Although James Toney said he is taking MMA very seriously, he also says that boxing is still his number one priority.
Toney who signed with UFC just last week, told sources that he will not stop boxing, and is in fact planning on having a fight in the next couple of months, even though he will be making his debut bout into the UFC this summer.
“I’m still a boxer,” Toney said. “Boxing is my number 1 goal… this is something that’s going to keep me invigorated. Unlike most boxing people, I’m a fan of MMA. Why not give it a chance?”
Between his boxing and MMA career, Toney could be fighting every two months. He stated that he’d actually like to get back to fighting that often and would like to alternate between his two sports.
“I’m going to go back and forth,” Toney said. “I’m a two-sport guy. I’ll fight in the UFC, then boxing, then another UFC fight, and then boxing. I’ll do as much as I can, whatever fights I can get.”
When recently asked if he thought he could realistically compete well while switching between MMA and boxing and only giving himself a few months rest between, Toney simply answered;
“Why not?” Toney asked. “Bo Jackson played football and baseball and was at the top of his game.”
Even though Toney is about 70 pounds heavier then he was in his prime, and weighs 225 (he needs to get down to 205 for heavyweight) he insists that he is not out of shape;
“If I were out of shape I’d be getting knocked out and beat up real bad,” Toney said. “I’ve had more than 80 pro fights and I’ve never been knocked out.”
When asked about if he was worried about ground game, Toney stated that he knows he will never be as good on the ground as some fighters, but he knows he can learn enough takedown defense to prevent the fight from ever even getting to the ground.
“There are a lot of guys in the UFC who can take me down, but I’m learning how to defend the takedown,” Toney said. “I’m not even worried about that. They’ve got to worry about that when they get in with me – how are they going to take me down? They’ve got to take risks when they take me down. They’re taking a risk that they’re going to get knocked out… There ain’t no one in the UFC that can go blow-to-blow with me. You know that.”
Toney also stated that he had other offers given to him from organizations as Strikeforce, but he chose UFC because he wanted to the be able to fight the best of the best. When asked about some potential opponents, Toney sounded pretty excited about the possibility of fighting the legend Randy Couture.
“Randy Couture is a legend,” Toney said. “He’s a great dude. If we fight I’d have to take my time and pick him apart. If that’s my first fight, it’ll be a huge fight.”
And when asked about the rumors of fighting Kimbo Slice, he stated that he felt Kimbo would be too easy for him. He doesn’t know if he will be fighting Kimbo or not, but he said that first fight will definitely be sometime this summer.