ONE FC’s Eddie Ng is one of the better up-and-coming lightweight talents in the world. Also known as “The Magician,” Ng taught himself Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu through the use of instructional videos and books. While that might not seem unusual for newcomers to the sport, Ng won a 2011 world title in BJJ. The gifted fighter recently spoke to MMAFrenzy’s Steve Barnes about a variety of topics including trash talk, training, and chili.
A popular discussion prior to UFC 148 was the use of trash talk to both hype fights and play mind games with your opponent the way Chael Sonnen has mastered over the years. Ng was asked prior to UFC 148 whether he has ever had someone attempt to get in his head that way and how he handles the trash talking before a fight. Ng replied:
“I’ve had people trash talk but no where near the level of the Sonnen/Silva trash talking! I think Anderson Silva really showed off his class as a person, professional athlete and martial artist by not firing insults back.
Trash talking is part of hyping up and building excitement around a fight. It is not in my nature to trash talk prior to a fight but I accept that it is part of the sport and so it makes handling much easier when your on the receiving end.”
Ng is a member of one of the premier training camps in Asia known as Evolve MMA. The Singapore-based camp has become the main training facility for Ng and his high profile teammate and trainer Shinya Aoki. Ng had the privilege of training with Aoki and then traveling to Cleveland, Ohio for Aoki’s Bellator 66 bout with Eddie Alvarez. With so much hype for the long-awaited rematch, Ng was asked if he felt any of the pressure as a training partner in such an important bout.
“Honestly, there was no pressure. Here at Evolve MMA we work, train and fight together as a single unit, when one of our fighters win, we all win. When a fighter loses, we all feel the loss.
We have an incredible team of instructors here at Evolve MMA, Muay Thai World Champions such as Attachai Fairtex, Orono Wor Petchpun. BJJ World Champions Leandro Issa, Zoro Moreira. Former US Greco Roman Wrestling Olympian Heath Sims. Every instructor has their own role, we all each hold equal value. Everyone gives their heart and soul to the team.”
Bellator 66 was an action-packed card from start to finish that featured some of the organization’s best talent. With all the talent around the arena that night, one had to wonder if any of the other fights or fighters caught the talented lightweight’s eye.
“I actually didnt get to see the other fights on the night, my priority was to make sure that my team mate Shinya Aoki was ready for his fight…” he continued, “However, one fighter on the card has continued to impress me and that is Rick Hawn. He has a beautiful Judo game and the ability to end a fight with a single strike or even throw!”
While Aoki fell victim to the hard-hitting Alvarez that night, it certainly was not from a lack of commitment from him or Ng. Ng takes the duties seriously and spent his short stay in Cleveland making sure his teammate was as ready as he could be prior to the bout. With that said, it had to be asked if the Singapore-based fighter was able to enjoy one of the important landmarks of Ohio cuisine, Skyline Chili.
“Unfortunately I did not experience Skyline Chili. My visit to Cleveland was only brief and I didn’t have much spare time outside of my duties with Shinya.”
“The Magician” will be returning to the stage later this year to continue building on his strong 5-1 start to his career. The talented fighter is certainly one to pay attention to as he gets better with each fight. Be sure to stay tuned to MMAFrenzy as we follow all things MMA.
Interview by Steve Barnes
Article by Chris Leslie