“I have this crazy part of me” - Mikey Musumeci says he performs better when an opponent is hostile

Mikey Musumeci - Photo by ONE Championship
Mikey Musumeci - Photo by ONE Championship

Reigning and undisputed ONE flyweight submission grappling world champion 'Darth Rigatoni' Mikey Musumeci of the United States went completely off script following his submission victory over rival Gabriel Sousa at ONE 168 a few weeks ago.

After tapping Sousa, a former IBJJF world champion, with a calf slicer, Musumeci went on a verbal tirade against the Brazilian in his post-fight interview. Needless to say, 'Darth Rigatoni' was totally amped and feeding off his own adrenaline.

Speaking to Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour in a recent guest appearance, Musumeci says he was able to perform so well because there was a lot of animosity between he and Sousa, and that he fed off that negative energy.

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'Darth Rigatoni' stated:

"I have this crazy part of me. So when they do that to me, I fight better. I thrive in toxicity. So the more toxic and hostile they make it, the better I compete. Because then I go crazy, right? So I think the best game plan if you're fighting me is to be really nice, because then I'm really nice and I'm smiley, and then I don't even want to hurt the person. I'm very smiley, I have the vibe of training when I have matches with them."

Unfortunately for Musumeci, he will have to rely purely on his skill in his next match when he takes on close friend Kade Ruotolo.


'Darth Rigatoni' Mikey Musumeci takes on Kade Ruotolo at ONE 168: Denver

Flyweight submission grappling king 'Darth Rigatoni' Mikey Musumeci will attempt to become a two-division world champion when he takes on fellow American Kade Ruotolo for the ONE lightweight submission grappling world title.

The two lock horns at ONE 168: Denver, in ONE Championship's return to United States soil. The event broadcasts live from the Ball Arena in Denver, Colorado on Friday, September 6th.

Fans in the United States and Canada can catch all the action live and absolutely free on Amazon Prime Video.

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Edited by C. Naik
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