"1. It was your first fight after two defeats. Were you nervous about your comeback to the ring?
Mirko: I wasn't nervous, I've been fighting in the ring for many years and I feel at home in it. I was excited about fighting in Japan again.
2. You looked impressive in the ring. You bulked up, did you do it on purpose or did it just happen?
Mirko: Gaining muscle mass was a 6 months process and I did it primarily to increase my raw strength.
3. Your boxing techniques looked fresh? Did the work with Marijan Zizanovic pay off?
Mirko: We train really hard and it's for sure that some credits for it should be given to Marijan. He's a real expert, I should have started this cooperation even sooner. It's a sure thing that my stand-up techniques will look even better in my next fights.
4. Did you think, theoretically, about what would have happened if you had lost one more fight? You are much better than Mizuno, but a single punch in this sport can decide a winner?
Mirko: I don't think about defeats, I'm well motivated and focused on bigger fights in the future and wins, of course.
5. How did it feel to return back to Japan after the US episode? Your popularity in Japan is still incredible, Saitama (and the atmosphere) is looking almost exactly like in PRIDE?
Mirko: The feeling was just fantastic, we can say that Japan is my second home. Japanese fans really respect this sport and the fighters, while Saitama is a place of some good memories.
6. Mizuno was a good warming-up, now you have more serious challenges in front of you. There are rumors about LeBanner, your old friend from your very first K1 fight, that you won?
Mirko: DREAM has mentioned several names for my next fight, it appears that my next opponent could be someone from K1. If it's LeBanner, that will be a big fight that I'm looking forward to.
7. Is it true that there is a one out of three chance in DREAM that you could face Sergey Kharitonov, who was one of the most well-rounded fighters in PRIDE?
Mirko: It's possible, it depends on DREAM, I want to fight against well known, great fighters.
8. Do you think that worldwide media is being a little bit unfair to you, after you spoiled them with an almost perfect score in last few years? After a brilliant open weight Grand Prix finale, you suffered two defeats, which made many people say that you are finished and that you have never been a top fighter.
Mirko: I don't think about this, my job is to fight and to do the best I can. Everyone can have an opinion, but in order to have a complete picture about this sport, people should try it themselves. A low motivation is a major problem for a fighter, and opinions like this are actually very motivating.
9. Your trademark is the worldwide famous high kick. You destroyed dozens of opponents with that kick, but exactly the same kick was devastating for you against Gonzaga. Is it hard to get back on track after such a loss and is it mentally tough to get back to the ring/cage again?
Mirko: My biggest problem in the UFC was a mental blockade, I spoke about it a few times already. I was empty, my motivation was low, I had no real desire to win the fight. It's very expensive in a fight.
10. Do you have any regrets about joining the UFC? I believe the difference was bigger than you could imagine. The cage, the rules, the audience, even the fighting style. Have you been surprised by the quality of UFC fighters - it was a common belief that PRIDE fighters were better?
Mirko: It's just another lesson for me. The UFC has some great fighters and the game is very different. The cage makes a difference too, but I'm looking forward to my return to the cage as I want to prove that I can be successful in it.
11. You announced that you'll return to the UFC and fight Gonzaga, Kongo and Nogueira again?
Mirko: All options are open but in this moment I only think about my next fight.
12. Your former sparring partner and BJJ trainer, Fabrizio Werdum, is getting better and more successful. Some credits probably go to your team where Fabricio learned a majority of his stand-up techniques. How is your relation with Werdum at the moment, there were even stories told that you could fight him in the UFC?
Mirko: It's a fair relationship, we trained together and we separated in a friendly manner.
13. News about you is always very popular among Index's readers. Do you surf the net yourself? You have your own blog now?
Mirko: I'm relatively often online, I get around better. Almost every evening I visit Index's website after my training, it contains very interesting news. Since a while I also have my own blog on www.mma-id.com
where I post the latest information about my trainings, career and other interesting things."