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Randleman and Baroni add fireworks to Strikeforce


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If you're putting together a press conference and you want to make it memorable, invite Kevin Randleman (on the right) and Phil Baroni. To hype up Strikeforce's card in St. Louis on June 6, a press conference was held at the Scottrade Center. Randleman, who will fight Mike Whitehead at light heavyweight, entered with a throaty yell.

"Let him do the talking, and I'll do the walking," Whitehead said. At that, Randleman let out a loud, "YYYYYYEAAAAAAAHHHH!! LET'S GO THEN."

Baroni, also known as the New York Badass, didn't disappoint. He started out by saying that he didn't have much to say, but he then didn't stop talking. He directed plenty of snipes towards his opponent for June 6, Joe Riggs.

“Really, there’s not much to say. Joe’s 25 years old and he’ll have his day. On June 6, I’m knocking him the [expletive] out. I’m going to [expletive] him up bad. I’m going to bust him up the whole [expletive] fight. It’s up to him how long he wants to last. Whether he wants to last one round or he wants to last three – I’m going to [expletive] him up.”

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Riggs started to get snarky, as well. He used fighting to lose weight and get healthy, and couldn't help but take a shot at Baroni when talking about his weight loss.

"You know, everybody runs my [expletive] right into the ground about that question. Everyone used to say, 'Hey man, you used to weigh 300 lbs., as if I had big tits and a meat curtain for a gut, hell no am I going back to 300 lbs. I lost a lot of weight. Let's leave it at that. I'm not Jared from Subway. I walk around at 200-205, so maybe when I get older and my metabolism slows like Phil's, maybe I'll go up to 185."

Riggs delivered another dig when Baroni was whining about Strikeforce's lack of fight night bonuses.

"It would be nice to get a fight of the night bonus. A knockout of the night bonus, submission of the night bonus, that would be nice," Baroni said. Riggs chimed in and said, "You're not going to get knockout of the night! You'll get knocked out of the night."

Randleman said that he is not concerned about how he being away from fights will affect him.

"Considering the guys I train with at Xtreme Couture, I get beat up on all the time," Randleman said. Ring rust? It don't mean much. Phil and everyone at practice will knock the ring rust right off. I'll be shiny on June 6."

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With Randleman training at Whitehead's old camp, Xtreme Couture, is it possible that Randleman will have an inside edge? Not really, according to both fighters. Both Randleman and Whitehead said that they don't buy into strategizing much before a fight.

"I just recently learned that my old trainers are training [Randleman]. That doesn't bother me. There's not too many X's and O's in fighting," Whitehead said.

"I think every guy up here is set in his ways to train. I had to work on my ground game, but I don't think anything I've done in the last month will change the outcome or the course of the fight," Randleman said. "Mike Whitehead's going to go out and fight his fight, and I'm going to fight the way I fight all the time. We've both got heavy hands, and when you've got two people who will fight like that, it only takes one punch to knock a guy out. Everybody up here is pretty much set in their ways. We're all going to fight our fights. Styles make fights, and we've got great styles up here, and they all make great fights."

Of course, Baroni had a different take on the issue. He has a definite strategy.

"I'm going to punch in his face as hard as I can as many times as I can, until he goes to sleep and the referee pulls me off of him."

And how do you feel about your weight class, Phil?

"I [expletive] hate everyone at the 170-lb weight class. If you're a professional fighter, and you weigh 170 lbs.? I hate your [expletive] guts. I wanna [expletive] kill you. I hate Joe Riggs."

"But I love you Phil!" Riggs added.

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