NJPW STRONG Openweight champion “Filthy” Tom Lawlor recently spoke to Fightful about a wide range of topics, including his thoughts on facing Alex Coughlin at Josh Barnett’s Bloodsport 7 event, which takes place tomorrow. Highlights are below.
Says he didn’t know who his opponent for the show was going to be:
The whole time when names were getting announced for Bloodsport and I would see matches announced by Josh on Twitter, I don’t know that anybody knows the match-ups before he announces them. Nobody’s clued us in. So, I’m sitting there and I’m like, ‘Who’s it gonna be?’ I see a match announced, I’m like, ‘Oh, it’s not going to be one of those guys,’ and you start wondering who it’s going to be. I’m looking at the list of guys and this is a guy that over the past year, maybe a year and a half, since we faced off.
How much Coughlin has grown over the last few years:
This guy’s grown tremendously. I know he’s done work with Josh. I have been able to witness firsthand what they do under Shibata and I’m sure that he’s gonna be more than versed. I know he’s more than well prepared in legitimate fighting styles and fighting arts. This guy is a horse. Pound for pound he’s probably the strongest guy, I think, on the entire New Japan roster. New Japan Strong, the main roster included. He’s out there [corellon lifting] two guys at once. He’s just got phenomenal strength. Which is very, very tough to deal with.
What his strategy will be in the match:
But I have experience on my side. One of the things that’s good and bad about Coughlin being in the position that he’s in is that in the young lion system, you’re restricted in a way as to the offense that you can have. I’m not. So I’m gonna have a great variety of techniques to throw at him. His basics and his fundamentals are gonna be off the charts, through the roof. But it’s not gonna be enough to carry him in this contest. I know because he tweeted about this back when the match was announced. I was the last guy he wrestled before he injured his neck a year ago. I’m just going to go right back after it. Why would I do anything differently?