Bas Rutten might just be the ultimate T-man. This 6'1", 220-pounder is a former Ultimate Fighting Champion and three time King of Pancrase. According to a Belgian physician, his Testosterone levels are higher than two normal men put together, which may explain how he used to so easily relieve bouncers of their AK-47s in the Ukraine.

Rutten is a pioneer in Mixed Martial Arts. Some say he did for MMA what Arnold did for bodybuilding – bringing a charismatic and approachable face to a sometimes controversial sport, a sport often perceived as a seamy subculture and associated with barroom brawlers like UFC bad boy, Tank Abbott. Rutten (also known as "El Guapo") is most visible these days as PRIDE's color man and has appeared on TV shows such as Martial Law.

I hooked up with Bas while he and other experts were giving their "Complete Combat Seminar" at the Self Defense Institute in Fremont, California. A couple of weeks later we sat down in his hotel room in Tokyo to talk about his career and his current projects. Here's how it all went down.

Testosterone Nation: Many of T-Nation's readers may not be familiar with your background, so could you tell us how you first got involved in Mixed Martial Arts?

Bas Rutten:

T-Nation: So did you end up fighting him?


T-Nation: This was all in Holland?


T-Nation: That must've been disheartening.


T-Nation: How did your first fight go?

T-Nation: And who was that opponent?

T-Nation: But that was open-handed, old Pancrase rules, right?


T-Nation: When did you start adding submissions to your repertoire?


T-Nation: How did you go from Pancrase to the UFC?


T-Nation: Tell us about the movie you're in now.


T-Nation: Straight to video?

T-Nation: I saw the episode of Martial Law you did. How did you get, was that from the UFC?

T-Nation: Cool. How'd you become involved with PRIDE?

T-Nation: Do you have any good behind-the-scenes stories about PRIDE?

T-Nation: You have a reputation of being something of a wild man.

T-Nation: Are the stories exaggerated, or is there some truth to them?

T-Nation: There's the one about you pissing on a cab driver in Russia.

T-Nation: What city was it?


T-Nation: You have a DVD coming out on street fighting. How would you fight differently in the street from in the ring?

T-Nation: There's a section on weight training in one of your books. What are your thoughts on weight training for the fighter?

T-Nation: I see you using a lot of machines in the books. What do you think about the argument that free-weight or bodyweight exercises are better for sports?


T-Nation: When we met in California, you were giving the seminar with the Krav Maga guys. How'd you get hooked up with them?


T-Nation: Do you agree with most of Krav Maga's ideas?


T-Nation: What else is in the works?

T-Nation: This is foreplay?

T-Nation: Do you have any plans to compete again?

T-Nation: You also train fighters yourself, correct?

T-Nation: Which of your fights are you most proud of?


T-Nation: The Japanese fans like fighters that show a lot of heart, huh?

T-Nation: This has been a lot of fun. We do appreciate your time.