“In regard to Rogers, I think he is a very serious opponent. I think he is very physically strong, and possesses significant knockout power. And I think that taking this into account, Andrei [Arlovski] was too quick to decide to stand and trade with him, and missed a punch. And also I think, and this is my personal opinion, that he was too quick to train and fight again. No matter how good a sportsman he is, he sometimes misses head punches and that means a concussion yet again, and I think he took the fight too early. He should have had more time off to recuperate…You know, I’m being really honest here. I am equally interested in a fight with either Belfort or Rogers. I’ve never fought with either one. I used to watch Belfort fight, even before I started competing. So there is a history there for me with him. It is very interesting to me; he was a fighter who faced and beat a lot of the greatest fighters in MMA at the time. Rogers is a fighter who is tearing through the heavyweight division with 10 fights and 10 wins. And, I have to add, he beat Arlovski…To be honest, in terms of his speed at that weight, I honestly don’t know if being heavier is an advantage with a fighter who is as fast as him at his current weight. I have always found it harder to fight the lighter, faster guys, rather than the really big, plodding heavy and super heavyweights. And Belfort has always stood out in terms of his speed.”
—Fedor actually speaking in detail to Sherdog about his two potential opponents for Affliction “Trilogy.”
It’s pretty interesting to hear Fedor basically say that Vitor Belfort would be a more difficult challenge for him than Brett Rogers because of the speed factor. It’s the argument the Xtreme Couture camp is presenting (Randy says Vitor has a good of a chance as Barnett did), and to an extent they’re right (although I’m not convinced Vitor is that much faster than Fedor). Fedor has always had the speed advantage in his fights with maybe the exception of Cro Cop who was pretty damn quick in his prime, so what happens when he doesn’t? Is the Cro Cop fight the one we look to for comparisons? I still don’t like the fight, but if it happens, this is the angle we’ll have to look at it from to get ourselves hyped.
By the way, Josh Gross mentioned on the JBS Show that he’s hearing the door’s not necessarily closed on Rogers yet despite what Strikeforce said yesterday. Maybe that’s why it’s taking so long to get confirmation from Affliction.