Japan MMA Floundering, Maximo Blanco Excited to Make Big Splash in U.S. Debut at Strikeforce


Maximo Blanco

Former Pancrase lightweight champion and Sengoku star Maximo Blanco (8-2-1) is a ferocious young talent looking to move his career forward in America.

The lightweight spent much of his time in Japan, and due to his aggressive fighting style fans and pundits have declared Blanco a smaller version of a prime Wanderlei Silva. His record only serves to back that up with seven of his eight victories coming by way of stoppage.

Blanco’s welcoming party to America has come at the hands of none other than the world-famed Greg Jackson.  When Jackson heard that the Venezuelan wanted to move here, UFC lightweight Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone offered the fighter a place to stay.

“I really appreciate staying here and the fact I get to train at my own pace, it’s great,” Blanco told MMAWeekly.com.

The move to America was an easy choice for Blanco as his former employer, Sengoku, closed their offices and went out of business.  But while in Japan, the 27-year-old was treated very well. Not only was he paid to fight, he was given a monthly salary in addition to having everything from food, shelter, and training covered.

“Yeah, I was on a monthly salary.  They paid for the monthly salary, room and board, and everything else.

“The fact is Sengoku folded and they weren’t doing any shows anymore and I told them my desire to come to America.  Basically, they pushed my back to get out to America.”

On Sept. 10, the former King of Pancrase lightweight champion will make his debut on U.S. soil when he meets former Strikeforce lightweight champion Josh “The Punk” Thomson. The two square off as part of the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix Semi-Finals event in Cincinnati.

While things were stagnating in Japan, Blanco is excited for the opportunity to ply his trade in America.

“I think that the one difference in Japan is that when you win the fight, that nothing really changes.  Josh Thomson is a very, very good fighter, which means this is a good, good opportunity for me.  So I would like to win this fight and capitalize on this chance.”

While the 27-year-old was in Japan, he trained under the legendary Yoshida Dojo, and while he learned a lot, he feels that the training is a lot better here.  But what excites Blanco the most is the popularity explosion mixed martial arts has enjoyed. The Venezuelan is glad to have made the choice to come over.

“The Yoshida Dojo, they do a lot of various training menus, so it was good in that sense.  But compared to America, where I am right now, I get to train and spar with the top fighters.  So in that sense, it’s more fun here.

“It’s the best, there are so many interesting people in this country.  From what I see, in mixed martial arts and how heated the fans are, I believe that America is the best.”

Follow Andrew Gladstone at @gladstone1 on Twitter.
For more UFC News and UFC Rumors, follow MMAWeekly.com on Twitter and Facebook.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

  • 26 days ago
  • 5 views

Consider it a postponement. Burgeoning women's MMA talent Holly Holm was supposed to meet Raquel Pennington in her UFC debut earlier this month. That didn't happen when Holm injured her neck. But tha read news >>

  • 11 days ago
  • 0 views

Following an interesting start to his MMA career, Rudy Morales is more than ready to make a splash in his World Series of Fighting debut on Saturday. read news >>

  • 7 days ago
  • 4 views

Gabi Garcia will finally make her MMA debut. A nine-time jiu-jitsu world champion and ADCC winner, Garcia has signed a deal with Brazilian MMA promotion Jungle Fight and is set to compete for the fir read news >>

  • 26 days ago
  • 7 views

Anthony Christodoulou will make his Octagon debut at UFC on Fox 14 when he squares off against Mairbek Taisumov. read news >>

  • 25 days ago
  • 0 views

One of the biggest questions regarding the MMA career of Phil Brooks, better known by his ring name of CM Punk, was what gym he would join ahead of his UFC debut. Well, we have the answer. According read news >>

  • 25 days ago
  • 4 views

Make your pick for the best MMA submission of 2014 in Bloody Elbow's Year-End Awards. It seems that Mookie Alexander is too busy using his Barry White-like voice to seduce some ladies over on JDate a read news >>

  • 24 days ago
  • 1 views

Fighters and personalities from the MMA community give their New year's resolutions. Welcome to 2015. In these first hours of the first day of the New Year, Bloody Elbow brings you its 3rd annual Fig read news >>

  • 22 days ago
  • 2 views

UFC 182 offers plenty of excellent MMA action, but the big attraction on the main fight card will be the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship showdown between Jon "Bones" Jones and challenger Daniel Co read news >>

  • 20 days ago
  • 24 views

Make your pick for the worst judge's decision of 2014 in Bloody Elbow's Year-End Awards. It seems that Mookie is too busy being a tiny centerfielder for the Boston Red Sox and won't be able to handle read news >>