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KJ Noons: “I have respect for the main event but we are probably going to steal the show.”

Ask Strikeforce lightweight KJ Noons for his honest opinion on a subject and chances are he’ll be more than willing to oblige. While most professional athletes are concerned with regulating their soundbytes to be as politically correct as possible, Noons appears to be unafraid of speaking his mind even when his thoughts may not necessarily be the most popular opinion available.

The 27-year old striker recently sat down with media during a conference call and opened up on not only his approach to facing opponent Jorge Gurgel at this weekend’s “Strikeforce – Houston” event, but also his feelings on fighting in the town he grew up in, an eventual rematch with Nick Diaz, and UFC President Dana White’s lack of respect for boxing.

Noons began by reflecting on how his experience as a boxer might translate into the fight against Gurgel, saying, “There are two different disciplines; you have to be committed to whatever discipline you are working at. But I definitely take a lot of skills and the things I have learned from boxing into my MMA game. The past two fights, I haven’t been a full all-around fighter so I am really looking forward to coming out and being an all-around fighter for this next fight. I am especially really excited about my opponent and when you put our two styles in the ring you are really going to have a lot of fireworks. In my eyes, Jorge is the No. 1 contender so this a top fight for me. By no means am I acting like I have this one in the bag. I am training as hard as I can. This is probably one of the most dangerous opponents I have had.”

“Jorge comes out and puts on great shows, but if you want to watch jiuitsu, go to a tournament. This is fighting. If you want to see some lame fighting go watch the UFC, go watch something boring as hell. If you want to see something exciting, come August 21st and see a guy who’s been boxing his whole life and someone who has a black belt in jiujitsu. This is what people want to see,” continued Noons when asked about how he saw his bout unfolding. “Houston is a great town, I am really glad Strikeforce is coming here. It is a great event. I think once the fighters get here, they’ll see how excited the town is going to be. I am really excited to be on the card with all these people. This is a great fight town. And home field advantage? It doesn’t matter. I am ready to bring my best. I have a lot of respect for Jorge. It’s going to be a great fight. I’m bringing my best. That’s it.”

His remark about the UFC wasn’t the last time “King Karl” targeted the promotion in a comment. The 9-2 Noons, who has won his last five consecutive fights, also brought up the home of the Octagon when asked about a potential rematch with Strikeforce welterweight champ Nick Diaz. The two previously threw down in November 2007 with Noons emerging victor based on the amount of damage he dished out to Diaz’s face. They were later slated to face off a second time in the now-defunct EliteXC promotion with the situation boiling over at one point in the form an in-ring scuffle between both fighters’ camps.

“Most definitely, even though I’m not looking past Jorge,” said Noons on the possibility of fighting Diaz. “I’m not looking at (lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez). I’m not going to wait for anybody and I still want to box. I’m probably one of the only ones with fourteen pro boxing fights. (Strikeforce CEO) Scott Coker has allowed me to box outside of Strikeforce and I think that is going to be really interesting in the future with people like Dana White making a real mockery out of boxing and having James Toney fight Randy Couture. So I have no problem as long as it is okay with Scott to fight a pro boxer. This is all in the future but right now Jorge is on my mind.”

“Dana is trying to make a mockery out of boxing, but if Randy gets caught he is going to sleep,” he added.

However, Noons made it clear his focus was still on Mixed Martial Arts regardless of his interest in pursuing a boxing title. “I am totally committed to MMA right now. This is just an option that is open in my contract. I want to get back on the MMA scene, stay busy fighting, show my loyalty to Strikeforce and Scott (Coker), and when the opportunity comes up I will be back in boxing.”

“It’s going to be a great show next week in Houston. I am very excited about my opponent. I don’t have to say it very much but look at his track record: he has the fight of the night, and look at my track record (and I) always (have) fight of the night. Put us in the cage and you are going to get fireworks. I have respect for the main event but we are probably going to steal the show. I am ready man – this is what it’s all about. This is fighting. On August 21st you are going to get your money’s worth!”

On top of Noons’ energetic scrap with Gurgel taking place on Showtime, “Strikeforce – Houston” also features a pair of championship bouts as light heavyweight “King Mo” Lawal defends his belt against Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante and Tim Kennedy battles Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza for Strikeforce’s vacant middleweight strap. Former professional wrestler Bobby Lashley also looks to maintain his perfect record (5-0) against Chad Griggs on the card.

Stay tuned to Five Ounces of Pain for live coverage from Houston this weekend!

  • Wow, this fight should be outstanding probably the best SF card since the first Fedor appearance, too bad SF’s camerawork and bad announcing will only make it semi tolerable to watch.

  • MCM says:

    This does look like a good card.
    I am looking forward to his fight with Gurgel, and I agree that it should steal the show. But bad mouthing the UFC just seams to be a good way to put a glass ceiling on your MMA career.

  • hindsightufuk says:

    man i hope Jorge chokes this chump unconcious

  • Guthookd says:

    “I have respect for the main event but we are probably going to steal the show”

    I have got to agree there.

    I hear you Hindsight, but what are the chances. Gurgel is a BJJ blackbelt true, but he clearly prefers striking. I would be really surprized if he even attempts to bring it to the ground.

    Noons by TKO round 2.

    When is Bobby going to fight a fighter?

  • Rece Rock says:

    “Jorge comes out and puts on great shows, but if you want to watch jiuitsu, go to a tournament. This is fighting. If you want to see some lame fighting go watch the UFC, go watch something boring as hell…”

    KJ it’s called mixed martial arts for a reason… KJ what promotion are you signed to? Hmmm speaking of lame and boring…

  • MMA-LOGIC says:

    “When is Bobby going to fight a fighter?”

    I have to take issue with this. They are not touting him as anything he is not, he is only 5 fights into his MMA career and has already fought guys like Sapp and Sims and is a rising prospect not a contender. I would like to see him fight at least 2 or 3 more times before he gets a Sylvia or Monson level of opponent. Perhaps Griggs followed by a Thomson or Fujita and then we have reason to bitch if the level of opponent is not a lot higher than his past few but 5 fights into a career is a little early to complain too much.
    As for Jorge. How the hell did a guy who has only had 1 stoppage in his last 9 (and that was a loss) get so popular?. This guy’s popularity is as much of a mystery to me as Jardine’s is. I can’t stand either and to be honest half the reason is because they are b grade fighters that were dropped by the UFC because they kept losing.
    It looks like Noons is taking a page out of Dana’s promoting hand book and trying to hype up SF and his fight by insulting other organisations and their fighters. Not a good look.

  • danw84 says:

    Completely agreed about Lashley. Because he has a known name, that means he should be out there fighting guys like Lesnar, JDS, Fedor, etc.? The EXTREME VAST MAJORITY of professional MMA fighters have a record of “who?” for their first several to many fights. Lashley may be known, but he is still inexperienced and it’s just as unfair to put him against someone he’s not ready for as it is to put anyone else against someone they aren’t ready for.


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