“The French Sensation” Cheick Kongo – Interview
By Dave Carpinello
UFC Heavyweight Contender Cheick Kongo recently took some time away from training to answer some questions for PunchDrunkGamer.
PDG: Since your last fight against Heath Herring, what have you been doing?
Kongo: As usual, I have resumed my training to prepare my next fight.
PDG: Did you suffer any injuries in that fight that need time to heal?
Kongo: No, I didn’t suffer any injuries.
PDG: What was your thought on the decision by the judges awarding Heath the victory?
Kongo: To be honest, I thought that I had won the first two rounds but the judges decided otherwise. Life goes on. A battle has been lost but not the war. I am still on the road for the title, you better watch out because I am ready and hungry, more than ever.
PDG: What changes will you need to make to your training, if any, before your next fight?
Kongo: I do not change anything. All that I need is to find some good place where I can eat healthy. I am seriously thinking about bringing a personal cook with me everywhere I go.
PDG: How is your training schedule now? Days, Hours, and Training Partners?
Kongo: I workout 6 days a week, 3 to 4 times a day. I do running, lifting weights, and practice techniques including boxing, sparring, wrestling. I still train with Coach Juanito Ibarra at Quinton “Rampage” Jackson’s camp.
PDG: When will you make your return to the UFC Octagon?
Kongo: As quickly as possible, maybe in July.
PDG: How about a fight with Tim Sylvia to get back to the #1 Contender at Heavyweight? (question asked before Tim Sylvia’s departure)
Kongo: Tim Sylvia has just left The UFC; so I wait and see who my next opponent will be.
PDG: Everyone knows the history between you and Mirko “Cro-Cop”. He says that when he comes back to the UFC, he wants a rematch with you. What do you think about that?
Kongo: Nothing… I don’t have my eyes set on anybody. I am here to win the UFC belt, get the title, and be the next Heavyweight Champion and I’m working towards that. But it could be interesting and exciting to kick his ass one more time.
PDG: How is the sport of Mixed Martial Arts viewed-perception wise in France?
Kongo: The French government has just legalized MMA after a long struggle and I am really delighted about that because there are lots of MMA fighters and MMA fans in my country. Sport ethics are a little bit different in France, but things change, mentalities change and step by step, French MMA is looking to firmly impose itself as one of the powerhouses of MMA in Europe and potentially in the world. I am very proud to be a part of it.
PDG: Is there one fighter (retired or currently fighting) that you are a big fan of and why?
Kongo: I’m a big fan of Rampage and Michael Bisping. They’ve got skills, they’ve got style and they are smoking hot right now, lol!
PDG: Is there anything else that you would like to add?
Kongo: I would like to thank God; I’m fighting for the UFC, the greatest fight organization in the world! Thank you PDG for the great work you do, and all the support you show. Many thanks to my family, friends, my US sparring partners from Rampage’s Camp and my French training partners from the Us Metro, Peruba Team, Quoniam Gym, to my coach Juanito, to my sponsors Groove Drink, Compagnie de Californie & Strange and all my fans out there for their unbelievable support and love from day one.
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