Strikeforce Heavyweight Champion Alistair ”The Demolition Man” Overeem has responded to Dana White’s recent comments about him, where White claimed that anyone who has Overeem in their top 10 Heavyweight rankings is stupid. Overeem is currently training for his K1 World Grand Prix quarter final fight against Tyrone Sprong, spiced-up the argument by stating that the former UFC Heavyweight Champion Brock Lesnar is also a questionable Top 10 HW material:
Dana White made recent comments about you not being ranked in the top 10, what’s your take on the comments?
”Dana is entitled to his own opinion and has some valid arguments to claim his case but I don’t feel that they are that strong”
What do you think of those arguments he makes?
”You know, he’s claiming that I didn’t defeat anybody in the top 10 so why should you rank me. That’s true but the fact of the matter is that I’m a very active fighter and you can see that I’m a different fighter than I was at 205lbs. I’m undefeated since 2008 when I became a heavyweight and even more important I have finished all the fights in the first round, but then again Dana is the president of the company so he’s going to say stuff like that. To be honest it doesn’t bother me because I can make a good case for being in the top 10.”
And what are your arguments for your case?
”First of all he was telling me that I didn’t fight anybody in the top 10, that’s not entirely true. When I defended my title against Brett Rogers, Rogers was considered top 10 after he defeated a former number 2 or 3 fighter Arlovski. I was not in the top 10 at the time and when I defeated Brett Rogers I enter the virtual rankings. Now everybody is saying that Brett Rogers shouldn’t have been in the top 10 in the first place, but that’s the same as saying Brock doesn’t deserve a spot on number 2. After what Cain did to Brock it’s silly to give Brock a top 5 spot, but that’s my opinion. He’s still a good fighter but having a 5-2 record and almost losing to Carwin and having wins over Herring, Couture and Mir (which he lost to as well) is not something that I’m very impressed about. I’m not going to call the media stupid like Dana but let me put it this way; How can a real MMA insider put a Brock Lesnar above Fedor Emelianenko or even JDS. The fact of the matter is I like that people are debating the rankings but I don’t take them that seriously”
Why don’t you take them seriously?
”You know when I heard that Brett Rogers was a top 10 fighter and I wasn’t ranked, I thought he was the favourite going into the fight. Then a friend of mine called and told me that he was going to bet on me but that I was the favourite and the odds were in my favour. So if the bookmarks don’t even use the ranking then you can say that they don’t mean that much. The same thing before the Cain vs Brock fight, I saw a preview article and most of the fans and other fighters thought that Cain was going to win the fight, that’s strange if the ranking put him number 1 and the organization calls him the baddest man on the planet”
If you can make the ranking yourself what would the ranking look like?
” I am not going to make my own top 10 because that will just create more room for debate and that’s not necessary. People have to define first what criteria comes into play when making a ranking system. Some people use only their last fight and what opposition they have fought, other people look at skill set, talent, way of fighting style and popularity. Now people tend to use both criteria and therefore you have ranking that can be heavily debated. That’s why Dana White is saying that I don’t belong in the top 10, because he doesn’t take into account my K1 fights and doesn’t think that beating one top 10 fighter is good enough for entering the ranking. On the other hand you have Bas Rutten that says that I’m the number 1 heavyweight in the world. He uses my experience, potential, skill set and the way I finished fights against opposition that is not considered top 10. He also knows that my striking is improved very much and therefore uses my K1 experience. So lets say the truth is somewhere in the middle. I’m fully aware that I have to prove myself, I know I can defeat anybody so it’s my job to prove it to my fans and to my doubters”
What do you think of Dana’s claim that the best fighters fight in the UFC and fight each other 3 times a year?
” It’s not strange that Dana is making such a claim, but if really thinks that his heavyweight division is the best in the world he should he should let 5 heavyweights of the UFC fight 5 heavyweights from Strikeforce otherwise he can never justify his claim that the UFC has the best heavyweights in the world. My opinion is this one that Strikeforce have a good chance winning. They tried it when PRIDE was there so it’s not something new. If Strikeforce are going to have a tournament format they should reserve a spot for a UFC fighter, that would be awesome. About the fact that they fight each other 3 times a year, I can only say he has a valid point but Strikforce is a young organization give them time to prove themselves. They have a great roster of fighters so I’m confident that they will make the fights happen very soon. I’m ready to fight 2-3 times in 2011!”
Overeem brings up some valid points himself, covering a range of topics. Ubereem will look to prove his worth at the K-1 2010 WGP Final, which will take place next month, on December 11th at the Ariake Coliseum in Tokyo, Japan.