Chael Sonnen has quickly emerged as one of the most outspoken fighters in the game. He blasted Yushin Okami for failing to help sell their fight. He trashed Anderson Silva for pretending to not understand English (he has more for Anderson below). And here he is again basically calling out every fighter who has ever said they have a game plan and dedicate themselves to being a “full-time fighter.”
“Here’s the truth: There is no such thing as a game plan. You get these guys, most of whom are eighth-grade dropouts, and they sit around with their gold teeth and their broken English and they act as if they’re some kind of experts in the fight game. There is no such thing [as a game plan]. My skills are my skills…This whole game plan thing, yes, I do have a plan, but it’s still based within my skill set. I can’t come out and say, ‘Wow, a spinning roundhouse sure would work great on Nate,’ when I don’t know how to do a spinning roundhouse. There really is no such thing. This whole game plan thing really should be credited to Randy [Couture, the former UFC heavyweight champion]…Look, Randy took people down, put them against the fence and beat them until [referee] John McCarthy pulled him off. And then [UFC television analyst] Joe Rogan’s on the mic yelling, ‘What a great game plan!’ Well, I guess, but it’s the same thing he does every time. If you want to act like this sport is sophisticated, then you can pretend you have a plan.”
“I don’t do camps. I’ve heard guys do that…Look, it’s three hours a day. I go two hours with my team every day, and that includes my shower. Our workout is about an hour and 40 minutes, and I do another session of about 45 to 50 minutes of conditioning and strength training at a different time in the day. That leaves me 21 hours in the day to contribute something to society…These fighters who like to say, ‘I’m a full-time fighter,’ when you hear that, you know you can be assured of a few things. You can be assured that that guy doesn’t get up until noon. You can be assured that that guy is pretty lazy and you can be sure he owns something called a Nintendo Wii because he has nothing else to do with his day and he’s attempting to justify his existence by saying, ‘I am a fighter.’..Look: I have friends who spend more time playing golf each day than a fighter who trains hard spends in the practice room. Every now and then, you’ll get one of these guys who claims he’s training six or eight hours a day, which, first off, he’s not. And second, even if he were to, he could not possibly be doing intense training. I train extremely hard; I don’t know anyone who trains as hard as me, and I’m in the practice room no more than three hours a day. There’s plenty of time in the day to do other things.”
Funny enough, Sonnen doesn’t actually have anything nasty to say about his upcoming opponent, Nate Marquardt. Apparently, for every “dirt bag in this business” there’s a “decent human being” like Nate Marquardt. I’m guessing he doesn’t feel the same about Anderson Silva because he took another shot at him and attempted to discredit Matt Hughes’ accomplishments all in the same breath.
“Look, he’s not my kind of a guy. This is a grown man that’s got earrings. This is a grown man who wears his hat sideways. This is a guy who wears pink T-shirts. This guy wouldn’t make it 12 minutes in my neighborhood. I live in a nice neighborhood and we’d still run him out…I’m not on board with this ‘Anderson is so scary,’ mentality. What’s he ever done? What’s he done? He beat up my teammate, Chris Leben. He was my teammate. … He beat up Patrick Cote, who was not ranked in the top 10 and we found Patrick was fighting on one leg at the time of the fight. He beats up every bum who can get a plane ticket to Ohio and he beats up a couple of slow, unathletic light heavyweights, like that’s hard to do. I don’t know what he’s done. I don’t know where this big mystique that’s around him has come from…It’s like when [ex-UFC welterweight champion] Matt Hughes was king of the world. Matt Hughes fought two guys in the top 10 ever, and they both beat him. So, if you want to say the guy’s [Silva] great, fine, but who’s he beat? He’s going to have to fight somebody. And it might as well be me.”
For whatever reason, Sonnen also ripped Mark Coleman on Pro MMA Radio this week. I can understand calling out Anderson Silva, but belittling Randy Couture, Mark Coleman and Matt Hughes while simultaneously trashing virtually every fighter who trains “full-time” is a little puzzling. If Sonnen is trying to alienate himself from the MMA community, he’s doing a damn good job of it.
Update: Chael Sonnen tells Ariel Helwani everything he says is the truth, he doesn’t believe he said anything controversial and the media is taking his statements out of context.