanted a clean Vitor Belfort. Apparently that wasn’t possible.”
“So Yoel is really good. He’s very talented, you know I actually think he’s better than Vitor Belfort and he poses a lot of problems.”

“Like you said, he’s not a big name. He only has four fights with the UFC, he’s 4-0, he’s a very, very, very talented athlete, and he’s a very good fighter. So Joe Silva asked me to fight him, and you know I’m not a big fish, I only have 3 fights in the UFC, I can’t say no. So if he says ‘Hey this is the guy you want me to fight’, my response is ‘Cool, let’s do it’.

On Vitor Belfort and PED’s

“So guys have definitely been on it for a really long time on a whole bunch of different stuff. You know, if you ask every single fighter, every single guy if they’ve ever been blood tested, the vast majority of them will say no. The stuff that they’re catching these guys on are things that you could only find with blood tests. So you know, only recently in the past few months have we tested guys you know, for HGH, EPO, you know stuff that you could only find in the blood, and ironically those guys that they test keep failing. So it’s definitely been there and there’s not like there’s an increase of it, it’s just (that if) you’re testing for it you’re going to find it, and a whole bunch of guys are using it, and a lot more than they’ve found.”

“What can we do it about it? Well, test. Test, test, test more guys. Like, you know they’ve tested like six or seven dudes; Jon Jones, Texeira – both of those guys came back clean – Demetrious (Johnson), Ali (Bagautinov) both tested, Demetrious came back clean Ali did not, Chael failed obviously, Wanderlei ran from the athletic commission guy that came in to take the sample, Vitor Belfort failed, you know these are reoccurring themes here that if you’re going to test guys, their gonna fail. So you have to test more of them to really understand where the issue is and how many guys are doing it”

On fighting Vitor Belfort knowing that he may be using PED’s

“I love fighting and I definitely subscribe to the “I’ll fight anybody, anywhere, anytime” thing. So would I have fought Vitor? They asked me to fight him, and I said yes. They asked me to fight him in Brazil, and I said yes. They asked me to fight Vitor Belfort at 205 in Brazil, I said yes. And then I asked if we could do any anti-doping stuff, and they said no. So not only would I be fighting Vitor Belfort in Brazil, while he’s on steroids, at a weight class that I shouldn’t be fighting at, so yes obviously you can look, it was publicized, he was the one who said no, or his manager said no, whatever. So yeah, I would have fought him, I even said I would fight him, but the levels of how long and idiotic that is, that I’m the one who has to go to Brazil to fight him, no he won’t take any steroid tests for VADA, and I have to fight him at 205, it’s like crazy talk, but I said yeah”

On if Vitor Belfort will have the same level of success when he returns

“Right now he’s down in Brazil, or back in you know California, training his butt off and injecting, anything that he wants to and loving it, and nobody’s testing him, or like his doctor – when I say his, I’m making quotation fingers “doctor” – so he’s like dripping testosterone out of his eyeballs right now, how old was he when he first failed a drug test, like 18? For anabolic steroids? So he’s being using for 20 years. Your body doesn’t function naturally now. – He’s what, 37 or 38? So like 18 years -But there’s no possible way that he could compete at a high level against the Chris Weidmans, the me’s, the Luke Rockholds without chemically enhancing himself. There’s no way. I don’t care if he’s like, drinking Jesus’ blood like he says he is or whatever, it doesn’t work that way. Like, he’s been using steroids for like 15 or 20 years, and he still is using them. If he ever tries to get clean, he can’t compete at this level.”

On improvements Tim wanted to make after the Bisping fight

“I wanted to go in there and knock out Michael Bisping. That was like what I wanted to do. So I was gonna wear him out, I was gonna make him be scared of the ground, and then I was going to hit him with big shots. I was trying so hard to knock him out that I never did any of the stuff that we were working on. So you know, just like being able to implement the things that you trained and execute them without being distracted by you know, being so focused on the goal that you forget about the processes about how to get there.”

Thoughts on how he stacks up with Chris Weidman

“I know it would be a very competitive fight. I wouldn’t be in the sport if I didn’t think I could compete at the highest level and be the champion. That’s what I wanna be, and I really believe that I am at his level. He deserves to be a champion and I think I could go in there, and I don’t wanna say that I could catch him, but I think I could beat him. And if I didn’t believe that, and I wouldn’t say it, then I’d get out of the sport. I’d do something else. So yeah, I do believe that and I can’t wait to have the chance.”

On having Overeem as a part of Jackson/Winkeljohn’s

“I’ve only heard from teammates of what he’s been like while he’s been there, and I don’t know if it’s an attitude change from how he used to be at different camps but, everybody is saying ‘man, he’s a team player, he’s a hard worker, you know doesn’t talk back to the coaches, and you know he’s a pleasure to be around’. So I won’t see him for another couple of weeks, so everything I’m saying is hearsay, but from my team mates and coaches, all of them have been saying that it’s a real privilege to have him around.”

On how Tim goes about training and his thoughts on big muscles being a detriment to his performance

“The human body’s an amazing, amazingly adaptive thing, and it will do what you train it to do. I don’t lift weights to put on muscle ever, all the muscle I have is just a by-product of like the fast twitch anabolic movements, you know I do more plyometrics then I do anything. I do more metabolic conditioning than I do anything. You know, it’s just all fast tempo, cardio type stuff. I’m just naturally a big dude, and I do think (that) there is a trade off that more muscle you have and how you train your muscle is, you know, how it’s gonna perform. Could I go out and run a marathon right now? No. I definitely have a different type of body, I have one that’s designed to sprint for 25 minutes, at high speed and be able to do violence for 25 minutes. So there’s no single way to answer that question. Yes and No. Yes muscle can slow you down, lactic acid can ruin your cardio, but if you wanna hit hard and you wanna move fast you have to have it. So you have to find a balance between those two things.”

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