Pitbull Atodiresei

A great champion and his life, career and future plans

He is an exceptional fighter, with a career not many people can boast about and a name that Romania takes pride in. Ionut ‚Pitbull’ Atodiresei gave an emotional interview to our publication ‚Casino Life & Business Magazine’, where he was open about the most influential things in his life.

– When did you first come in contact with the fighting?
– I started doing this sport at 13, in 1996. Three years later, I participated in the first national kickboxing championship, where I was crowned the winner.

– What made you choose this sport of kickboxing?
– I was short in height and really wanted to learn how to fight and become a big name.

– You debuted in 1999. Do you still remember that game? How was it, what did you feel about it?
– In 1999, I was very scared about my first championship. I thought that this sport was not quite for me. I defeated my opponent for fear. When the final bell rang, I realized that I had been kicking all the time, through all three rounds.

– You are 31 and your career is impressive. What are your plans for this year and where exactly are you driving at, from your profession perspective?
– Yes, I am 30 and I really want to be able to fight for more 4 or 5 years. I must defend my WAKO PRO world title and, why not, to make a start in MMA.

– You are a WAKO PRO world champion in the 64.5 category. How did the fight against Aitor Eguzkiza go? Was he the ‚acid test’ for you?
– That game was rather difficult. The Spanish fighter is complicated, not typical, left-handed like myself. And, above all, he was willing to do anything would take to retain the title that he had already defended twice until then.

– When did you join the Local Kombat professional galas?
– I have been fighting in the Local Kombat galas for almost 10 years, since the fall of 2003. My debut was in the second Local Kombat event in Timisoara.

– How many belts do you have and which is the game that you remember with your mind and heart?
– I have 5 belts in all at home. I got one during a Wushu World Cup in the summer of 2003 (Italy); then, the WKN European title came in 2004 – one year later, I defended it against Denis Varaxa, a Byelorussian fighter. In the summer of 2012, I won the WAKO PRO intercontinental title in Craiova, against Sașa Jovanovic. Thus, I became the challenger to the WAKO PRO world title, which I got on 07-12-2012, against Aitor Eguzkiza. The latest two WAKO PRO games were the hardest.

– You were named the citizen of honor of Falticeni municipality in 2007. How does it feel to see that your value is being acknowledged? What do you think about joining a stellar pleiad of sport personalities – Maria Olaru, Vasile Nistor, Constantin Chiriac and Mihaela Pohoață, who made Romania proud?
– I wear the name of Fălticeni on every shirt when I am fighting. I am more than thrilled to be from Fălticeni and I want to give the people there a reason for being proud, as this is something dedicated to them. I was chosen a citizen of honor of Falticeni in 2007 and I am truly honored to be part of that group of people who have brought an important contribution to the image of the city.

– Who has been the most difficult opponent you fought against and who is the one you would like to meet?
– I had very many tough opponents during my 100 games. Names like Sașa Jovanocic, Dogo Neves, Denis Varaxa, Diara Modibo fit this description. As for a certain name, I really don’t have any. They will be coming to fight with me, that’s for sure.

– Have you ever thought of leaving Romania and settling somewhere else?
– Yes, I did think so many times about leaving Romania, but I was younger. Right now, I do not want that anymore. I really wish to achieve something in my country, for my country.

– How do you get along with coach Alin Panaite?
– I have been working with Alin Panaite for 8 years now. We both went through ups and downs, we were together in all these and we will be in the future.

– How do you get over a defeat, what exactly motivates you to keep walking forward?
– Generally speaking, a lost game is not a failure. Should you take some time to think it over, you can learn more from a defeat. You get to see the mistakes you made, you correct them and later try not to repeat them again.

– You are both a great fighter but also a good coach. Many VIPs come to see you during the training classes. What is your relationship with them?
– I have a team that I am training – PITBULL DIVISION – children, young and older people, all social classes, even local stars. I get along with everyone but in class they have to listen to me, I am the coach after all.

– Mass-media in Romania talks a lot about you. Is that a good thing for your image?
– One reason why I am a visible person in the Romanian mass-media is that I fight a lot at galas that are broadcast everywhere and my results are my pride. I am trying to build the image of a hard-working man, who works for his money (as I have always done), so that I can turn into a good model to be emulated by other talented children.

– My understanding is that you want to be a referee. This means that you do not want to break your ties with the sport that consecrated you after you retire from the arena.
– I have umpired many games. When I am done fighting, I will not be out for good from this world. Instead, I will keep coaching, training, organizing events and doing many other things related to this sport.

– This October, you have scheduled the most beautiful game in your life – the marriage ceremony to wed your beautiful wide, Oana. Any details about it?
– We had our civil ceremony last September, on the 7. This year, on October 19, we will have our religious ceremony at the Aristocrat Events Hall, in Pipera. I truly want to be a special night, for us and for our over 200 guests.

– Is Ionut Atodiresei what would be called an accomplished man? What else do you want for yourself?
– I am a really accomplished person. I want to be healthy, be able to work, have wisdom and children, with God’s wish.

– How is a regular day in the life of a great champion? What piece of advice would you give to people wanting to go off with this sport and become champions?
– Let’s take Monday, for example. In the morning, training with the PITBULL DIVISION, then I train myself and, sometimes, I go to the ABSOLUTO Club, which is for Brazilian jiu-jitsu. For people who want to get involved in this sport, my advice is that they should be passionate, hard workers and have a lot of patience.

– Do you have a message for the ‚Casino Life & Business Magazine’ readers?
– I wish them the best!

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