Georgi Karakhanyan

Georgi Karakhanyan Quick Q&A: Guillotine Chokes, Insane Nicknames and Soccer

Tony Reid – The guillotine choke is one of your signature finishes that you have had a ton of success with over the course of your career. Can you explain your fondness for that particular choke?

Georgi Karakhanyan – “If my opponent keeps it standing it’s a gift for me and if he shoots in, its another gift for me. It doesn’t matter if you tuck your head. It doesn’t matter if you try to grapple me. I have a million ways to set up my guillotine where, at first, you think you are safe but then the next thing you know you are sleeping. I’m not desperate looking for that guillotine. I am really looking to put a beat down on my opponent. I am not scared to be on my back because Jiu Jitsu is a chess match. My Jiu Jitsu from my back is really nasty. It’s not like certain Jiu Jitsu black belts and wrestlers that get into MMA that just lay on you. I had Lance Palmer in my guard and he couldn’t do shit to me.”

TR – Your nickname is pretty straight and to the point. Who started calling you “Insane” and how did that name become the one that stuck for you?

GK – “It started with my mother. I had some crazy issues when I would get mad. I would hit my head on the wall if my parents didn’t buy me a certain toy. My mom used to call me that. When I got into MMA it was just that thing where I would give zero fucks. When I came back from my ACL surgery. I didn’t have a good camp. I fought anyway. That shows who I am. I don’t care. I am willing to do anything.”

TR – You almost passed on a career in MMA if your love of soccer and the game of soccer would have panned out differently. Can you tell us about your love of the game of futbol?

GK – “Any European kid that lived in Europe was a soccer fan. I remember I would stay up until six in the morning to watch the 1994 World Cup. I watched Italy versus Brazil. It was a life changing moment for me. It put something in my head. I wanted to turn pro. When I was a kid I didn’t have that many friends because I would always have a soccer ball with me. I played a lot. I played for a number of high level teams. I played for the national team. I tried out for a team in Mexico. I made the team it but I had to finish high school. I went back and got my high school credits and went to college and started working. My goal was to always play for Barcelona or one of the big teams.”