Andrei Arlovski’s Manager Blasts Critics, Says Veteran Committed to Comeback
By Kelsey Mowatt
When Andrei Arlovski was violently knocked out by Sergei Kharitonov in February, speculation as to whether the former UFC champion would retire as a result of his fourth straight defeat was not unheard of. For critics, the fact that the Belrussian fighter had been stopped in three of his four consecutive losses was enough to conclude that Arlovski’s career should come to a close. For others, subpar performances against quality opponents, rather than diminished capabilities, were the reasons behind the 32 year-old veteran’s prolonged struggles.
Of course, Arlovski never announced his retirement and reports recently surfaced that the heavyweight would compete at Pro Elite’s upcoming August 27th event in Honolulu, Hawaii. Although the fighter’s manager Leo Khorlinsky wouldn’t confirm to FCF that indeed Arlovski is competing next month, he was quick to fire back at those who have already closed the book on the heavyweight’s career.
“I don’t think much of these critics. I’m very skeptical of what they say because the minute you’re on top, they’re your biggest advocate, and the minute you fall down they become your critics,” Khorlinsky told FCF. “To me these people don’t really mean much you know? You can talk about chins, you can talk about that, but I haven’t seen a single person to date who could take a punch right on the chin and not go down. Everybody goes down.”
“He’s not ready to hang it up,” Khorlinsky added. “Obviously these world famous trainers like Greg Jackson see something that these critics don’t see, as otherwise why would they be wasting their time with Andrei?”
While Khorlinsky still believes in the abilities of a man who holds wins over notable names like Vladimir Matyushenko, Tim Sylvia, Ben Rothwell and Roy Nelson, the manager reports that Arlovski is also committed to making a comeback.
“He’s dying to get back in there,” said Khorlinsky about his client, who has also lost to Antonio Silva, Fedor Emelianenko and Brett Rogers during his current losing streak. “He’s dying to get a win. He will never accept four defeats in a row and quit the sport like that. He loves it too much, he loves the competition and he loves performing for people.”
Khorlinsky did confirm that Arlovski has been training and training extensively, as he prepares to record his 16th pro win.
“He’s had a couple really tough training camps,” Khorlinsky said. “He had one with Greg Jackson and then he traveled to Russia to train with the Dagestan national wrestling team. Now he’ll be heading back to Albuquerque for his next camp.”
“He’s been training very hard,” Khorlinsky added. “His trainers have been very happy with his performance and we’ll see what happens. I know for a fact he’s very excited to fight again and eventually he wants to earn the right to fight the best and the toughest guys out there.”
And when Khorlinsky was asked if he is hoping to match Arlovski up against another established veteran like himself next, the manager responded;
“It’s really difficult to find opponents. There are not many options out there, so whoever the promoter puts in front of you, you take the fight. If you say ‘I’m not going to do this’ or ‘I’m not going to do that,’ you may not fight for two more years.”