Four months ago, former Strikeforce lightweight champion Josh Thomson and current champion Gilbert Melendez clashed for a third time and similar to their previous two outings they went to war for five action packed rounds in an MMA classic.
When the bell sounded at the end of the bout, many fans in attendance and watching at home believed that Thomson had done enough to reclaim the title that was once his but unfortunately the judges didn’t agree. Melendez, who will now defend his title against Pat Healy this Saturday night on Showtime, was awarded the split decision victory over his AKA rival.
Thomson will now fight rising prospect Caros Fodor on the very same card this weekend and look to position himself back into another title fight with either Melendez or Healy. We recently spoke with Thomson on BJPenn.com Radio about a variety of different topics including the Fodor matchup, a potential fourth fight with Gilbert Melendez, the ongoing feud with Josh Koscheck and AKA and much more.
Below are some of the key highlights from our interview with “The Punk”.
On upcoming Caros Fodor fight at Strikeforce: Melendez vs. Healy
“[Fodor] is a good, tough kid and a grinder that is going to be looking to press me against the fence and put pressure on me. He’ll take a couple shots to the chin just to push you up against the fence so we’ve been working a lot on staying tight and not using so much energy,” Thomson told BJPenn.com Radio.
“What’s the worst that he’s going to do? Push me up against the fence? I’m not too concerned [because] he’s strong in the clinch but he’s not going to try to take me down because I’m way better on the ground. It’s just one of those fights where anywhere it goes I feel like I will have an opportunity to win.
He’s probably going to be a little bit stronger than me and he probably hits harder but throughout my whole career, who hasn’t been stronger or hit harder than me? I’m used to it, I’m not a heavy puncher or a very strong guy but I will be prepared anywhere this fight goes. He needs to keep the fight on the feet [to win] and if he can’t do that than he is going to be in a lot of trouble.”
On Gilbert Melendez
“At the time, so much was going on that night that I didn’t really give [Melendez shrugging off the idea of a fourth fight with me] a second wind but when I went back and watched the tape, I mean talk about being disrespectful and I never would have expected something like that coming from him with our past and experience,” Thomson said.
“I’m getting tired of it myself, people twittering me and saying ‘oh man, you won that fight’ and he’s probably tired of people telling him ‘hey, you got your ass kicked’. I got so sick and tired of it that a couple of the Tweets I forwarded directly to him because I’m getting sick of this.
As far as the fighting aspect of it all, it’s like it doesn’t matter as a champion who they ask you to fight. You’re supposed to fight and I think Dana White hit the nail on the head when he said he produced a lot of rich cry babies and a bunch of sniveling [expletive].”
On Josh Koscheck-AKA rivalry
“Koscheck used to live with me for probably a little over a year back when he was training for the GSP fight and the one before that. He would stay with me because it would cost you 500 to 600 dollars a week to stay at a hotel but we really haven’t talked since he left the gym,” Thomson said.
“That’s not because of me, that’s his doing and I think he’s pretty much gone his separate way from the gym and the fighters. I’m just trying to figure out because I’ve known Koscheck for years but I’m trying to figure out if he’s taking really bad acting lessons or if he’s just a really bad actor.
I trained with him for the Diego Sanchez fight because nobody else would spar left handed with him. I was in there with him getting my ass kicked because I’m smaller than him and it’s just one of those things like I never got a thank you or anything.
The funny part is, everyone would just say ‘oh that’s just Koscheck’ and I think when you tell people that you are giving them permission to continue being [expletive]. I think it’s a joke because for the longest time people would say ‘oh he’s just being a punk’ but as years went on I started taking that to be offensive because you’re just allowing him to be a jerk.
That’s something you say to a 10 year old or an 18 year old or even a 22 year old, you know? When you get to a certain age it’s like you’ve got to grow up, dude. I mean, grow up already you’re 35 years old and it’s the dumbest thing ever and seems more like a ploy to get attention and get business for his gym and he needs all the help he can get to make money. It’s almost like watching the freaking Kardashian’s with how dramatic he is.
I can see where Koscheck is coming from because Javier does have his lazy days but I don’t know what coach that has been doing it as long as he has doesn’t have those lazy days. Another thing too is that when ‘Kos’ was there, there was a time where Javier would walk in and say ‘ok, we’re going to this, this and this today’ and you have guys like Koscheck who would say ‘I won’t [expletive] do that’. Then it’s like I said you go back to giving in to that whole idea ‘well, that’s just Koscheck being Koscheck let’s just give in to him today’ but then it turns into every day.”
“Then it just caters around to what he wants to do and the whole team suffers because of it. It’s probably for the best that he went his own way and we went our way. I respect the crap out of him and learned a lot from Koscheck but I think with what’s going on right now with the drama it just seems like he’s trying to play it up for money and trying to be the center of attention.”
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