On Saturday, January 20th, 2007, World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) will launch it’s maiden voyage in The Joint at the world famous Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. The main event will feature two of the best Muay Thai fighters in the business, battling it out for the Lightweight Championship. Facing a formidable opponent in “Razor” Rob McCullough (13-3), Kit Cope (1-3) is out to prove he has the steel to dull the Razor’s edge.
Q. How do you feel about the WEC being taken under the wing of Zuffa?
A.I think it’s great! It’s about time there was a lateral organization to build on. Up until now, the UFC was the only ones who could get the job done right.
Q. Where do you feel your rightful place is between the two? Is WEC for you or do you think you should be in the UFC?
A. At the beginning I thought I was above the WEC and didn’t want to “downgrade” so to speak, but they are going to have status and need some superstars, so here I am.
Q. You are one of the strongest strikers out there, but have had some trouble on the ground. What changes have you made since your loss to Kenny Florian?
A. I got a new shoulder. I had separated my clavicle before the fight with Florian. I got my new one is December. Otherwise, I am training a lot of Judo and Jiu-Jitsu.
Q. Who are you training with for your ground game these days?
A. I train Jiu-Jitsu here in Las Vegas with Mica, and in Judo with an Olympic Champion named Younes. I also work a lot with Nick and Nate Diaz.
Q. Your upcoming opponent, Rob McCullough, is well-versed in Muay Thai like you are. How do you feel you match up with him and how do you see this fight unfolding?
A. First of all, I have to correct you. He trains Muay Thai but he is “unlike” me. His stand-up game is nothing like mine. I’m not worried at all about his striking abilities. He has more MMA experience than me but he will stand and try to convince me he will trade punches until he tries to shoot for the takedown. But, most likely, he will get knocked out in the process.
Q. You’ve been a long time student of Master Toddy. What made you venture out on your own, and who are you training with now?
A. I actually spent 13 years with Master Toddy. Except for wrestling, he trained me up from scratch. I left him for business reasons. We had a difference of opinion. I wanted to go into MMA and he didn’t want me to. I own two gyms now and train with Master Chan, who was Master Toddy’s number one trainer. He left Master Toddy as well and came with me.
Q. What kind of future do you feel you have in MMA? How far can your career go?
A. I figure as long as I take care of my body, stay healthy, and keep the Xyience flowing, I have a good 5 or 6 years left. I will be at the top before I’m out. That’s what I do. I find a sport I like, develop it and dominate it.
Q. Not too long ago you set your sites on the K-1 Max Division. Is this still in the cards and where do you feel you stand amongst the competitors in that division right now?
A. Yes, that’s one of my goals. I’m fighting strong at 155lbs and I definitely want to do K-1. I think I stack up very well. There are not a lot of Muay Thai guys that can get one over on me. I’m at the top of my Muay Thai game. At the moment I want to stay anchored in MMA, but you will see me in K-1.
Q. Do you have plans to do any more reality TV or anything else in the world of Hollywood entertainment?
A. I have my own reality TV show now. It’s called the Wild World of Spike and it’s on Friday nights at midnight. Of course, it’s on Spike TV. After this year, I’m not going to do reality TV. I want to get into theatrical film and play myself in a movie.
Q. Last but not least, is there anyone out there you want to thank?
A. Yeah, I’d like to thank Xyience for keeping me at the top of my game, Warrior Wear for clothing my naked butt, Hart & Huntington Tattoo Company for decorating my naked body, MMA Warehouse, and the love of my life.
Q. Do you have anything to say to your opponent, “Razor” Rob McCullough?
A. (Just chuckles)