The Avy Slut
I'm planning on seeing Kenny rip Gomi apart. Should be an entertaining fightThere's been a lot of questions surrounding Takanori Gomi over the last few years. Did he lose a step? Does he still have what it takes to compete with the best in the world? Is he past his prime?
One fighter who has no questions about what Gomi brings to the table is his opponent at UFC Fight Night 21 on March 31. Kenny Florian believes that he is facing one of the most dangerous opponents in the sport.
"I don’t buy any of that 'Gomi has been declining.’ I don't believe that's the case at all," said Florian in an interview with MMAWeekly Radio recently.
Gomi's addition to the UFC's lightweight division is a clear sign that he's ready to make one big run for a title, and Florian knows that makes him just as deadly as ever.
"From what I hear, it seems like it's his last run. When you get a guy like that who says things like that, he's a dangerous guy," said the Bostonian. "He wants to make one last run at getting a belt in a major organization. He feels this is the toughest organization in the world, which it is, and he's going out there for blood."
Taking on one of the top contenders in the division is a sure fire way for Gomi to make a splash, but Florian refuses to let the former Pride champion run roughshod over him in any way. He won't be a steppingstone for anyone in the division.
"I'm sure he's going to be coming out hard, and try to make a name for himself right off the bat in this organization. I can't have that," Florian said. "I've trained extremely hard, I've sacrificed a lot, and I've been around the game too long to know that you can't take anyone lightly."
Florian admits that Gomi is a legend in the sport, but he won't let that legendary status affect the way he fights. He respects Gomi, but respect only goes so far.
"You've got to respect your opponent's skills, but I think the key is respecting their skills, but disrespecting their strategy," said Florian. "That’s the main thing. I'm not going to go out there and let him beat me. I'm not going to go out there and let him punch me in the face. I'm going out there to beat him and whatever it takes to beat him, I'm going to go out there and do."
If it's playing the "respect" card, Florian says it's Gomi who better be ready for what he's bringing into the fight because otherwise he might go to sleep in the cage, and wake up on his way back to Japan.
"I don't mean this in a cocky way, but he's going to have to respect me a lot more. I'm not sure he really knows what he's dealing with," said Florian. "I'm not sure if he's been following the UFC, or following my career or whatever, and he definitely doesn't know what I've been up to in the last few months, but I feel like if he doesn't come with his ‘A’ game, and if he feels like he's the senior guy, or that he's the legend, and he doesn't respect me, I think he'll be out of there pretty quick."