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Tuesday, Sep 04, 2001

Quick Interviews With

Quick Interviews with
BJ Penn & Gil Castillo
At IFC Warrior’s Challenge XV
By Roberto Martinez

BJ Penn running to the Octagon at UFC 32
BJ Penn was at IFC XV this past weekend to support Paul Buentello who trained for his fight at the American Kickboxing Academy. BJ was kind enough to answer a few quick questions.

FCF:   How many more fights before you get a title shot?

BJP:   Hopefully 1 more fight and we’re looking to face the winner of the Pulver-Hallman fight. I think I’m going to fight Uno first and after that the winner of me and Uno fights the Pulver-Hallman winner. Nothing’s guaranteed though.

FCF:   Where are you training now?

BJP:   I’m training up at American Kickboxing Academy with Javier Mendez and my brothers at Legends.

FCF:   What happened with you and John Lewis?

BJP:   I felt I wanted to take control of my own career. I wanted to do my own thing. That’s pretty much it.


Gil Castillo at IFC WC 15
Gil Castillo was on hand at the IFC Warrior’s Challenge XV on Friday to support four local guys as well as receive his IFC Welterweight belt. Gil is set to face Dave Menne at UFC 33 in Las Vegas on September 28th. He took some time out and answered a few questions I had.

FCF:   Where do you train?
GC:     Cesar Gracie’s. I’ve been training jiu-jitsu for about 6 years now. I wrestled for a long time before that. I’m also boxing.

FCF:   What is your opinion of Dave Menne?

GC:     Tough guy. I didn’t know too much about him. I did know he was ranked pretty high. He’s a tough guy. He bangs and he doesn’t back down.

FCF:   Many people have never heard of you and don’t feel you deserve a title shot in the UFC. What do you say to that?

GC:     I have a very good answer to that. I’m 16-0 and I own 3 titles right now. A lot of guys they put in the UFC are there for their first fight or second fight. My question is why? Why don’t they put someone that’s done no-holds-barred for a while? Not some guy that won a wrestling tournament somewhere or a boxing tournament somewhere. It’s a whole different game. It’s like comparing dancing to judo. That’s why you find boxers getting smoked in there and wrestlers getting smoked too. You have to have an all-around game.

FCF:   Did you sign a contract with the UFC?

GC:     We have a 3-fight deal. Depending on what happens in this fight here will dictate whether I need to drop down to 170 [lbs.] again, because that’s my natural weight.

FCF:   How did your guys do tonight?

GC:     We had four guys fighting. We went 2-2. That was our guy in the main event. He lost on a cut, which could happen to anybody, but then again you have to give kudos to his guy for knowing how to cut you. That’s a skill in itself. The knees and elbows will tell ya.

FCF:   What can fans expect come September 28th?

GC:     I just heard that they’re putting our fight first. They have 3 title fights and title fights as you know are five 5-minute rounds. So to schedule their pay-per-view time they want to see what the first title fight will do. Is it going to be 1 round or is it going to be 5 rounds? So they’re putting us first before even the preliminary fights so they can see what preliminary fights they can fit in because they have to put ours, the title fights, on pay-per-view. I’m going in there first and I’m expecting this thing to go the distance. I’m fully conditioned for this thing. I just fought 25 minutes in my last fight and he is going to be a bit bigger than me so it will tire me out a bit more, but I think I know how to deal with it. He’s tough to submit, so I’m not going to try something other people have failed at. I’m going to be ready to outpoint this guy.

FCF:   Anything else you’d like to say?

GC:     Don’t count me out at all. You guys will be looking at one of the best fights of the night.

From John Petrilli (RITC Writer/Statistician):

RITC XXX – "Live and Barely Legal"
Date: Wednesday September 26, 2001
Time: Doors Open: 6:00 PM, Fight Time: 8:00 PM
Location: Celebrity Theatre, Phoenix, Arizona
Ringside Tickets: $20
General Admission: $15

Rage in the Cage is heating up again!! Todd Medina’s Freestyle Fight Team will once again travel from California to compete in RITC. Team Reno, from Nevada, will also be coming to town to challenge Team BRAUSA (Edwin Dewees, Farrell Frisby, Shawn Upshur, James Upshur, Ryan Roath, Mike Berardi) and the rest of Arizona’s finest combat fighters. The undercard will also feature some Toughman bouts.

Super Heavyweight Main Event:
Jimmy Ambriz (6’2", 307 lbs) Medina Freestyle Fight Team
Joe Leyva (6’5", 270 lbs) Formerly trained by Megaton Diaz

Rage in the Cage is returning after a 3-month absence for its 7th show of the year. Reduced admission prices are in effect for RITC XXX. Don’t miss this event !!

Fight Card subject to change.

Tickets for RITC available at the Celebrity Theatre Box Office (602-267-1600) or at Ticketmaster (480-784-4444). For additional information, please call 480-446-8127 or visit www.rageinthecage.com

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posted by Full Contact Fighter @ 8:00 pm
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