Phil “The New York Bad Ass” Baroni (15-15 MMA) is riding high following his TKO victory over Rodrigo Ribeiro at ONE FC: Pride of a Nation, which took place August 31st in Manila, Phillipinnes. The victory, which came by way of soccer kicks and punches, took only a minute and snapped a two fight losing skid for “NYBA”. Baroni talked with Chris Taylor of bjpenn.com about his next fight, his MMA career thus far and his future aspirations. Here is their conversation:
Taylor: Hey Phil, I heard you have a new fight booked for December?
Baroni: Yea, it’s December 2nd in Japan’s “Glory World Series”, I will be fighting the
rating pancrase welterweight champion Takenori Sato.
Taylor: So how did this fight with “Glory World Series” come about? I was expecting
to see you back in ONE FC after defeating Rodrigo Ribeiro in such dominant
Baroni: I was fielding offers after my last win and Glory World Series was my best
option. I was expecting to be back in ONE FC as well, I actually turned down
a fight in Italy with Glory because I was expecting to fight right away again for
Taylor: Your opponent for the December 2nd “GWS” show is the current pancrase
welterweight champion Takenori Sato, who has gone 5-0-1 in his past six fights.
What do you know about Sato and what will it take to defeat him Tokyo?
Baroni: Well now I know that he has gone 5-0-1 in his last six fights, but I don’t give
a f*** if he has gone 100-0! It doesn’t mean shit once you step into the ring!
Who has he fought and who has he beat? And that doesn’t matter as much
as how his preparation went for his fight with me. That’s what will matter
most in the end.
Taylor: After looking over Sato’s resume, the only name I really recognized was Yuki
Kondo (to whom he lost), a man you fought and made quick work of while under
the Pride banner. How do you see this fight with Sato playing out?
Baroni: Yeah true, but he his on a multi-fight and multi-year win streak, so I don’t think they are bringing in the 36 year-old “NYBA” to help resurrect his career. I’m a
little name over there, one I’m sure they would like to have under Sato’s belt.
If I was a betting man, which I am, I’d be calling Joey Bagels down in Costa
Rica and betting the house on myself!
Taylor: How big was your latest win over Ribeiro? That was the first knockout loss he’s
suffered in his career, and your first KO win in four years.
Baroni: The win was really big. I needed a win like that. I needed to come out, fight
hard and look good. I don’t think the fight could have gone any better for me.
Taylor: Looking at your MMA career, I noticed that you have had more success
overseas than at home in the U.S. You are 6-3 when fighting overseas with
all six wins coming by way of stoppage. What would you attribute your overseas
Baroni: I think that I have fought better overseas because I have better focus when
fighting abroad. It’s the plane ride over, being in a foreign place, you’re out of
your element and know why you are there and what your business is. If there is
anything to it, I’d have to say it is my focus. I’m a road warrior baby!
Taylor: You have been fighting in MMA for 12 years now. During that time you have
fought some of the biggest names in the sport, headlined events, and worked
for the largest fight organizations possible. Looking back, what would you say is
the best moment so far in the career of “NYBA”?
Baroni: To be honest my last win was huge. I felt great, it was awesome! That win and
my first win in Pride is when I’ve felt happiest. I was generally relieved after my
first Pride fight, and just happy and grateful in Manila.
Taylor: Now looking forward, what do you hope to accomplish in the last few years of
your MMA career? Is there a particular goal you have in mind, where if you
were to accomplish it, you could just walk away and be happy to call it quits?
Baroni: Man, I don’t know. If I won something big, like a huge fight or big prize maybe.
To be honest, that would probably make me even happier and want to just fight
more. I’m just gonna keep going until I don’t want to anymore or until my
body just gives out.
Taylor: If you could rematch any one of your previous opponents, who would you
choose to fight and why?
Baroni: I’ve actually been asked this a lot lately. My answer is Evan Tanner, because
it would mean the guy is still alive.
Taylor: Alright, well thanks again for taking the time to talk with me Phil. I hope things
work out for you this December in Tokyo. Any last words from the “New York
Baroni: I want to thank my fans for all the support over the years. I want to thank my mom for being the best mom. I want to thank my wife for not giving up on me and believing I could get it together when nobody else did. Haha who am I kidding. My manager, Monte Cox, for guiding my career correctly, about ****ing time I had some guidance. I also want to thank my brand “Future Legend”, they just gave me a nice big bonus check that has helped greatly with my move to Cali from Vegas, which took a lot of pressure off my back. So go and support Future Legend and the UGC! Also big thanks to my sponsor facialabuse.com!
I just want to let my fans know I appreciate the support and yeah we have had a little rough go as of late, but as my mentor Mark Coleman would say “I’m on it!”. Meaning I’m in the gym everyday, on a diet and training hard 2-times a day! I’m living right, living a ‘champions lifestyle’. I am currently in training with a great, if not the best camp in the land, and I deserve to win… Ah you know what… I’m ****ing this Jap up! End of interview, this busta is getting smashed on December 2nd!