SHOCKWAVE 2004 INTERVIEW
12/31/2004
Stefan Leko

Pride Fighting Championships: How old are you?
Stefan Leko: 30.
Pride: What's your weight for the fight?
Leko: 95 kg.
Pride: 50-12-1-1 record in kickboxing. Does that sound about right?
Leko: Sure.
Pride: And, of course, you've beaten the likes of Remy Bojansky, Francisco Filho, Mike Bernardo and Peter Aerts.
Leko: Yes.
Pride: You started training karate at the age of 9?
Leko: Yes and I did taekwondo in Croatia until I was 14.
Pride: Then you moved back to Germany and started muay thai and kickboxing.
Leko: Yes.
Pride: You had surgery after the Ogawa fight. For what?
Leko: Herniated disc.
Pride: Was it in the neck?
Leko: No. It was in the lower back, between the 4th and 5th thing.
Pride: Are you fully recovered now?
Leko: After the Ogawa fight, I went right into surgery to have an operation. After that, 5 weeks of rest and then started training. Then, I fucked my back up. I was very disappointed. I thought it would never go away. I took a rest for 3 or 4 months after that, just exercising my back and resting. Holiday and sunshine.
Pride: Did you have surgery again?
Leko: Again, 2 times. I said that I'm going to make a holiday and do special exercise for my back. Since September, I've trained hard.
Pride: How long have you been able to train this time around?
Leko: 3 or 4 months.
Pride: What have you been working on in training?
Leko: Everything.
Pride: Who have you been training with mostly?
Leko: Golden Glory.
Pride: What is your New Year's Resolution?
Leko: To win.
Pride: For next year? In your personal life?
Leko: I don't know. I'm looking forward to more parties.
Pride: How's the ground game coming along, since you have a mostly standup background?
Leko: It's good. No problems with my back. In the beginning, I had a little problem with my back. I learned a lot from this injury. Before, I was always stupid. If I had an injury, I thought I would take one month of rest and after that, I started training again. It was a mistake. Now I think that if you have an injury, rest for half a year.
Pride: What do you know about Minowa?
Leko: Nothing. I will watch some videos after the rule meeting.
Pride: Are you looking to keep this standing?
Leko: Of course.
Pride: A lot of people didn't know about the injury going into the fight with Ogawa. Do you feel that you have to show them that that guy wasn't the real you?
Leko: Yeah. Listen. I didn't train for 4 months. I had a disc injury, since the September before that. I wanted to cancel my fight but I spoke to PRIDE and I took Ogawa too easy. He looks like a beginner in the ring. I took him too easy and I lost the fight but I didn't train for 4 months. I was not prepared. No sparring, nothing. I was only concentrating on the takedown in the ring. This time, I will be different.