Manvel “The Pitbull” Gamburyan is set to enter into the biggest and toughest fight of his life as he is taking on Brazilian dynamo Jose Aldo for his WEC featherweight strap this Thursday evening at WEC 51. Gamburyan spoke with MMAWeekly.com about the fight and about his position as a heavy underdog to the champion.
“I’m always the little guy and I’m always the underdog,” Gamburyan said. “I’ve been enjoying it lately, being a big underdog. So do my fans.”
Gamburyan earned his title shot with a first round starching of former champion Mike Thomas Brown at WEC 48 this past April; another bout where the Armenian judo player was considered the underdog.
“I don’t care. I can be a 10-to-1 underdog,” he said. “Look what happened against Mike Brown.”
Aldo has risen to prominence in the featherweight division on the strength of a 17-1 record and a flashy, brutal and dynamic fighting style that is reminiscent of his Black House teammate Anderson “The Spider” Silva. Gamburyan has an interesting take on the Aldo-Silva comparisons and said that, if Aldo is Silva, then his Russian MMA great Fedor Emelianenko.
“If they’re comparing him to Anderson Silva, they should compare me with Fedor,” he said, repeating the statement for those in any state of disbelief. “If he’s Anderson Silva, most definitely, I’m Fedor.”
Aldo is not only widely considered to be the best featherweight fighter in the sport, he is included on many pundits’ top five pound-for-pound lists. No matter, says Gamburyan; he knows what Aldo is about and is prepared to topple the Nova Uniao BJJ black belt this Thursday night.
“I don’t see any trouble,” Gamburyan said of Aldo. “I know what he’s going to do. He’s going to throw a lot of knees, kicks, leg kicks, high kicks, low kicks. I know exactly his game plan.”
As for what he plans to do come Thursday night, Gamburyan said his plan is simple: capture the 145lb. belt.
“I got one plan only, just get that belt. That’s it,” he said.
WEC 51: Aldo vs. Gamburyan goes down this Thursday night from the 1stBank Center in Broomfield, Colorado and will air live on the Versus network.