Exclusive: Korean Zombie "I want that belt!"
We were fortunate enough to catch up with rising Korean Top Team star Chan Sung Jung to ask him some questions about his MMA career, as well as his next fight. Here is what the ‘Korean Zombie’ had to say:
Chris: First off thank you very much for taking the time to talk to us Chan. You were born and raised in South Korea, is this where you began your mixed martial arts training? What was it that attracted you to learning MMA?
Chan: I started kickboxing when I was 17. I went to a college that had an MMA major, so that is when I started getting into MMA. When I was younger, I was kind of weak, so I started training to get stronger. Since MMA combines all of the different disciplines together, it’s fun to mix it all up.
Chris: You started learning Hapkido at a young age, could you talk a little about the Korean based mixed martial art known as Hapkido and what is involved? Do you still use any Hapkido techniques when you fight today?
Chan: Hapkido uses a lot of kicking and teaches you to land properly when thrown or slammed. I don’t mean to disrepect Hapkido in any way, but I don’t think there are any Hapkido techniques that I use directly in MMA. However, it does work as a basis of martial arts for kicking and landing. All martial arts have value in some way or another. That can’t be ignored.
Chris: You are set to face Dustin Poirier in the main event on May 15th at UFC on Fuel TV: Korean Zombie vs. Poirier. What do you know about Dustin and what will it take to defeat him?
Chan: He’s a tough, well-rounded fighter. He’s also very exciting so, it’s a great matchup for us to fight each other. For me to beat him, I think I need to be better than him in all aspects of the game, which I’m confident that I am! The fans are in for a show!
Chris: I am looking forward to it! You tweeted this back in February “Dustin Poirier? 6 Seconds!” He responded saying “Trust me you don’t want this… I will expose you.” Has there been any follow up trash talk since then? Is there legitimate ‘bad blood’ between the two of you?
Chan: Nah… There’s no bad blood. I have no reason not to like the guy. The stuff on Twitter was just hype. The fans like a little showmanship, so it’s part of the job. But, at the end of the day, I consider us co-workers at the same company.
Chris: This fight with Poirier is considered to be a possible #1 contenders match. What would getting a shot at the UFC Featherweight belt mean to you and the country of Korea? Are you expecting a title fight with a victory over Dustin?
Chan: To get a shot at the Featherweight belt would be ideal. Korea hasn’t had a UFC titleholder yet, so it would be a very big deal. Right now Ben Henderson is the Lightweight Champion and he’s got a lot of fans here in Korea. He’s a great guy and could be a big star here! But, for a Korean fighter, who lives and trains here, to hold a UFC title… I think it would be HUGE!
I think the winner of this fight will probably be next in line for Aldo. With the timing and other considerations, it seems like it makes the most sense. I would love a shot at Aldo!
Chris: I would love to see that fight! Is the ‘Korean Zombie’ the man to take the title from Jose Aldo? Have you thought about fighting him and what kind of strategy would be required to defeat him?
Chan: Yes. If I didn’t truly believe that, I wouldn’t be doing what I’m doing. I think most fighters in the UFC are there because they believe they are, or at least want to be, the best. I always want to fight the toughest guy, the best guy. That’s my goal. I want that belt!
Chris: You are coming off of 2 very impressive stoppage victories over Mark Hominick and Leonard Garcia. You submitted Garcia with the 1st ‘twister’ in UFC history and recorded the fastest knockout in UFC history over Mark Hominick, in just 6 seconds. You must be really happy with those amazing accomplishments and the bonuses that you have recieved for your efforts.
Chan: Absolutely! Really, I’ve been lucky so far. I couldn’t have dreamed these things up, but somehow it just happened. So, to say I’m happy would be an understatement. I’m incredibly lucky!
Chris: Well thank you very much for taking the time to talk with me Chan. You are an extremely exciting fighter and I speak for everyone when I say we can’t wait to see you throw down on May 15th! Good luck to you and all the best in 2012! Any last words from The Korean Zombie?
Chan: As always, I want to thank the fans all over the world. Also, I hope that I can continue to do well and do what I can for Korean MMA. MMA in Korea is getting more and more popular and we want the UFC to come and hold an event here as soon as possible. I think the Korean fans would love it and it would be great for the UFC as well. Also, I hope to see a lot of Korean flags in Fairfax on May 15! Thanks to BJPenn.com!
Check out @KoreanZombieMMA and “The Korean Zombie Warwagon” on Facebook!