Vladimir Matyushenko just might be one of the most underrated fighters to ever compete in mixed martial arts.  He has compiled an MMA record of 24 wins and 5 losses and is 5-3 in the UFC, with his only losses coming to Tito Ortiz at UFC 33 in a light heavyweight championship bout, Andre Arlovski at UFC 44 and most recently to Jon Jones.  All three fighters were at the top of their game when they defeated Matyushenko.  Matyushenko was also the first light heavyweight champion of the now defunct IFL.  Even with all of his accomplishments and excellent performances inside the octagon, Matyushenko is widely over looked when it comes to discussions about the best fighters in the division.  At UFC 122 Matyushenko hopes to work his way into that conversation with a victory over Alexandre Ferreira.  Matyushenko recently discussed his upcoming fight as well as his future in the sport with The MMA Corner.

 The MMA Corner: How is camp going for this fight?

Matyushenko: Good, Good.  I pretty much never stopped training after my last fight. I started training some other people for their fights and I rolled that over into my training.  I have a few days of hard training left then off to Germany.

The MMA Corner: You are coming off a loss to Jon Jones, what do you need to do to get back to your winning ways?

 Matyushenko: Well I need to win this fight.  I think I have learned from my mistakes and Jon is a great fighter. People say that he does not have experience but he is getting his experience very quick.  For me though, I know that I cannot be slow and sluggish and wait for something to happen, I have to take the fight into my hands.

The MMA Corner: Does coming off of a loss make you change the way that you prepare for a fight and does it make you timid going into your next fight?

Matyushenko:  Yeah, definitely, but again some of those things are very hard to train in a training camp.  You have to come out with experience and try some of those things in the fight and I think that it is good for me to come back pretty fast, only three months since my last fight, and just get back in there and try to redeem myself.  I think that is the best way.

The MMA Corner: What are your thoughts on your upcoming opponent Alexandre “Cacareco” Ferreira?

Matyushenko:  A lot of fights and a lot of wins and a high percentage by submission.  He is a submission expert.  He has fought a lot of big shows for submissions like Abu Dhabi and stuff like that and he has a lot of experience in submissions.  Striking-wise, I am not impressed with him but you never know, he has not fought in over a year so he could have spent that year training very hard in striking.  But so far I think his submission game is decent and I am going to try to keep him away or if it comes close I will use elbows and knees and my ground is not that bad either.

The MMA Corner: Alexandre Ferreira has 24 professional fights but none in the UFC, how are you going to be able to use your experience to your advantage?

Matyushenko: This is why I am going to keep him away, keep him away and if he comes close then take him down.  I don’t want to get into a grappling match in this fight but if it comes down to that I would press him against the cage, hold him down and keep him away and I think that is a good strategy for this fight.

The MMA Corner:  So is your main game plan to keep the fight on the feet, out strike him and hopefully get a knockout?

Matyushenko: Yeah, I think fans have been waiting for me to show my striking skills so I think this fight will be a great opportunity for me to do that.

The MMA Corner: What do you need to do in this fight to earn the victory?

Matyushenko:  Well specifically, I would like to keep all of my secrets to myself.  You never know what is going to happen in a fight, you may think he is going to do this but he does that.  That is what makes MMA such a fun sport because you never know what is going to happen. It is hard to bet on any one person.  You guys will just have to turn the TV on and watch the pay-per-view.

The MMA Corner: What will be the outcome of this fight?

Matyushenko: Well it is going to be my win, what else am I going to say, that I am going to lose?

The MMA Corner: You have fought in several main events including your last fight against Jones, now you are fighting on the unaired prelims. Does that bother you or does that give extra motivation to go out and put on a dominating performance?

Matyushenko: No, it doesn’t bother me.  It does give me extra motivation but I am thankful to the UFC for giving me this fight so quickly. I hate to walk around with losses and thinking about things.  I think that this a great opportunity for me to rebound and get back to the winning zone like you said.

The MMA Corenr: You turn 40 in January, how long do you plan on fighting?

 Matyushenko: As long as I am successful in my fights. My goal is to go as far as I can go and this is a great time to fight, the fans are there and MMA is getting more and more popular and it is really a good time for me to continue to do it.

About The Author

Josh Davis
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Josh Davis is the owner and President of The MMA Corner, LLC. He has been a fan of mixed martial arts since seeing UFC 1 in his hometown. In addition to his The MMA Corner responsibilities, Josh is the editor of Scrapp! Fight Magazine. Josh has also written for MMA Unleashed and MMA Sports magazines. Josh also manages some of Colorado's best up and coming fighters and is dedicated to the positive promotion of the sport.