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The Quotable Mr. Koscheck

A polarizing figure to mixed martial arts fans, Josh Koscheck has embraced his dual role as a fan favorite and the man fans love to hate, and in the lead up to his UFC 124 main event against Georges St-Pierre, you will surely hear some incendiary comments coming from the mouth of the Ultimate Fighter season 12 coach and number one welterweight contender. Here’s just a sample of Kos’ quotables from over the course of his UFC career.

On tapping out (2006)
“Hell, I’m never gonna tap. That’s just saying, ‘no mas, you’re too good today’. I got a big heart and I think there’s always a chance that I can get out of it. There’s a certain point where some people may have to tap, but I haven’t been in that position yet. As of right now, I’m not tapping.”

On getting choked out by Drew Fickett (2006)
“That’s Ultimate Fighting, and I’ve seen it happen before, where people are dominating and they get submitted. It’s part of the sport and I think about that all the time. What the hell was I thinking shooting in there? There are always what ifs, but it happened, that’s the nature of the sport, I deal with it and move on.”

On finishing fights (2007)
“With those bonuses and things like that that the UFC gives as extra incentives, when you’ve got somebody hurt, it doesn’t matter who it is, you’re trying to finish the fight. And as a fighter, if you have somebody hurt, the fighting instinct definitely kicks in, no matter who it is, and you’ve got to do whatever you need to to finish the fight. For example, if you look at my past fight with Drew Fickett, I probably had plenty of chances to end that fight early. If I would have known more about fighting or been more aggressive at certain points, then I could have probably finished that fight. So you’ve got to finish the fight, because bad things can happen the longer the fight goes on because it is the UFC, and it’s crazy.”

Before his first fight with Georges St-Pierre (2007)
“I think Georges St-Pierre is a well-rounded fighter, a good fighter, but I think he has one area that he’s very weak in and that’s his mind. I think that he’s mentally not as strong as his skills are. That’s the area I’m gonna work on and hopefully exploit in this fight, and hopefully I’ll come out with a victory.”

More thoughts on GSP (2007)
“If you look at the past history of Georges St-Pierre, he said the reason he lost against Matt Hughes was because he was fighting his idol. You don’t come out and say that. And after the loss he had against Matt Serra, he came out and said he didn’t train, and then came back and said he did train hard and he made a mistake, that type of thing. From the outside looking in, you would obviously think something’s wrong with this kid if he’s making up those kinds of stories and that type of thing. But now, I’m glad it’s out because it’s just an advantage for me because I’m mentally tough. I come from a wrestling background so the mental toughness aspect is there, so it’s just a matter of getting my skills to the level that I need to to compete with those guys.”

On toughness (2007)
“One reason why I’m tough is Edinboro wrestling. Coach Flynn, I had him fly out a couple of weeks ago, he trained me for a week, and it’s just a lot different workout than you’re used to. It’s pushing your body, but most of all, it’s pushing your mind. He had me pushing a car for a mile after I did 40 minutes of sprints, just to test me mentally and to see if I wanted to win this fight or not. The next day he had me doing a wheelbarrow with 300 pounds and he had me wheel it for 28 straight minutes, running. So it’s much more of a mental game for me, and coming from a wrestling background, wrestlers are used to that. We’re used to the grind, used to training hard, used to being put in positions and situations in training where the normal person would probably crack and fold. It’s kinda how wrestlers are grown up, I would say.”

On fighting St-Pierre (2007)
“Georges is a nice guy, but he’s trying to take food off my table. I’m trying to build a career here. This is something that I want and he’s trying to take that away from me. I don’t care if he’s a nice guy – I’ve got to kick his ass and it’s just that plain and simple. I’ve got to believe that until this fight’s over – &#$# Georges St-Pierre, he’s trying to take my dream away and that’s becoming a UFC champion. I’m not going to let him take that away from me. Maybe after the fight’s over, I’ll believe differently, but right now, my mindset is that he’s trying to take food off my table and take a dream away from me, so he’s the enemy right now as far as I’m concerned.”

On fighting “nice guys” (2007)
“I’ve worked hard to get where I am, and I feel I gotta do what I gotta do to make the fight go my way and think the way I think because that’s just the way it is. In wrestling I’ve wrestled plenty of nice guys, but when we’re out there, it’s a competition and I want to win. I don’t care about the other person and I don’t care about hurting their feelings.”

On the evolution of Josh Koscheck (2008)

“I think my fighting style has changed a lot since GSP. Mentally I was a little bit not there. I didn’t really work very much on my wrestling back then, so I’ve become more of a complete fighter and that’s one of the lessons that I’ve learned from fighting Georges St-Pierre.”

On happiness (2008)
“Now I’m happy. I told my management that I want to fight more. I want to fight as much as possible, and this year has been great because this is my fourth fight. It means I’m making money, and I’m happy.”

On the fans swinging over to his side (2008)
“It’s been a good reaction. I think the fans are starting to appreciate the fact that I am a true fighter and it just took me some to get around to that.”

On his love / hate relationship with the fans (2008)
“They love you even more after they’ve hated you, so if you can make someone hate you and then fall in love with you, you’ve got a hook for life. I look at it as a relationship. These fans might not like me, and I may not get every fan to like me, but I can’t control that. All I can control is winning and losing and training my butt off so I don’t have any lapses like the last fight (against Thiago Alves). I’m not concerned with being the good guy or the bad guy – I just want to win fights, because at the end of the day, that’s what it’s about. I’m an entertainer, but I’m also a fighter. I like to entertain people and I want them to get their money’s worth. What the hell is this crazy kid gonna do next? What is he gonna say next? And that’s the way I live. You gotta live on the edge and you’ve got to live life to the fullest.”

On trash talk (pre-Paul Daley fight - 2010)
“And when I talk trash – guess what? I show up and I fight. And that’s what this guy’s gonna have to do. He’s gonna have to realize that come May 8th, once we get into the cage, there is no more trash talking. He’s gotta shut his mouth and fight, and that’s the difference between me and this guy. He’s had a couple of good fights, but he hasn’t fought anybody like me, that’s for sure. I can guarantee that this fight won’t go past the second round. It will probably end in the first, but I may carry him to the second round.”

On being a complete fighter (pre-Paul Daley fight - 2010)

“The way I see it, Paul Daley is just a guy that just likes to talk trash and he’s a one-dimensional fighter. Those guys are from the old days – like the one-dimensional wrestler or the one-dimensional striker. Those days are over, and you’ve got to become a complete mixed martial artist. But I was at that point once. I was a one-dimensional wrestler, and coming from The Ultimate Fighter days, if you look at the evolution of Josh Koscheck, I’ve changed and I’m excited about the transition I made and the sacrifices I made to get here. I can submit guys, I can knock guys out, I can head kick guys, and I’m not gonna have a problem standing toe-to-toe with Paul Daley. He’s not gonna hit me with anything I haven’t been hit with.”

On winning (pre-Paul Daley fight - 2010)
“I feel like I’ve been through a lot to get here, and it’s been a tough six months with training and with everything going on. I’ve never done drugs, but you hear about people getting addicted to something, and while I don’t have an addictive personality, God, I love winning. When you win, there’s always an emotion that goes through your body that most people will probably never get a chance to feel, and it’s definitely unique.”

On the beautiful struggle (pre-Paul Daley fight - 2010)
“I’ve been in training camp for so long and it’s finally coming to an end – this is what you work for and what you dream about. All those nights thinking about the fight and the struggles to get here, I call it the beautiful struggle. It’s a struggle getting through training camp, getting up every day and pushing yourself and motivating yourself, and at the end of the day, the beautiful thing is that I get to go and beat somebody up for 15 minutes in front of a packed house in Canada and millions of people on Pay-Per-View. How much sweeter does it get than that? When you walk out of that tunnel and you look up, you think ‘Yeah, I made it.’”