(Props to Sherdog.)
by FIGHT! contributor Kim Schemer
Alexander Gustafsson’s nickname is “The Mauler,” and the moniker is apropos of an undefeated fighter who’s never seen the third round.
Gustafsson had a successful career as a boxer when a friend persuaded him to give MMA a try, and he ended up liking it. A lot. And he was good at it, finishing seven of his first eight opponents by KO, TKO, or submission inside of two rounds. The other victory on his sheet came by way of decision.
The Swede has competed for competed for the Polish promotion KSW, Shooto and FinnFight and is set to make his Ultimate Fighting Championship debut at UFC 105 on Nov. 14 in Manchester, England. “The Mauler” will face once-beaten EliteXC vet Jared Hamman.
Despite his early successes, Gustafsson says he is lucky to have the opportunity to step into the Octagon. “This is a major step in my career,” he said. During a break from his training, FIGHT! learned that Gustafsson is a man of few words. Maybe he’s more loquacious in Swedish.
FIGHT!: With regard to your upcoming fight with Hamman, what changes with your game plan/training camp when you are fighting another striker?
Alexander Gustafsson: Nothing special, I stick to my game plan.
FIGHT!: I understand that Fedor Emelianenko is your idol, why?
Gustafsson: I like his style and feel of the game, and I also like his personality.
FIGHT!: Do you have any thoughts on the stacked light heavyweight division of the UFC?
Gustafsson: It is a tough division, but I’ll take one match at a time.
FIGHT!: Who is your dream opponent in an MMA match?
Gustafsson: Anyone that the UFC puts in front of me.