by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com
Alistair Overeem has a hit list and after he puts away Brett Rogers, he has his sights set on only one fighter: Fedor Emelianenko.
With Overeem just days away from his first title defense of the Strikeforce heavyweight belt, the Dutch fighter respects the opponent he’s about to face on May 15, but doesn’t see much struggle in getting past him.
Once he is past him, Overeem says Fedor and his management team have no excuses left and must face him and settle it in the cage once and for all.
As for Brett Rogers getting a shot at his title, he simply says they pay me to fight, and that’s what I’m going to do.
“I am a pro fighter. I have signed several contracts through my management with different promoters and I fight if the price is right. I would have wanted to fight against Fedor, but I guess his management has other ‘priorities’ for him,” said Overeem in an interview with MMAWeekly.com “So I will prove to the world after I win against Rogers that Fedor must accept the fight with me.”
What is the ultimate hold-up in Overeem facing Fedor? Is it Strikeforce? Is it Fedor himself? Overeem chalks it up to one word.
“Politics,” Overeem answered. “I am the current champion, but the management of Fedor said no.”
Overeem went on to explain the backtalk and harsh words that came from Fedor’s manager, Vadim Finkelstein, and that when he beats Rogers they will have no choice but to sign for the fight that he’s been requesting for over a year.
“This Vadim guy apologized to me. First Vadim said he did not say those things he said about me then some reporter from sports.ru taped the conversation and brought the tape out in the open,” Overeem revealed. “It made him look like a fool and he apologized.
“It says something about the level of management. Fedor proved himself as the best, but he has not been really fighting a lot in the last years because of bad management. I have fighting rhythm and got stronger and competed also in the best stand-up league in the world and got a third place at the WGP K-1 finals in 2009, something Fedor never did.”
After the fight with Rogers, Overeem hopes to compete in Strikeforce at least two more times this year, but will also fight for K-1 at the end of September and December in their tournament.
And while the Dutch wrecking machine understands that Rogers does pose danger to him, like any fighter in MMA, he also knows that he has the perfect weapons to dispose of Fedor Emelianenko and that’s his final goal.
“He is big and has a strong punch, but I have fought way better and stronger opponents than him. I do not see much problems for me in this fight,” Overeem said about Rogers. “(Fedor) is the name to beat and I am the chosen one who can do this.”