Former UFC light heavyweight title contender, Elvis Sinosic has been in the MMA news lately for his well published desire to fight on the UFC's first ever Australian event in February, 2009 and his letter to the Sydney Morning Herald regarding their grossly misinformed "Cage Rage Coming Here" article.
I recently conducted an email based interview with Elvis regarding all of the above, as well as some potential Australian names you may see in early 2009.
Sam: You have come out recently imploring for a spot on the almost 100% confirmed UFC Australia card this upcoming February. Can you talk a little about your desire to fight on the card and what it would mean to you?
Elvis: I am a big fan of the sport as much as I am a participant. I’ve been involved in the sport of MMA since it’s inception here in Australia in 1997. I was the first Australian to be on a UFC card and I’ve done a lot since then. With the UFC coming to Australia it’s just something I want to do. I want to be part of this history in the making. This would mean a lot to me.
Sam: Some people might look at your 8-11-2 record and say you aren't deserving of a spot on an UFC card at this stage of your career. How do you respond to that?
Elvis: To me it’s just numbers. But you need to look behind those numbers. Have a look at the quality of fighters I have faced. I have faced numerous World Champions. Though I would have preferred to have won those matches, I would rather have my record than a padded out record against nobodies. At least I know I have stepped up to the plate and faced the best guys out there. I have challenged myself when I fought. I been forced to push myself to the limit. Everyone knows that I come to fight. I don’t come not too lose I come to win. I put it on the line, I take risks, I make fights exciting. That’s what my record reflects.
Sam: If everything falls into place and you were to get a spot, is there anyone you would especially like to face? Or anyone you think you'd have a great fight with?
Elvis: I always want to face the best. I don’t have anyone in particular but I’d love to face the top guys. Guys like Chuck, Rampage, Shogun, fighters who are legends of the sport. Fighters who are going to push me to bring out the best I have. For me the importance is fighting on the card rather than who I am fighting.
Sam: You haven't fought since your loss to Paul Cahoon in 2007, what have you been doing since then and how do you feel about how your skills compare to the rest of your division?
Elvis: When it comes to skills I believe I am as competitive as anyone in the division. I am a well rounded fighter. I can strike, I can grapple. I win matches by submission, TKO and KO. I am dangerous anywhere in the fight.
Sam: Changing subject a bit, this will be the first UFC card in Australia how will this help MMA in Australia and how successful do you think it will be?
Elvis: I think this is a great step forward for the sport of MMA. The sport here is growing. We’re slowly gaining recognition and acceptance. Though there are still the uneducated and un-accepting out there overall things are moving forward in a positive manner. What the UFC brings is Big Time Mainstream exposure. Everyone will be talking about the UFC soon. This will give the Australian MMA market a much needed boost.
Sam: You've also been in the MMA news recently because of your letter in response to the Sydney Morning Herald's announcement of the UFC plans, do you think the media situation will get better in the lead up to the event, or is this just a taste?
Elvis: I think it will. It is pretty much standard for the un-educated press to take this course of action. I just wanted to step up and let them know that they were accountable for what they wrote. I wanted to let them know that there are facts involved and they’re not negative like the paper would like. The reality is that it doesn’t matter whether the press says good things or bad things the important thing is that they’re talking about it. The worst thing would be for them to not do anything. People will read the articles. Most people are smart enough to look further if the article catches their attention. The internet is at everyone’s finger tips. Though I hope to see more press soon and hopefully be more positive. Men’s Fitness recently did a great job on an article on MMA here in Australia. So I think it’s just a matter of time.
Sam: In regards to Australian talent at the event, it's almost a lock that George Sotiropoulos will be on the card are there any other Australian fighters that MMA fans should know about that are a possibility for this card?
Elvis: I really don’t know for sure. We do have lots of great talent that should be on the card. Anthony Perosh one of Australia’s top LHW’s for sure and he’s an ex-UFC veteran as well. There are other guys worth mentioning as well, Adrian Pang, Justin Murray, Kyle Noke, and more. We have some good talent in this country.
Sam: Anything you would like to say to the fans in closing?
Elvis: I would like to thank all my fans, family, friends and students for their continued support. I want to thank my sponsors for continuing to believe in me. I would like to thank my friend and training partner Anthony Perosh. If I fight in the UFC Australia it will be thanks to all their support and encouragement. Keep cheering. It’s good to be the King!
If you want to see Elvis in the octagon in February, 2009 help raise awareness by joining his Facebook fanpage and letting Dana White and the UFC know via twitter by tweeting "Put Elvis Sinosic on the UFC Australia card" or something of that effect to @danawhiteufc.