Kirill Grishenko tests skills against Anatoly Malykhin at ONE: Bad Blood for the interim heavyweight championship. This goes down on February 11th at Singapore Indoor Stadium.
I spoke with Grishenko ahead of this prizefight and excerpts from our chat are below.
Doing this interview on his kid’s birthday
“I have all my training for the day and my wife took care of all the preparation for the birthday. It gives me more power. It pumps me up more. I hope after I fight with Anatoly, I will give that delayed gift of my victory.”
Anatoly Malykhin previously testing positive for COVID-19 and the feelings with this fight being postponed a couple of weeks from ONE: Only The Brave
“Was fully ready for every situation. In our period of where we are facing right now, everything can happen. Especially in my industry where we can be in injury or now you can face also the COVID situations. So we were ready with everything and it’s just that my training camp extended a little bit. I’m okay with that. Fully ready and I don’t expect Anatoly (Malykhin) to be in a different kind of, not prepared condition because of COVID. Pretty sure that he will go to the cage with his 100% power. So I’m ready and preparing to face a one hundred percent ready Anatoly.”
When this interim Heavyweight Championship opportunity first appeared on Grishenko’s radar
“I was so happy to receive that contract. I didn’t even think twice because it’s a great chance to have the fight with Anatoly (Malykhin). Anatoly is a great fighter and he’s a top fighter, I would say, in our division. So I was continuing to pull and train so much. I can’t wait to finish my training camp very soon and go to Singapore. Prove that I’m also on another level.”
Thoughts on the prominent stylistic tools that Anatoly Malykhin brings to the table
“Yeah, Anatoly, he’s a great fighter. I was watching his fights. I see him doing a great job with his wrestling and then in the last fight with Amir (Aliakbari), he proved that he has good striking as well. So he is very strong. I don’t count this fight as a walkthrough fight. I want first of all to show my fans, to show the people watching that this fight is a really spectacular fight. Want to show the show to the people. To improve, to increase my name in the media. So can’t wait to go to the cage.”
Grishenko vs Malykhin
Thoughts on ONE Championship recently abolishing their fight review collective in the context of Reug Reug contemplating a post-fight appeal following his controversial loss to Kirill Grishenko
“Honestly, I didn’t really think about it. It didn’t affect me too much, especially mentally. Everyone saw that when the gong was there, we both punched. He punched me on my back. I punched him around the neck. And I know that everything was on time and was by the right. But I think he didn’t want to continue because I felt like he was physically not ready to go for this third round. That’s why he decided to just give up. But in general, I don’t really care about all this. It doesn’t really affect me.”
ONE: Bad Blood
The main takeaways from his last ONE Championship clash against Dustin Joynson
“I would say big respect to Dustin, he is a real warrior. He made it to the end. I respect him so much. But with regards to the fight, first of all, the preparation didn’t go well. But despite that, there was like some minor moments that needed to be improved. As much as the takeaway is about my wrestling, it’s about my striking. But generally speaking, I’ve learned a lot and I’ve used all my learnings in my preparation this time. So I’m ready to go to the cage.”
Kirill Grishenko’s thoughts on former ONE heavyweight champion Brandon Vera picking him to win this interim title bout
“A big respect to Brandon Vera. It energizes you so much for the success in this fight. Again, I’m so motivated and I can’t wait to show a spectacular fight for my fans and whoever else is watching. So can’t wait to go to the cage.”
Parting thoughts for Kirill Grishenko
“Thanks, everyone. Thanks to everyone who is watching. Whoever worries about me or who supports me, thank you. Also thank you for my haters because without you guys I wouldn’t be more energized. So thank you for hating me more. Thanks, everyone again.”
I’ve been enamored with combat sports for as long as I can remember. I’ve hosted MMA talk shows Lights Out and Pure Fight Radio with featured guests like Jens Pulver, Roy Nelson, Miesha Tate, Mark Coleman, and more. I’ve been an MMA broadcaster for XFFC as well as BTC and have done play by play commentary on live pay per view on GFL as well as FITE TV. I’ve provided written, audio, and video content covering some of the biggest MMA promotions like Rumble in the Cage, Unified MMA, and King of the Cage. I’ve worked as a sports entertainment personality for over five years and given play-by-play or featured promotions of KSW, ONE Championship, TKO, and Invicta FC. My work can be found in the USA Today Sports affiliate MMA Torch, Cageside Press, MMA Sucka, and Liberty Multimedia.