KONDO INTERVIEW
08/13/2004

Yuki Kondo held a press conference at P's LAB, in Tokyo, on August 10 before his August 15th match with Wanderlei Silva.

Asked about his condition, Kondo replied, "I'm stronger than before. If I was 100% when the fight was finalized in May, I'm 150% now. I'll be 170% on the day of the fight. This will be my biggest challenge yet." However, Kondo explained that it's not pressure but "excitement". He said that he's watched all of Silva's fights in PRIDE and nothing has really changed, "He's still an aggressive fighter."

Silva's striking has been a source of pain for many Japanese fighters. Kondo, however, believes that Silva's weakness can be found in his striking itself. "His chance of winning with anything but striking is very low." Kondo said that he wants to strike with Silva, "Looking at his videos, I think Silva's biggest weakness is his guard. I think that if I'm going to win, I think the most likely end is us trading strikes and me KO'ing him."

It looks like things are moving to a striking showdown. Kondo showed us some of his basic training menu and told us that he's increased his punching training, "Left or right, I can win with either." Kondo said that he wouldn't know how the fight will turn out until it actually happens, though. He's counting on his instincts. "I don't ask people about him. Anything they say would only be their opinion. Mine would be different. You can't make a plan and expect it to go exactly that way. Fighting's not that simple."

Although some people have called this a Pancrase vs. PRIDE match, Kondo feels differently, "I don't think that I'm representing Pancrase but, maybe I am representing them in my own way."