(Martin Kampmann: Even when he grooms his eyebrows it’s intense.)
In the lead up to Saturday’s UFC 121: Lesnar vs. Velsasquez show in Anaheim, a major talking point has been Jake Shields‘s highly anticipated UFC debut. Lost in all the hype and Jake-centric media coverage is Shields’s opponent Martin Kampmann, who has taken out names like Paulo Thiago, Carlos Condit, and Thales Leites during his 10-fight run in the Octagon.
Martin was a guest on the latest episode of The Bum Rush Radio Show, where he discussed being underestimated by fans, and agreed with the widespread opinion that Jake Shields is boring a fighter. For the benefit of you lazy bastards who haven’t subscribed to our show yet, we’ve reprinted an excerpt below…
CAGEPOTATO.COM: It seems like all the media attention in this fight is on your opponent. You have Dana White saying Jake Shields will likely get a title shot if he beats you…do you feel overlooked or disrespected in any way by how this fight is being promoted, or presented in the media?
MARTIN KAMPMANN: He’s getting a lot of hype, and I feel sometimes people underestimate me. People underestimated me for my last fight too, they were counting me out then as well, but I proved everybody wrong, and I plan to prove everybody wrong in this fight as well…I’m in the UFC to achieve my goals, and Jake’s just another guy in the way.
If Jake Shields is being offered a title shot if he beats you, do you think the same offer should extend to you? If you beat Shields, are you worthy of the next shot?
Yeah, I definitely think so. If he can earn a title shot coming in from Strikeforce with his first fight in the UFC…this is my 11th fight in the UFC, so I think I’ve paid my dues. Of course it’s up to the UFC who gets the title shot, but I definitely think that it’ll put me up in #1 contender status with a win.
What are your overall impressions of Jake as a fighter? Lately he’s been getting a bad reputation as a boring fighter. Do you agree with that?
Yeah I think sometimes his fights tend to be boring. There’s rarely much action in the striking department in his fights. He’s really good at what he does, he tries to get people to the ground and dominate them from on top. He’s got a really good grappling game, he’s one of the best grapplers in the welterweight division, but yeah, I think sometimes it tends to make a boring fight.
Considering what Shields was able to do to Dan Henderson in April, have you been focusing more on takedown defense in training?
Oh definitely, I think the key to the fight’s gonna come down to defending the takedown. I feel confident fighting him wherever the fight goes, but I think I’ll definitely have the bigger advantage when the fight’s standing. I’m sure he’s going to try take me down, he does that in all his fights, so I’m well prepared.