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Shinya Aoki Talks Strikeforce Debut, Gilbert Melendez, MMA in Japan

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Japanese magazine GONG has the Q&A with DREAM's lightweight champ, set to met Strikeforce lightweight champ Gilbert Melendez on April 17.

HT: Head Kick Legend and gryphonjapan for the translation.

Q:You finally fight in Strikeforce (SF).what is reaction from friends about this news?
AOKI "it is very very good,everyone is excited"

Q:What do your sparring partners and other fighters say?
"they are ordinary is my business"

Q:you said in 2009 NY eve,"I want to do many fight in 2010"but interval is about 4months..
"This(fight in SF) is big negotiation become tough,April fight is good timing,I think"

Q:in 2009 NY eve, Did you expect that your next fight is n USA
"I do not feel difference between Japan fight and USA fight.This is my I clear my mission"

Q:you have already faced most of all DREAM lightclass top have something to do with this SF coming?
"it is true that I need new motivation. actually,next card make my heart big.My basic position is not change,but field becomes wide" I start from Zero in SF.So I feel"OK,let's roll!!"I did my best at DREAM in 2years.I reset it,and see new something" 

Q:You have been to tried grappling match in foreign country.Did you feel difference between home and away?
"Real deal have to do 100% performance,anytime,anywhere, against anyone! If this fighter can not become 100%,it means he is not real deal " Q:you looked at SF 2009 Fedor debut event.what did you feel?
"Excellent event.but event detail is small topic,all MMA event consist of FIGHTS"

Q:You always think of fight technique in cage,This is first show "AOKI in Cage"
"I am interested in it too.and,I am tired of this question,haha.MMA media asked me it in 3years.(LOL)"

Q:Ok,next question,about Gilbert Melendez(GM).In PRIDE,AOKIvsGM is matchmaked,but GM's injury make it cancel....You wanted to fight him?
"yes,GM is worldwide fighter,so I saw him from long ago.GM and Josh Thomson is tough guy of toughs many fans want to compare to UFC.but in MMA,all debate is nonsense without actual PRIDE tournament...

Q:you said "GM's fight make change our training".in concrete technique...
"OK....gentleman....mmm...maybe your magazine(GONG KAKUTOUGI)staff like skill talk.but,I am not interested in it at least this fight!.your magazine want to tal about =AOKI's hidden skill in cage=etc....but,I want to talk about other story....this is too dramatic story.this become my motivation...Japanese TOP come to USA.this is technical is made by my long is same as my old it dose not need to talk."

"The most important point is "IF AOKI LOSE,JAPAN IS THE END".this match is nonsense if you talk about technique. I taped GM out,that is all"

Q:oh,this dramatic story is made by himself?
"I lose,JAPAN is certain.when I lose,JAPAN become colony of USA MMAnation.some mania say that USA's MMA is the best!! but if japan MMA become colony,NNA magazine is the end too.I do not worship ,this is big vs HIROTA Mizuto(his 2009 NYeve fight) "

Q:do you feel pressure?
"yes,this is high risk,high return.I get this"return".and I give DREAM it.I am son of DREAM.So in 2009 NYeve fight,I think,"OK,I KILL YOU"!! the relation DREAM staff and me is real.they know my mind in this fight,and japan LIGHT weightclass is global standard.this is same level of USA lightclass,and AOKI Shinya is icon of it.So this fight become megamatch " 

Q:3.31 UFN,GOMI"fireball"Takanori will debut in UFC (this interview was before UFN).UNO Caol also fight there.they are Japanese top contender too.but you are special,You think so?
"Yes,To say the truth I am far from them. They are not top of Japan.But I prove myself by Fight in Japan.and Champion of DREAM.they are relaxed than me.My risk is much bigger than them"

Q:If you lose the game.USA fighters mock Japanese MMA...?
"maybe.and it is natural.So I win!! no one can not deny DREAM and my fightlife" 

Q:Does this big pressure prevent you from doing best move?
"If pressure destroy me,I am not called as fighter.I can bet all my is warrior."

Q:I remember MIKU(Japan women topfighter,but she retire in April).she can not keep motivation.but you are...
"MIKU is serious to MMA.So she decide retirement.I understand her 50%...but other 50%,"She can retire When She want".I am not.I have responsibility to japan all MMA.So I can not stop fight.If motivation is lost,I make it by myself....This is not disrespect to MIKU." 

Q:but She is not all time professional fighter.
"Yes,many many fighters do professional fight and other job....They have two ability.But I have only fight ability.only it!! so I never stop this business"

Q:some professional fighter says""Professional" means make audience excited"
"it is not right.because such fighters escape from"Win ore lose"They are comfortable and relaxed" 

Q:what will be fighting business in future?
"I guess,fighter's life will become development of sports means bigname keep their status in long time,so young power can not become star easily"

Q:it means downsizing of MMA market?
"Yes,but is is not bad,when gate become narrow,only high quality fighters lives there.of course I will be alive in such world....haha, but it is irony, joke.big Market make high level of this sport.So.i said=IF AOKI LOSE A GAME,JAPAN MMA IS THE END!!" 

Q:Thanks I can know your motivation and risk.
"No problem,I am really serious for MMA.So I do not talk about technique now,this fight is not technique but instinct and heart!! One tough guy stand,other tough guy down.Everyone,look at this scene!!! "