There’s no questioning that Alistair Overeem has pulled a complete reverse in his career as of late. Once an obscure mixed martial artist who always possessed talent but did not live up to his expectations, Overeem has since done things that no other mixed martial artist has been able to accomplish in their careers.
While “The Demolition Man” boasts the Strikeforce heavyweight title, he has also successfully parlayed his career into the kickboxing realm, picking up the most prestigious title with the K-1 World Grand Prix 2010 championship in December of last year, defeating tough opponents in Tyrone Sponge, Gokhan Saki, and legend Peter Aerts en route to the title (all in one night).
Coupled with his improving jiu-jitsu skills, Alistair will use the upcoming Strikeforce heavyweight tournament in order to solidify himself as the true number one fighter on the planet in the MMA world.
“Everything is different now for me than when I fought Werdum. I was a light heavyweight then and I’m a heavyweight now. I’m much better than I was then.”
The Dutchman originally met with the submission specialist in 2006, succumbing to a kimura in the second-round of their heavyweight fight under the PRIDE banner. Both men have progressed leaps and bounds in their respective MMA careers, however all the buzz has been around Overeem, who has looked almost unstoppable since committing to the heavyweight division in 2007 full time.
In his last bout, Alistair, 30, deftly TKO’d Brett Rogers inside of the first-round. Rogers earned the title shot after knocking out former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski in approximately 20 seconds, and followed up the win with a spirited performance against legend Fedor Emelianenko, however eventually yielded to strikes in the second-round.
Of his only two losses in his professional career, it was the loss to Overeem that seemed the most impressive, when “The Reem” made it look to easy defeating the knockout artist inside of the opening round.
And while he doesn’t necessarily hold any credible victories recently over big named talent, Alistair hopes this eight-man Strikeforce tournament, beginning with Werdum in the quarter-finals, will change all of that for the part-time K-1 star.
“Cain Velasquez is No. 1 now because I haven’t competed against the names”, said Alistair.
“So there is that argument, that I haven’t fought the caliber opponents I should — I wanted to, but either they wouldn’t fight me, or the schedule didn’t work out. But that’s what this tournament is about.”
So, MMA peeps, what do you think of Overeem’s comments? Do you think him delivering the goods at the end of the eight-man GP make him the best fighter in the world, or will Cain Velasquez still hold that rank? The UFC heavyweight champion recently claimed the top status when he defeated former titleholder Brock Lesnar in an effortless TKO win last October. Sound off in the comment section below.