Arnaud “The Game” Lepont has found himself in a dream fight; instead of finalising recent online spats and callouts (from either side) with the likes of Ray Elbe, JJ Ambrose, Will Chope and Isamu Himura, Arnaud will be competing in One FC against the greatest lightweight in the short history of MMA.
He is aware, it seems, that despite his decent record and style, that he is coming up against a superstar of the sport and a man who has contributed a great deal of its most memorable moments (from Aoki-plata’s to arm-breaks, flip-offs to tearful tantrums, faceplants to face-cranks, Aoki’s 2006-2011 was extraordinary). He is aware that he is, simply put, an underdog.
I know that i am a HUGE underdog. You can all say that i don’t stand a chance against the Legendary Tobikan Judan. Haters can say that i will lose under a minute. But i keep finding on the web that Kai was a sure lose for me, than Cris haja who beat Wiktor Svensson would kill me in the first round, that Brian Choi would pound me to death….sorry guys. I don’t give a f&*k about being a underdog. I have been a underdog all my life…and i will always believe in me :) I will maybe lose in a minute…but at least, i will step in the cage and face my idol when other will just talk shit and keep fighting in B level show. Living my dream. Win or Die Trying – kemenangan bagi malaysia
Think back to some of the biggest underdog stories in fightsport. Honeyghan against Curry, Tyson against Douglas, Eubank against Benn (first), Benn against McClellan, Calzaghe against Lacy, Morales against Maidana (yes he won) and Sprott against Harrison are ones that spring to mind from the boxing world, in K-1, say no more than Sapp/Hoost I and II, and as for Mixed Martial Arts, little Frankie Edgar against Penn (both times!) and possibly Royce Gracie against Ken Shamrock in the first fight (if that can be counted, being UFC 1) and – perhaps crucially for Lepont – Joachim Hansen against Aoki in their second fight, are memorable examples.
Can Arnaud Lepont emulate Hellboy, in the equivalent of his own Grand Prix final? Can he land that shot, that flurry, that kick, stop that takedown, roll and escape, slip out of the hold… can he avoid that legendary grappling game of The Tobikan Judan long enough to land those hurtful shots? Can he put Aoki in an awkward spot, press him, exhaust him, smother him, long enough to land Ground’n'pound and hurt Aoki’s notoriously brittle chin?
Can Arnaud make history?
I need only to point to Jienotsu Nagashima, and remind you that despite the freak nature of the K-1 kickboxer versus Mixed Martial Artists mixed rules fight, that it was in the MMA round when Aoki’s ill-timed and ill-fated takedown led to his being knocked cold. Even greatness looks distinctly ordinary sometimes. And who’d put money on Nagashima beating Aoki in MMA?
So can Arnaud do the same?
Now is your time, Frenchie. Make “the frog mob” proud, mon frère.