We are here with TUF alumni Joseph "Leonidas" Henle for his upcoming fight this Friday for MFC 34 against Luke Harris! He talks a little bit about Luke Harris, Chuck and Tito and his new vegetarian diet check it out and be sure to watch him this Friday live on AXS TV in the Co-Main Event!
GFMMA: First I need a record, what is your fight record?
GFMMA: What weight do you fight at?
JH: 185 professionally and as an amateur I fought between 205-230.
GFMMA: What has been your toughest fight so far?
JH: Robert Barros or on the ultimate fighter.
GFMMA: Where do you train out of?
JH: Reign and knuckleheads boxing.
GFMMA: Do you work on any areas of your game specifically?
JH: No, just getting my hands sharp and staying tight and takedown defense, not specific for him just paying attention to where we want to be.
GFMMA: Where did the Leonidas nickname come from? Is it just from the beard?
JH: I got it from a wrestling team I was coaching in 2007 and I had the giant beard and was like 235 so I was an imposing figure and a couple little kids and said coach "can we call you Leonidas?" And I said "sure" so it stuck.
GFMMA: What did you think of seeing both coaches from your season of ultimate fighter retire?
JH: They had been in the game for so long you are happy for them as long as they are ok with it, Tito was just a step behind and chuck could have kept going and a some point you have to feel for your health and now he’s got his family and kids and looks like he’s having a good time.
GFMMA: Who is your favorite fighter to watch?
JH: It used to be wanderlei Silva it was the brutal fashion he used to fight with him against Dan Henderson
and his head had grown another head and you look at him with admiration I was always a fan of Andrei Arlovski
they have a lot of fun out there.
GFMMA: What’s the biggest thing you took away from the ultimate fighter?
JH: Just learning about myself I did a lot of listening a lot of the things weren’t good for me and I had only made 185 twice before the show so learning that played a role I was physically exhausted the whole time and couldn’t keep running as well.
GFMMA: How does it feel that the guy you beat (Costas Phillippou) to get onto the show being
in the UFC and you are not yet?
JH: I’m happy for him it’s an invite party and someone has got to like you and a lot of it is timing he beat the right guys he lived in jersey and it’s nice to see him do well.
It’s not all about fighting and scrapping they could have learned a lot by taking different fights it’s not that they are bad and you can’t get on the big show. You got to build up to that and get to the good position I feel like I’ve fought good opposition from being on the show.
GFMMA: What do you think of Luke Harris?
JH: He’s good and slick with his hips, very technical on the ground and he’s dangerous he’s good on back and on top he’s a fast starter and he’s used to bullying and I don’t get bullied. I’m excited for the challenge He’s not real dangerous and he has holes in his game, I’m fighting someone who is on my level and will give me an opportunity to showcase myself.
GFMMA: Have you ever fought out of the country before?
JH: No I’ve only fought outside of California a few times, I’m excited I’ve never been to Canada not a big traveler.
GFMMA: How do you feel about the current situation with Anderson Silva
? Who do you think he should fight next?
JH: I would be down to see the Weidman fight and I think Michael Bisping
is almost at that point everybody is so close and you try to set up a #1 contender fight but just give him a guy, so give him Weidman I would love to see that fight and it is what it is and they are so dominant it’s hard to determine who should get it next and why not? Let him have fun.
GFMMA: How has MFC treated you so far?
JH: The promotion is good and with the media and stuff and putting together things for us, just been waiting to get up there and see what it’s all about.
GFMMA: Do you have any fighters that you try to emulate yourself after?
JH: Nobody in particular I have a style of my own I have some tools that others don’t have there’s attributes I would love to have from wanderlei to Anderson and Weidman but really try to stick to what you do and take advantage.
GFMMA: What do you do in your free time?
JH: I like to golf and dominoes I like to hang out, I coach wrestling and teaching kids and football since about 2007 almost as long as I’ve been fighting.
GFMMA: Where do you see your career in three years?
JH: Hopefully making life changing money, I really don’t care about the belt and I want to fight for a living I just want to make a living fighting hopefully we can put on some smashing fights with MFC, its prizefighting to me and ill punch you with a smile!
GFMMA: Why should I watch Joseph Henle?
JH: I’m very attractive! If you never seen me fight you can only go of what you hear I want to get to a fighter people talk about I would love to put on a showcase fight where people say that he can smash, I got to show a lot of my ground on the show and that’s just how it worked out, I hope people enjoy the fight.
GFMMA: Do you ever want to go to a different gym and train?
JH: Not since I’ve started where I’m at, I’ve worked with other guys but nobody does what my coach can do, at Reign how can you get tired of working with the best in the world? It’s the top fighters it’s not like I’m ever missing anything and you are always working on everything.
GFMMA: Is your ultimate goal to be in the UFC? Or would you consider fighting for Bellator?
JH: The best long term deal is the best, MFC has been around for so long and promotions come and go and Bellator is making a good stand you just have to put yourself in the right position, work to a good level.
GFMMA: If you could punch anyone in the face who would it be?
JH: I’m not really a violent guy and I suppose I would say Luke Harris or maybe any white supremacist I wouldn’t mind hitting those .
GFMMA: Do you want to mention any sponsors?
JH: Street Soldier, Gosuperlife.com, budomartamerica.com, Tri-Coasta
JH: I do a lot of Pilates and TRX I’m a big believer in going as hard as you can in training, you push hard when sparring than in the fight, Pilates keeps the core engage and TRX keeps you moving and stressing the body.
JH: Almost vegetarian I don’t eat a lot of meat I used to be a little bit bigger the way I used to eat I hated it. There are so many things I eat now that I really enjoy I feel like I’m getting all I need and being smart with recovery and the food to fuel us and done a great job to help power through fights and training.
Thanks to Joe for taking the time to sit down with us, be sure to check him out live at MFC 34 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada on August 10th! That's all for this interview brought to you by Geek Fight MMA. Be sure to check out our past interviews, like our page, tell us who else we should interview and whatever else you want to tell us about the MMA world!
Nick "Clark" Cody