Former UFC heavyweight champ Andrei Arlvoski has had a rough 2 1/2 years since beating Roy Nelson by TKO at EliteXC:Heat in October 2008. He's been KO'd by Fedor Emelianenko, Brett Rogers and Sergei Kharitonov and lost via decision to Antonio Silva.
With the growth of his losing streak, many fans have called for Arlovski's retirement, but now his long-time striking coach Mike Garcia has joined the chorus, via Pro MMA Now:
"I didn't mean it like he doesn't have the skills. There's just... I just don't want to see him get hurt. There's something not clicking, and you can see in his last couple fights he's not the same Andrei. He says he wants to fight, I hope he does. But if he doesn't , I just don't want to see him get hurt."
"I just think a lot of it is confusion," said Garcia. "Andrei's last good fight that he looked awesome in was Ben Rothwell and we were with him. He worked with Freddie like the first two weeks, then he stayed with us like five weeks in the camp with us with Dino, Sean and John, his wrestling coach and jiu-jitsu. We all gel pretty well together. We all know what to do and we all talk to each other as far as a team. ... He looked awesome that night. Ever since then that's when he started going back and forth with Freddie Roach and I just think it's a lot of confusion for the kid. Hopefully maybe Greg Jackson, him being at one camp, listening to one instruction could work out. Because we didn't go to Albuquerque with him so we don't know what Greg Jackson is teaching him compared to our game plan, so... if he listens to us then goes out there and listens to them, then comes back and listens to us, there's a lot of confusion. So, he needs one base. And we told him before if you feel like somebody else can bring the best out of you, by no means, take them. We'll still be your friends, it's strictly business, we understand it."
"People say he ain't got no chin. He's got a chin, it's just that, I don't care who you are, with four ounce mitts, anybody hits you... Look at when he fought Bigfoot Silva. His mind wasn't there a hundred percent. He got hit with some shots in that first round and he took the hits no problem. When he fought Tim Sylvia the third time, they both beat the shit out of each other for 25 minutes. They both took some shots and they both stood there. So, for people to say he has no chin is bullshit."
For his part Arlvoski hasn't responded well to Garcia's comments and has announced he will be training full-time at Greg Jackson's MMA and will no longer work with Garcia because he's angered that Garcia told others that Arlovski should retire without telling Arlovski to his face.