Thursday, March 20, 2008

Tatsuya Kawajiri Interview

Kawajiri had an interview with DREAM on Mar 16.

- You had a tough fight yesterday. Are you injured?
I'm fine. I didn't even get any power punches.

- I heard you saw your opponent before the fight.
Yes. We accidentally saw each other at the hotel in that morning. I was waiting for an elevator to come. He was there when the elevator door opened. He gave me a gesture to come in. We actually saw after the fight, too.

- How did you react??
I return him a gesture saying "After you. I'm going to take a next
one." I didn't see any reason to squeeze in an elevator packed with my
opponent and his supporters, especially on the same day we were going to
fight. I saw him after the fight though.

- Did you see him after the fight again?
Yes, I met him at the parking. He is a very nice and friendly guy.
Although we couldn't make any verbal communication, I felt a good
vibration from him and took a picture together.

- What do you think about your fight?
He was a strong fighter and I'm glad to have this experience. My fight plan was that I threw punches, took him down when he was cautious of my punches, and submitted him on the ground. Though our fight went as I planned without getting his knee kicks, I couldn't finish him because his ground techniques were a lot better than I expected.

- After the event, Black Mamba said he wanted to exchange punches in the standing position though?
This is the 1st round of the tournament and have to consider about my next fight which is within 2 months. I paid attention not to be injured because I have broken my hand bone before.

- You got applause when you entered the stadium.
I know. That raised my motivation because I knew everybody expected me a lot and supported me. I wanted to do better to correspond with their expectations. I'm disappointed about my performance though.

- I believe many fans were surprised to see your hair style. Where does your hair style come from?
When I debut as a professional MMA fighter, I always had a weird hair style. I had a normal black hair at the time of fighting in PRIDE though. Now I changed my hairstyle to stand out. I tried to have a hair style which Vitor Belfort had before. I don't know this is popular or not though.

- How was other people's reaction?
Well, I suppose they lost their words. Nobody said anything at first. They said, "It's OK, I guess".

- I think it's cool! Anyway, any thought about this event?
The light weight consists of many good fighters like I said before. If
we work on our mission which is to have attractive fights, DREAM will be the better event than PRIDE and HERO'S.

- When do you start training for your next fight?
I take a break for a week and start.

- What kind of techniques do you want to develop?
I still have lots to learn as a MMA fighter and would like to develop the whole technique. What I felt yesterday is to control the pace of the fight. I always devoted all my energies to finish as quick as I could from the beginning to the end. Now I think I should adjust my pace to deal with my opponent effectively.

- You have fights constantly since NYE. Do you feel any differences in your training?
Yes. If I continue to win, I have fight in May and July. It's easy to set my schedule and my conditioning. Having an short term goal makes me motivated to train hard.

- Who do you think is the most dangerous fighter?
Everybody. I think all fighters have a chance to win this competition. I got to be ready to fight anybody.

- Eddie Alvarez got the spotlight in the after the fight interview.
I didn't watch his fight because it was before my fight. He is aggressive and know how to fight, and also has his own fighting style. I suppose a fighter who has his own style is tough and strong.

- Any message to your fans?
I want to survive and have a good result. Come and see my fight!

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