Bae Young Kwon emerged victorious from a recent battle for Korean featherweight supremacy with Brian Choi at Road FC 5 and is rapidly establishing a reputation as one of the most exciting prospects in the country. With wins by submission, decision and KO he looks to be an extremely well rounded fighter who has amassed a 6-2 record in just two years of professional MMA.
The win over Choi was arguably the most impressive of his career because the ONE FC fighter had never previously been beaten and Kwon is hoping to build on that momentum in order to establish himself internationally in 2012.
Were you pleased with how the fight with Brian Choi went?
Not fully satisfied, I tried to do more stand-up games but Brian didnt, Brian focused on wrestling.
Did you have a game plan going into that fight and if so did the fight go exactly the way you thought it would?
Again I prepared to go stand up and mix the punches but it went more like clinching and wrestling.
Were you surprised by how many people (around 5,000 according to the Korean media) were at the Jangchung Gymnasium for Road FC 5?
Its been a long time we had an MMA show in Jangchung and I was very excited to be part of it.
Photo by Greg Samborski
Can you tell us a bit about your martial arts background?
Its been three years since my pro debut in Shooto, Japan. I like stand up fight but always train to be all round fighter.
When did you start doing MMA and why?
Started judo from youth and it helps a lot in MMA. One of my friend from judo team was talking about MMA one day and I just fell into it. I had many amateur fights before I got here.
You have victories by submission, KO and decision. Do you prefer ground fighting or stand up fighting?
I have had more KO wins through pros and amateurs. People tell me that I have a heavy punch so I try to use that tool in every fight.
Would you be interested in a rematch with Choi?
Not interested. His style and my style doesn't make for an exciting fight, I think.
You have fought in both Taiwan and Japan, are you interested in fighting overseas again?
Doesnt matter where fights are, Im just doing my best for every fight.
Brian Choi is contracted to One FC and the CEO/Owner was in attendance at Road FC 5, would you be interested in fighting for One FC and if so have you spoken to Victor Cui about the possibility of you appearing on one of their shows?
I was hitting mitt and warming up in locker room and he came to the locker. I kind of noticed it and remember I hit the mitt very hard to advertize myself. Ha! I hope he liked it!
Photo by Greg Samborski
Who do you think are the top Korean fighters at the moment?
My teammates, Yui Chul Nam. He trains like a champ and has a heart of a warrior. We all learn something from him.
If you could fight against any opponent who would it be and why?
Shooto 65kg champiom Leon Takeahi. He also likes to mix punches so it will be an exciting fight if we enter the ring together. Also his last fight against Caol Uno when he won by high kick was very impressive.
Three Korean fighters appeared on the first One FC event, did a lot of people in Korea watch that and are a lot of other Korean fighters hoping to get an opportunity to appear on that show?
Had a time to talk to Soo Chul Kim and Seok Mo Kim about One FC they said it was an amazing experience and that the crowd was very big. Every fighter in Korea now thinks about One FC and I would really like to be a part of One FC fighter and I hope I have a chance to fight over there.
Bae Young "Serial Killer" Kwon vs. Kyoung Ho Kang, (65kg), Road FC 2, Seoul, South Korea (via johnevans47)