Bellator 261 Fighter Pre-Fight Interview: Simon “Hemlé” Biyong is Ready to Take on any Challenge

PC: Masashi Hara/Getty Images

FighterPath had the pleasure of sitting down with Simon Biyong to discuss his upcoming fight with Christian Lee. The fight takes place at Bellator 261 this Friday, June 25th, at the Mohegan Sun Arena.

KV: Welcome to America! We are here at the Mohegan Sun in Connecticut. With all that said, you had a literal last-minute opponent change. How did you react? Was there no time wasted or did you think about it?

SB: I didn’t want to say no because I was ready to fight. I told my management that it doesn’t matter who the opponent is, I just want to fight. My last fight was in 2019, so more than one and a half years since then. I do not want to stay inactive that long, so I told my management I’m ready. Whoeevr it was, Chadwick or Christian, I’m just ready to fight. I truly feel like I’m ready to take on any challenge.

KV: So your last fight being in 2019 and being almost 2 years ago, a lot has happened. COVID hit and it stopped you from properly training and provided other road blocks. How did you cope with it and resolve it?

SB: Honestly, I never stopped training. I’ve had a garage that I used as training space with my coach. During the pandemic, this allowed me to continue my training. I thought this is the best moment for me to improve myself while keeping my body in top condition. I knew only the strong survived the pandemic. That was the mentality that got me through the pandemic. After the pandemic, I would be ready to take on any challenge. So at the end of 2020, I accepted a fight with Melvin Manhoef. Unfortunately, the fight got canceled, and it devastated me. One of the most challenging moments in my career, but I kept my chin up and made it here, even with all the last-minute turbulence with this fight.

KV: With the acceptance of the last-minute fight, Have you changed the game-plan at all, or are you going to stick with the original training camp game-plan?

SB: Obviously, this is a new opponent who has new tools and new tricks. With my former opponent Lee Chadwick I had a physical advantage, as well as a reach advantage. Now with Christian Edwards, he’s built like me. There isn’t much difference in the physicality or the reach between us. So there has been an adaptation to our game plan for fight night. But at the end of the day, it’s just a fight. I’m going to meet him in the cage, and the best fighter will prevail.

KV: A non-MMA question, if I may? I see you’re wearing a Naruto shirt. I’m a big anime fan! I just finished Naruto and am heading over to Shippuden myself! Would you call yourself a big anime fan?

SB: YES! I’m a big anime fan. If you didn’t know, I also am an artist, and I love to paint. I think I was born with a sketch pencil in my hand, haha! I ended up even joining a Fine Arts academy back home. Art is a passion of mine. I’d never stop loving to paint and draw. It helps me showcase a different part of my personality. It helped me learn that life is not whatever is just in front of you; there is so much more to be explored out there within yourself and the world. That theme helped me connect with anime. It was In a translation from a show’s episode I watched. “You can be more than what you think you are capable of.”

KV: Wow! Wishing you good luck on Friday! So I want to thank you for joining us and spending time with FighterPath.

SB: Thank you, my friend!

Kevin Varghese

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