By Zach Arnold | January 19, 2011
“I’m always motivated to improve and be a better fighter. I believe that people put a big focus on things like having the belt. I don’t believe that having the belt really determines the type of fighter and type of person that you are. I try to set an example for the young fighters that are coming up and leave a legacy of what I’ve been able to do in this sport.
“I’m not concerned about who my next opponent is. He’s a dangerous opponent just like the rest.
“It’s every athlete’s dream to end his career as a champion, just like it is mine. However, in this sport, it is very difficult. After the Chael (Sonnen) fight, people think I’m human again and that anything can happen. I could be knocked out. I could be submitted. For me, every time I go out there, it’s about more than just winning the fight. It’s about sending a positive message and leaving a message behind of what I was able to do in there.
I figured we’d start out with some comments from Anderson Silva. Now, onto what Shawn Tompkins said to Mauro Ranallo on The Fight Show (January 18th edition):
MAURO RANALLO: “What about Vitor Belfort? I know that you were helping him prepare for his fight against Anderson Silva. Now, he’s at Xtreme Couture, your former home base, talk of him recruiting Mike Tyson to help him prepare for Anderson Silva. What is your relationship with Belfort and why won’t you be in his corner?”
SHAWN TOMPKINS: “Well, you know, Vitor has done this before. Vitor sometimes, he gets a little clouded in his head. It’s not that he brought in Mike Tyson or anything like that. Vitor just wanders, you know, and he goes where, you know, what’s happening, what’s famous, what’s popular and he’ll go over there and Mike Tyson isn’t teaching him anything. Neither is the other eight gyms that he’s training at. Just because he’s over at Couture’s and not with me doesn’t mean he’s with Couture’s. Vitor isn’t loyal to anybody. We’ve seen it before.”
MAURO RANALLO: “I do sense some acrimony. Are you then not on good terms with Vitor right now?”
SHAWN TOMPKINS: “I hope for the best for him, but you know for a guy who told me about respect, loyalty, and God and all this stuff for so many years, he sure did prove the opposite. So, we’ll see. Best of luck to him. Best of luck to Anderson, as well.”