On 14th of April, the Ericsson Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden will be the proving ground for some top European ranked fighters when the UFC opens their gate once again. We talked to one of Norways finest mma fighters in Simeon Thoresen about his upcoming UFC debut against home crowd favorite Besam Yousef. We also spoke with the charismatic welterweight about his coach, Pride veteran Joachim Hansen, the MMA scene in Norway and his life outside the cage.
Groundandpound.de: You will face sweden fighter Besam Yousef on the 14th of April. What do you know about your opponent, so far?
Simeon Thoresen: I know he is a good all-round fighter and will be hungry to mark his UFC debut with a win, but so am I.
You have won almost all of your fights via submission. That's quite an achievement for a former Karate and Muay Thai fighter.
No, i like both. So, I like the stand-up game also. But the fights often end up on the ground.
The fight will take place in Stockholm, Sweden. Is it very difficult to fight infront of Yousef's home crowd?
No, I have fought many times in my opponent's home country. It doesn't bother me at all.
How did you get your Nickname: The Grin?
My old coach gave it to me cause I was always smiling and in a such good mood at training.
Please, tell us more about the MMA sport in Norway.
Since it is forbidden to fight in Norway, it's really hard getting sponsors. I have a few from Norway for the UFC debut though. I've also had a lot of interest from a lot of companies in the USA. There are a lot of talented fighters from Norway, and I look forward to see more of them in the UFC in the future.
One of your coaches, Joachim Hansen described you as “a guy with amazing talent, who I truly believe will be a champion in the future”. Please give us a little inside look, what it means, to train with Joachim Hansen.
Joachim is a great friend and fighter. I've been training with him for years and he really is a down to earth guy with alot of experience. I have been lucky to have the opportunity to train with him.
Describe yourself as a fighter?
I like to see myself as a pretty all-round fighter.
If you are not training, what do you do?
I enjoy books, movies, dining out, hanging out with my friends and travel when I can. I don't like going to clubs and drink in moderation.
Do you have a message for your fans?
Thanks for all your support! It means the world to me!
At least, give us your prediction for the fight.
(Laughing) I will leave that to you guys!