It doesn't matter if you call him a Jedi or a ninja because Luke "The Silent Assassin" Cummo comes prepared for a battle of wit and skill.
Less than a week away he will face Josh "Bring The Pain" Haynes at UFC 69 in Houston, Texas. Prepare for a war since both of these gladiators bring a never say die attitude to all of their bouts.
MMAFighting.com: What did you think when they told you that you'd be on the card at UFC 69 and fighting Josh Haynes?
Cummo: I was scheduled to fight last fall when I got injured. After I recovered, it was the first time I was in the driver's seat as to when I would fight. I also was excited to be on my first pay-per-view event in front of a large crowd and to have a reason (an opponent) to train hard again. Fight training is brutal but pushing oneself to the limit has many rewards.
MMAFighting.com: Several people think you gassed early when you fought Johnathan Goulet. Did you and what steps have you taken where that won't happen fighting Haynes?
Cummo: I was not myself physically or mentally for my last fight. Even in a weakened state, I almost put Goulet away on several occasions. The crowd at UFC 69 will see a much-improved performance. My training has been intense like always except that for this fight I had much longer notice to get ready.
MMAFighting.com: What is the most important aspect of your training?
Cummo: Every aspect of training is equally important. A fighter these days has to be good at everything, so my focus is to improve in all areas. I think that a fighter's style is dictated by his body type. For example, Matt Hughes is built like a fire hydrant and my body is similar to Anderson Silva's. If my opponent has a particular strength I will dedicate a lot of my training to countering that. When I was to fight Joe Stevenson, I trained a lot of jiu-jitsu for defense.
MMAFighting.com: On The Ultimate Fighter, you had an interesting diet. What does your diet consist of and what benefits do you feel it gives you?
Cummo: Life is a journey and I am always learning. During filming of TUF 2 my diet closely resembled a macrobiotic diet, emphasizing organic fruits, vegetables, grains, and some flesh. Since then I have discovered a wonderful lifestyle called Lifefood. This is the diet that was consistent in our evolution up until only relatively recently. It is vegetarian and uncooked and doesn't include the starchy, hybridized fruits and vegetables. Eating this way has improved all areas of my life in and out of the gym. I never have to take off due to illness and my recovery time is amazing. My increased vitality will present itself on April 7th.
MMAFighting.com: On the show you also splurged after a win. Is that the only time you go off your diet?
Cummo: Binge-eating has been a problem for me since having to follow a restrictive diet for fight training. I do love to go out to eat with friends. Since discovering Lifefood and the corresponding nutritional fasting, cravings for junk have all but disappeared. After the fight I will probably go out to eat a few times, though more so for social
MMAFighting.com: How do you see the match-up between you and Haynes going?
Cummo: My bout on April 7th will be a battle of size versus technique. True power lies in proper technique. My trainers and I have put together a sound game plan and I am prepared for the worst. Expect an exciting
MMAFighting.com: You have shown you have KO power and a great ground game. Which do you plan to win with in Houston?
Cummo: If my opponent stays standing I will use my striking, if he tries to take me down I will use Muay Thai and wrestling, if he gets me to the ground I will use jiu-jitsu. Sounds simple, huh?
MMAFighting.com: No it doesn't sound simple, but, that's why YOU are the fighter and I'm the MMA fan that only works out in the gym! I think Josh will be tough because just like you he doesn't know how to quit. I'm really looking forward to watching both of you guys fight.
Cummo: I expect a fierce battle on April 7.
MMAFighting.com: I've heard some people say you have good skills and great stamina but can't finish a fight without going to a decision. What would you say to those people?
Cummo: First I would say thank you for the compliments. I have fought some tough opponents. I always fight my hardest and the rest just happens.
MMAFighting.com: What do you think Matt Serra's chances are against GSP?
Cummo: All fighters have an equal chance to win any fight. So Matt Serra has the same chance as GSP: 50 %. Matt is going to impress a lot of people.
MMAFighting.com: Do you have any predictions for the other fights that night?
Cummo: I predict that the Serra-Longo Competition Team will go undefeated at UFC 69.
MMAFighting.com: Reading your website I see where you talk about having clients. What jobs do you have other than fighting?
Cummo: I teach group classes and private lessons at Ray Longo's International Martial Arts Academy.
MMAFighting.com: Is there anybody specific that you want to fight?
MMAFighting.com: What do you think about the other seasons of The Ultimate Fighter?
Cummo: The show is usually on too late at night for me to watch. This coming season 5 will probably be the best one yet. I love the idea of the tournament format. There is a certain old school mystique kind of feel to it.
MMAFighting.com: Any thoughts of changing weight classes down the road?
Cummo: I have had thoughts and people asking me about moving down to the lightweight class because I walk around at 175 pounds. That seems like a lot of water-weight to cut so I will probably stay at welterweight.
MMAFighting.com: What do you consider your strengths?
Cummo: My strengths are my intelligence and my cardio.
MMAFighting.com: What do you consider your weaknesses?
Cummo: I'd rather not reveal my weaknesses to future opponents.
MMAFighting.com: I've talked with you through your forum at www.lukecummo.com . Do you interact with fans on any other forums?
Cummo: Anyone who has any questions for me about MMA, Lifefood, or just wants to shoot the sh!t can join the forums at LukeCummo.com. I am on there every day. I also sometimes check out the UG and OG on MMA.tv.
MMAFighting.com: Are there any sponsors you want to thank?
Cummo: My wonderful sponsors are Michael Jocson of JocsonHealth.com, my CHEK practitioner, Jubb's Longevity, NHBGear.com, and videogamecentral.com. I'd also like to thank my trainers: Ray Longo, Matt & Nick Serra, Michael Jocson, Dr. Sherry Wulkan, and John Danaher. Thank you to all my training brothers and sisters and anyone who has given me a ride to or from practice, especially my Dad and Mom. Most importantly, I get the most support from my wonderful wife Lara.
MMAFighting.com: Is there anything else you would like to add or say to your fans?
Cummo: I would like to let everyone know how to take personal responsibility for the genesis of peace in this world; Its called "voting with your dollar". Lifefood is the best diet for our health and the health of the planet. Come to LukeCummo.com and when I get back from Texas and I will be posting more info.