Phil Baroni: Nobody dry humps the New York Bad Ass and gets away with it! (Exclusive Interview)

6074315661 9a7bf71ea0 zAsia, the true Mecca of Martial Arts. Before the time of Christ, historical studies have shown that the earliest recorded proof of Martial Arts is as old as late 1st Millennium BC. Who knew thousands of years later, Martial Arts and combat sports as a whole would be as big as it is in the world today. But the sport of Mixed Martial Arts is still in its infancy stages in a continent that is home to 3/4 of the earth’s population. ONE FC looks to change that, featuring the best fighters in all of Asia. The promotion is off to a very good start with their inaugural event being filled to the 12,000 capacity at the Singapore Indoor Stadium on September 3rd.

The sport in the continent maybe at least ten years behind compared to how it is here in North America, but business is booming and the excitement is at a fever pitch for the upcoming show. The fights will be aired to a potential 500 million home viewers on ESPN Star Sports (the fights will also be streamed for free on Sherdog), twenty-four countries will have access to the fights on TV, and showcased to a sold out venue. Did I mention ONE FC rules mix the traditional unified rules with the excitement of PRIDE rules? Yup, that means you can expect soccer kicks and stomps inside the cage.

One of the fighters that is part of this historical event is one of the most colourful personalities in our sport’s short history. From the UFC’s Octagon to the white ring of PRIDE and the six-sided cage of Strikeforce. Phil Baroni has fought at all corners of the globe and will be facing another UFC veteran in Yoshiyuki Yoshida. The “New York Bad Ass” is a man that doesn’t pull any punches when it comes to his choice of words. Check out this fun and entertaining interview as he takes time out of his busy schedule to speak to the Lowkick Nation!

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Phil you’ve fought all over the world in a career that spans eleven years and now you’ll be fighting in Singapore. How did this opportunity with ONE FC come about?
I read about ONE FC online and it sounded like a perfect fit, so I contacted Ray Elbe to help me get in. Ray and Monte Cox got me the contract with ONE FC.

You’ll be facing a game Judoka in Yoshiyuki Yoshida. What have you been doing in your training camp to prepare for this fight?
I’ve been sparring hard with a bunch of lefties and eating a lot of Sushi!

Over the years you’ve faced the sport’s best. Who was your toughest opponent to date?

They were all tough, but I’m going to say Evan Tanner. Since he is the one that is gone and I miss seeing him fight. As far as sparring partners go, Shawn Tompkins would spar with me lefty whenever I needed to get ready for a southpaw.  I hope both of those gentlemen rest in peace except for when I’m fighting. That’s when I know they’re in heaven having beers together rooting for me.

You’ve been in many epic battles in the past, my personal favorite one is your fights with Ikuhisa Minowa aka Minowaman in PRIDE. If you had a chance to fight anyone you’ve fought in the past again, who would it be, and why?
Now that you mention it, I’d have to pick Minowa. I’d like to have a rubber match with that busta! The first time we fought was an all out war. At the end of the fight I kicked him in the head, while he was on the ground and stomped it like a grape at least six times till the ref pulled me off. The second time we fought I guess I took his heart in the first battle and he became a scared b****! He dry humped me for fifteen minutes! I didn’t like getting dry humped at all by an Asian with a mullet in speedos! So I’d have to pick him for two reasons. First being because he dry humped me and nobody dry humps the New York Bad Ass and gets away with it! The second is we need to have a tie breaker. I need to one him up and f*** his world up! 

Your New York Bad Ass persona, where did it come from? I’ve always been a fan of your entrances coming to fights wearing your signature shades and robe or leather jacket.
What you see is what you get. I didn’t come up with anything, I am what I am. As for the nick name it was given to me by Joel Gold of Full Contact Fighter after one of my wins.

Being in the game for eleven years you’ve see it go through so many changes and it just constantly evolves. In your opinion what’s the biggest difference from being in the sport when you first started out to today in 2011?

The fighters and why they fight. Guys today see the UFC on TV and see the fame and fortune in it. There are good athletes who want to be famous and make money. When I fought back in the day it was about proving to yourself and everyone out there that you were a gladiator. That you were willing to get in a cage and fight not for the money, but for the respect from your peers and a hard core fan base. It wasn’t about fame or fortune back then. It was about respect and something inside you that made you want to test yourself in the rawest way possible.

Phil your thirty-five years old and have pretty much fought for every major promotion that has existed. Have you thought about what you’re going to do when your fighter career is over?

I’m going to ride this b**** till the wheels fall off. When I do have to retire, I want to train and guide young fighters. Maybe do some commentating and be involved with the sport. Or maybe I’ll move to Thailand and open a w****house. It’s 50/50 for me.

I’ve asked plenty of serious questions; let’s get into something a bit more fun. I like to call this set of questions “the final flurry”:


Favorite food?

P****!

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Favorite thing to do on your spare time?
Besides f***, eat.

What’s playing in your iPod right now? 
Trance music, so I can zone out when I do roadwork.

If someone was working on a movie about your life, which actor would you want to portray you?
Myself of course! Dumb question…..

Thanks for the time Phil and all the best at ONE FC. Would you like to make any shoutouts?
Ya man!  Word to your mother!

Special thanks to James Goyder for helping setup this interview! Also go to ONEFC.com for more info!

Photo: Amir Sadollah, left, fights Phil Baroni at UFC 106 at the Mandalay Events Center on November 21, 2009 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Francis Specker

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