Melvin Manhoef went straight from his knockout win over Kazuo Misaki at Dynamite 2009 to a press conference at which he said he could fight less than a month from now, against Robbie Lawler at Strikeforce Miami on January 30.
Manhoef typically trains at Mike's Gym in Amsterdam, which burned down recently, but he said he'll be able to find a place to train. And for Manhoef, who had five kickboxing matches and two MMA fights in 2009, a rest period of 30 days is plenty.
"If the fight's going to happen I'm going to prepare myself good," Manhoef said. "My trainer and team will find something to prepare for the fight."
Manhoef indicated that he doesn't know a lot about Lawler, but he noted that the two of them are both primarily stand-up fighters who don't like going to the ground. Manhoef is 23-2 in MMA fights decided by knockout or technical knockout, but 0-4 in fights decided by decision. Lawler is 13-1 in fights decided by (T)KO and 1-4 in fights decided by submission.
"I hear he's a banger and not a grappler, so maybe I won't have to go to the ground, and we can do what we do best," Manhoef said. "I hope so."
Manhoef has more than 60 professional fights on his record, between MMA and kickboxing, but he's only fought in the United States once -- a loss to Dong Sik Yoon at Dynamite USA in Los Angeles in 2007. I think American fans will love Manhoef's fighting style if they get to see him, and I'd love to see him fight Lawler this month.