19 Questions for Tim Sylvia

On Lesnar’s Credibility

Dec 16, 2008
Photo by Sherdog.com

Sylvia feels Lesnar
is wrong for the sport.
Sherdog.com: Do you think Lesnar’s a good champion and ambassador for the sport?

Sylvia: I think it’s wrong for the sport. I don’t think he’s got enough credibility yet. Obviously anything can happen in the sport, and he beat a great guy, but s--t, he’s only had four fights. I think it hurts the UFC’s credibility a little bit just because you have a WWE wrestling star who’s the heavyweight champ.

Sherdog.com: Do you think the Lesnar hype is warranted?

Sylvia: Definitely. He is a hell of an athlete. Obviously he does get better and better each fight. He’s doing the right things to become a better fighter.

Sherdog.com: Is it disheartening to you to see someone with his lack of experience come in like that and get a title shot?

Sylvia: I just think they should have done some different things. I don’t think they should have [given] him a title shot. I think they should have let Nogueira and Frank fight, and the winner fights Randy. Give Brock the loser of that fight, and if he wins, it puts him in title contention or something. Give him a couple more fights or something. There’s nothing you can say or do now; he’s the heavyweight champion of the world.

Sherdog.com: As someone who fought both Frank Mir and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, who wins their clash at UFC 92 on Dec. 27?

Sylvia: I think I’m gonna give Nogueira the slight edge just ’cause he has the better stand-up. I think for Frank to win he’s obviously gonna have to get it to the ground, but Nogueira’s never been submitted. Frank’s big strength is Nogueira’s best strength, and I think Nogueira is a little bit better at submissions. If I had to rank those guys in the world as being the best MMA fighters at submissions, I’m ranking Nogueira first and Frank second. I’m gonna take Nogueira.

Sherdog.com: Since you picked Nogueira to advance in the unofficial heavyweight tournament the UFC put together, will he beat Lesnar?

Sylvia: I do think Nogueira will beat Lesnar. Nogueira can take a hell of a beating, and before you know it, he ends up catching an arm or a choke. He beat Bob Sapp [and Mirko] “Cro Cop” [Filipovic]. I mean, the guy’s always around, always in the fight no matter what’s happened to him.

Sherdog.com: You’re managed by Monte Cox, and he runs Adrenaline MMA. Is fighting for that promotion on the table for you?

Sylvia: I’ve signed with them. I was supposed to have a fight Dec. 11, [but] he decided to put Ben [Rothwell] on the card and [have him] fight to keep Ben active, and then my fight fell through.

Sherdog.com: Can Adrenaline offer you those top 10 fights you desire?

Sylvia: They have to go out there and spend the money to get them. It’s not up to me. All I have to do is show up and fight. If they want to get the other guy and spend the money to get him, then so be it, but that’s not really up to me. I’m a free agent. I can fight wherever and whenever. If they want to put me on the card against a top 10 guy, then so be it. I’ll do it.
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