Tim Sylvia retained the UFC Heavyweight Title this past weekend in his rubber match with Andrei Arlovski. When asked how Arlovski was different the third time around at the UFC 61 post-fight press conference, Sylvia said, “I really don’t think he was different at all… we were different. We came in with a little different game plan. We worked my right side a little better. When we countered, we also faded. When he threw punches, I faded and was able to throw my big right.”
When asked about his reach advantage and the role that it played in the fight, Sylvia said, “Obviously, I have a big reach advantage… we went back and re-taught myself to throw my jab. I’ve been in a habit to throw my jab and not bring it back, being a little lazy. We didn’t do that this time, so when he tried to come over the top, he hit my shoulder. He didn’t hit my open jaw.”
Very few people expected this fight to go the distance. When asked if there was too much respect being shown between the two fighters, Sylvia commented, “I wouldn’t say there’s too much respect. I’d just say there’s two smart guys going out there and fighting a smart game plan.”
At the press conference, Sylvia continued, “Hats off to him [Arlovski]… I was surprised he didn’t go down. I hit him with some good, flush shots. I stunned him, but he did not fall. I don’t know what the hell he did in the last three months, but he did fix that weak chin.”
Two big guys banging for five rounds has to take its toll on the body. In response to a question about how his knuckles felt, Sylvia said, ” They’re a little sore, along with my head, and my knees, and my feet, my forearm, and my elbow… but, you know, what do you expect?”
To see Tim Sylvia’s one-on-one Video Interview, go to MMAWeekly TV.