Both Japanese and foreign fighters gathered together to compete in the May 22nd PRIDE BUSHIDO Vol. 7, giving performances that were more exciting than anyone had imagined. Among them, a couple of foreign fighters stood out. We have an exclusive interview with Yves Edwards, who in the 1st fight of the night became the first man to submit Dokonjyonosuke Mishima.
Thanks. (laughing) I'm really happy that I was able to get my first win in PRIDE. I was able to surprise my opponent and I'm very happy with the way I won. This fight was a big game for me. I punched well and Mishima gave a great fight, too. Beating him gave me confidence. Mishima probably looked down on me before but beating someone like him is a big thing. PRIDE fans are the greatest and the arena was huge so it was an incredible atmosphere.
Mishima said that he has beaten you before in America. Do you remember that?
It was in an event called Euphoria in February. Of course, I remember. We didn't understand each other's language them and go only exchange 2 or 3 words, but we respected each other as fighters. Mishima is a fighter worthy of respect. We're both good fighters so I thought we would eventually face each other.
Mishima has never tapped to a joint-lock before and he is really good at grappling. It was shocking to see you, a striker, submit him.
(laughing) Really? That's my favorite technique. That was my favorite, and my best, pattern. Mishima likes to be on top, so his pattern is to sweep from the bottom and gain top position. I was in the top position then and working to pound him. I tried to get a kimura on Mishima from the half-guard. When he did that, he tried to sweep me, just as I expected, but there was a little space in between us. Mishima tried to get top position when I went for the kimura. I knew he was going to do that so I pretended to get swept and went for the arm-bar.
You're closer to having a fight with Gomi or Kawajiri now that you've beaten Mishima.
Their fights left the biggest impression. I've lost to Kawajiri before. He's a strong fighter, of course, and I watched him carefully because I think we will eventually get a rematch. I was surprised that Gomi became so emotional in the end. (laughing) Azeredo must have done something in the match to make him mad. Gomi did become emotional but he was able to cool down. The fight itself was good. It was incredible that Azeredo came out and fought with an entirely different game plan, even though he and Buscape had a jiu-jitsu match. Minowa's fight was exciting, too. Minowa is a great fighter but Phil showed heart until the end in that fight.
Both. There are 3 top fighters in the world in the -73kg weight class: Shooto's Kawajiri, BUSHIDO's Gomi and UFC's Edwards...me. I think all of us are dangerous to the others. All 3 of us were influenced by Shooto and we are all strong fighters that came from Shooto. Now, the 3 top fighters in the world are standing in the same BUSHIDO ring. In the end, I want to beat them and stand at the top.