Bellator 166: Emmanuel Sanchez says MMA judges should ‘get kicked once’

Featherweight action fighter Emmanuel Sanchez has amassed a 5-2 Bellator record heading into his 8th promotional match in just over 2 years. Before marching…

By: Eddie Mercado | 7 years ago
Bellator 166: Emmanuel Sanchez says MMA judges should ‘get kicked once’
Bloody Elbow 2.0 | Anton Tabuena

Featherweight action fighter Emmanuel Sanchez has amassed a 5-2 Bellator record heading into his 8th promotional match in just over 2 years. Before marching into battle at Bellator 166 on December 2, Emmanuel Sanchez spoke with Bloody Elbow about his journey to the MMA main stage, MMA judging, and his thoughts on his opponent, AJ McKee.

Training at Roufusport:

“The list of names, man, it never goes down. We got guys, everyday, coming from different academies, or Tyron Woodley coming in from ATT. So many different guys at the highest level, or working their way up to get to the highest level, and they know that this is the place to be. It’s nice because we welcome anyone with open arms and it’s really great getting to work with so many different people. Just my time here alone, I got to spar with Darren Elkins, Sam Stout, and Yves Edwards. These are guys I grew up watching, you know what I mean? They’ve been doing this when I was still a kid in school and never even dreamed of fighting, and I get to spar with these guys. It’s just nuts.”

3-0 in Oklahoma:

“I’m about to go 3-0 in Oklahoma. I actually made my [Bellator] debut in Oklahoma so it’s a special place to me… When I made my debut, Eduardo Dantas was fighting Joe Warren, and now I’m fighting again and Eduardo Dantas is fighting Joe Warren. At that time, I was on the undercard and now I’m the co-main event, so you can’t write a better story for Oklahoma and everything that I worked so hard for. This is very special for me.”

Winning by losing to Pat Curran:

“The only thing that was different, or weird, or awkward was that three weeks prior to that fight, he was getting ready to fight someone else and I came in on short notice, was that I was just training with him. I was literally just training with him. He came up to train with us and I feel like out of all the guys he sparred with here at our academy, I sparred with him the most. We were all kind of on the same terms thinking, we are so far apart from each other that we probably wouldn’t fight each other until later down the road. Sure enough, we fight each other 3 weeks down the road…

…I believe I won more than I actually lost. I won the fans. I won the credit of my employers in Bellator, saying thank you for taking the fight, thank you for making weight. I feel like I put on a an exciting fight and I was still going for the finish.”

All Henry Corralles wants for Christmas:

“I just remember after the fight, he just told me, he’s like, because he left his mouthpiece in too, and he’s like, ‘hey, you knocked my front teeth out. Good fight.’ I’m like, ‘What?’ He didn’t want pull out the mouthpiece and have the teeth fall out, but ‘yeah, you knocked my teeth out.’ I was like, ‘No way.’ I didn’t know what strike maybe could have done it, I just knew the guy was tough as nails. This guy’s like a billygoat… Man, balls of steel.”

4 straight Split Decisions:

“In my mind, these judges are so stupid, I think, because I’m attempting to finish the fight. I’m doing everything to finish the fight. I’m going for takedowns; I’m going for strikes. I’m going every way possible to try and finish the fight and it’s a split decision?”

Kick the Judges:

“I think all judges need to get kicked once. They say, ‘Oh low kicks don’t win fights.’ Well, let me kick you once and you tell me if that’s winning a fight. Low kicks break legs. Low kicks hurt people. Low kicks stop people from walking the next day. You should have seen Daniel Weichel in the hotel lobby and at the airport. He was limping, busted up and couldn’t move. So, you tell me who won the fight when I didn’t have a scratch on me.”

Breaking the Cycle:

“Just throw more. That’s what my coaches have told me, too. They ask me, ‘Have you ever been tired after a fight?’ I said, ‘No, I’ve been maybe frustrated, maybe got hit more than I liked, or head-butted, but no I’ve never really been tired…

…My coaches say that, ‘you throw a lot, you need to throw more. You need to come forward more and never stop with the pressure. You’re a human lawn mower. Your opponents ass is grass; you need to mow it.’”

King Cardio:

“I see it in training all the time, with my own teammates. Not down talking them, but they might have been tagging me, or they may have taken me down, or might have gotten something on me, yet I still get right back up and I’m right back on them. I can already see that, alright they’re going backwards and I’m going forward. I’m winning. I can tell that they’re tired so now it’s time for me to impose my will and break them. Now I just need to do that more in my fights.”

Is AJ McKee ready for a step up in competition?

“No, because I’m looking to go out and take him out in the first round. I got more first round finishes than he has fights, so I don’t think he’s ready. I don’t think he knows what’s coming. I think he can believe his own hype and everyone who’s in his ear, telling him he’s the greatest, and he can do this, and he’s that. I think it’s just a load of crock but it is what it is. Whatever, think what you want, feel what you want, train the way you want, but none of those guys have a win in Bellator. None of his opponents that he’s had, have a win in Bellator.”

“I see a guy who is long, young, athletic, and has wrestling experience, and his father was a fighter. Other than that, his level of opponents, too. If his level of opponents didn’t know what to do with someone who can spin, can jump, and this… Do you know who I train with? I train with Anthony Pettis, I train with Sergio Pettis, I train with Tyron Woodley, I train with Ben Askren, I train with CM Punk. You know what I mean. Yeah, you can say what you want about CM Punk, but I train with CM Punk. No one can get in my head. I train with some of the best guys in the world, at the highest level. Sage Northcutt was just here. So, it’s going to be nothing I’ve never seen, nothing I’ve never had, but I know I’m going to bring something he’s never seen and something he’s never had.”

Message for McKee:

“Let’s state the facts, you’ve never really been in a fight, and I have. I know what it’s like to been pressured, been pushed, been this. You can sound confident, I’m not even going to say cocky. You can sound confident all you want by saying, ‘Oh, I’ve done this to this guy, that guy, this guy.’ Well, that’s because none of those guys really did anything to you. What’s going to happen when someone is right there and meets you in the middle?”

Watch Emmanuel Sanchez take on AJ McKee at Bellator 166 on December 2, 2016. Stay tuned to Bloody Elbow for all of your Bellator event coverage including interviews, play-by-play, highlights and more!

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Eddie Mercado
Eddie Mercado

Eddie Mercado is a writer and content creator for Bloody Elbow, and has covered combat sports since 2015. Eddie covers everything from betting odds and live events, to fighter interviews and co-hosting the 6th Round post-fight show and the 6th Round Retro. He retired at 1-0 in professional MMA, competed in one Muay Thai match in Thailand, and is currently a purple belt in Jiu-Jitsu under the great Diego Bispo.

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