‘A challenge I wanted’ – Buchecha excited to test MMA game against wrestler Kirill Grishenko
Marcus “Buchecha” Almeida has already defeated dangerous heavyweights in his budding MMA career, but he will face a whole new threat in his next outing.
This Friday, August 26, the 17-time BJJ World Champion will take on elite wrestler Kirill Grishenko on ONE’s main card on Prime Video I: Moraes vs Johnson II, which will air live from Singapore in primetime at the United States.
The legendary grappler has handled different styles in each of his fights to date, but he knows the former ONE Interim Heavyweight world title challenger will be a different beast.
“[Grishenko] comes from struggle. I come from jiu-jitsu. I am a fighter. I am motivated by challenges, and that is something that motivates me.
“I have already faced an attacker. I fought another [BJJ] black belt, but he’s going to be the first wrestler, so it’s going to be an interesting fight. It’s a challenge I wanted. I wanted to face a guy who defends takedowns well to test me, so I think that will be pretty cool.
Almeida has been absolutely dominant since his MMA debut last year, posting three straight first-round results in ONE Championship.
He first submitted Anderson “Braddock” Silva and Kang Ji Won before stopping Simon Carson with the ground and the pound in his last outing last June.
All of these wins are down to ‘Buchecha’s ability to get things done, and he expects Grishenko to do everything possible to avoid the same fate.
The Brazilian said:
“He will want to continue the fight standing up and avoid my jiu-jitsu. But it’s MMA, it’s not a wrestling match, so we’ll both be ready for anything.”
Buchecha confident after ‘perfect’ fight camp at ATT
Marcus “Buchecha” Almeida has worked alongside elite coaches and sparring partners in all areas of mixed martial arts to ensure he can become a complete competitor.
Kirill Grishenko will give ONE a tough test on Prime Video 1, but the Brazilian grappling icon feels his work with American Top Team in Florida has prepared him to take on the Belarusian in all ranges.
“The training was perfect. I will arrive very well prepared for the fight. Katel Kubis helped me [with Muay Thai] since the day I arrived at ATT. Boxing training I do with Ivan Oliveira, who is a big name in Brazilian boxing.
“I train wrestling with Steve Mocco. I’m not afraid to fight wrestlers because I train with one of the biggest wrestling legends in the United States. He gives me a lot of confidence, my wrestling has evolved a lot since I arrived at ATT.
“[But] if I can’t fight on the ground, it’s not a problem because I’m used to training with the best attackers. I feel very comfortable in all aspects of the fight.
Still, the margins of error are very small at the highest level of heavyweight MMA.
With that in mind, ‘Buchecha’ knows he has to be on point every second of Friday’s game or he will risk his first defeat.
But while his opponent certainly has great knockout power, the 32-year-old Brazilian remains confident and eager to continue his impressive streak of stoppage wins.
“Which makes [Grishenko] dangerous is that he is a heavyweight and has a 4 ounce glove in his hand. But I’m also a heavyweight and I have the same glove in my hand. And that’s all. At heavyweight, one hit can decide the fight, so neither he nor I can go wrong.
“I think it’s going to be a fight where whoever has the best strategy and follows the plan will do well. In a perfect world, I win with a first-round finish, like all my fights so far. That’s the point.