Thursday, August 4, 2011

Number 1 Ranked Welterweight Nick Kilian Interview

Top ranked Welterweight Nick Kilian is coming off an impressive first round win over Zac Gobel and is considered by many as the front runner to win the Amateur series title this year, and hopeful get the rematch he wants with Chris Green. While he always had the wrestling, his stand-up has improved a great deal, making him a real threat.

Q: First, can you talk about how you got started in the sport?
A: Pretty much needed something to do after college. I had a gym picked out and then got my first job out of college and went straight to the gym a month after that and started training.

Q: How long were you training when you decided to fight?
A: I trained about eight months before my first fight. Because of my wrestling background, I just had to get my striking down.

Q: A lot of times people make an effort to point out when a female fighter is also a mother. You are a single father. Does that put any obstacles in your training?
A: Yeah I am a single dad. It's the most tiring thing you can possibly do while training for a fight.Get up at 6am and watch her and come home after work and watch her for a couple hours. I try and get a workout in at 9:30 at night. Its very tiring but its worth the journey, the hard road makes it pay off in the end. She is a good girl and worth it.

Q: Your last fight you beat Zac Gobel in the first round. Was there a game plan going in?
A: No,not really. React to what they do. The idea is to impose my game plan on somebody but he clipped me and took em down, so it was time to get to work and work my submission game. I got lucky and got the reverse, so just reacting. I am pretty confident in all areas.

Q: Going into that fight, he is talented. Did you imagine you could win in the first round?
A: Yeah, the way my game is working out lately is I get in a good scramble and get in position. He's a tough guy. I thought it would be a war cause he is high energy, a wrestling war kind of thing. But I got the mount and he turned over and I got the choke.

Q: Obviously with your wrestling you are comfortable on the ground, but you seem comfortable standing to. Does that make it harder for people to prepare for you?
A: Oh yeah, definitely. When you start getting comfortable in stand-up, your wrestling game opens up a tremendous amount. You cans tart setting up takedowns with strikes, which is the best way to get a takedown instead of shooting from far away and getting caught in a choke. Striking, Jiu-Jitsu, and wrestling, all working together makes a powerful weapon.

Q: Currently you are ranked number one at welterweight, do you feel that puts a bigger target on you, people wanting to make a statement?
A: No, I have been ranked pretty much ever year since I started fighting. Unfortunately injuries have gotten in the way, but I have always been like 1,2 or 3. Doesn't matter too much. Doesn't matter who I fight, I just wanna fight and get as good as I can and go pro and be as successful as I can.

Q: Currently Chris Green is number 2. Is that a good match-up for you?
A: I want to fight him again very badly. I lost a very close decision to him last year. Nothing would please me more than to fight him in the finals. I don't care about the belt in the finals if I can fight him. I want to make a statement, no decision, no nothing in that fight.

Q: Would you rather fight him next or just fight someone and get him in the finals?
A: I want to earn my way in the finals so bring on anybody else it doesn't matter. Winning lately has giving me a confidence boost so I will fight anybody. I want to earn my spot in the finals though. But fighting him in the finals would be tremendous and I would be excited.

Q: Any idea when you want to go pro?
A: I will want to take a little time off and train for pro. Its very hard with the time constraints of watching my daughter to put in the pro time training a tremendous amount. Right now its hard to do that, but my daughter is getting older so she will be able to watch practice and going to day care soon. Once that opens up I can go harder and train for the pro level.

Q: A lot of people say their style is more suited for the pro rules. Does that statement apply to you?
A: Yeah definitely. Training at Strong Style you already train the pro rules. I am comfortable with that rule set. It makes it better for me when I have them on the ground and extra options.

Q: Are there any fighters you enjoy watching and learning from?
A: The one person I watch a lot is Nick Duell for stand-up. The guy is killer, any time I spar with him, he is a left hander also, so I try and emulate his style of striking and combos. I enjoy watching Brian Rogers also, the intensity he brings. A lot of people I train with at Strong Style I love watching, they are incredible. Chris Lozano, Stipe Miocic, those are the guys I looked up to when I started.

Q: Is there a reason you enjoy fighting fro NAAFS?
A: They are the best in this area and the Midwest. Its an honor to be in the NAAFS. As long as they will have me I will be there.

Q: Before we finish, anyone you want to thank?
A: I wanna actually thank George Comer. That loss to him last year has helped my training and gotten me so much better. I think loosing last year has made my game better. Since that loss, the training to fill my holes has been great. So I will thank him.

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