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JOE ROGAN Q&A: UFC Judges, cooking steaks, black holes

There’s nothing like asking unanswerable questions, such as, “Who’s the better UFC fighter — Anderson Silva or Georges St-Pierre?” But I asked Joe Rogan that and more, since he’s performing standup Friday at Mandalay Bay, then doing color commentary at UFC 132 Saturday at MGM.


ELFMAN: Who’s better, Anderson Silva or Georges St-Pierre?

ROGAN: I wouldn’t say who’s better. You never know who’s better until they fight. Stylistically, it would be a very, very interesting fight because of Georges’ wrestling, and Anderson has shown some susceptibility to wrestling, especially in the Chael Sonnen fight.

I think it would be a really intriguing match-up if Georges ever did decide to go up to 175 pounds. His frame could carry it. But on the feet, when it comes to standing up, I think Georges St-Pierre is at a bit of a disadvantage to Anderson. I think Anderson is one of the most dangerous guys on the planet when it comes to striking.

When people ask me who’s the top pound-for-pound fighter in the world, I say Anderson Silva. But I wouldn’t be completely surprised if Anderson and Georges fought, and Georges beat Anderson. I also wouldn’t be surprised if Anderson knocked Georges out. You never know. There are a lot of questions.

And that’s one of the hallmarks of a really exciting fight, is questions. … If those two — Georges and Anderson — were in peak condition, and at the top of their game, I think that it could be the biggest superfight in the history of the sport.

They’ve talked about doing that fight in Dallas Stadium — that big crazy stadium in Dallas that holds, like, 70,000 people. … It would almost be a shame if it never took place.

ELFMAN: It always seems like there’s some superfight that everyone wants but never happens, like with Fedor (Emelianenko). What could be the stopper?

ROGAN: For Georges, it’s like — why would he jump up 15 pounds more and fight a guy who’s much bigger than him? A guy who’s fought at 205 pounds before?

Anderson has fought very successfully at 205, knocking out Forrest Griffin, who was at one time the UFC light heavyweight champion. So he’s a bigger man.

But if Georges did it correctly, and did it with plenty of time to put on muscle and get acclimated to having muscle on his body — so he’s not out of shape, and he can carry the weight well — I think it would be a spectacular fight.

But only Georges knows how much weight he can carry. Only Georges knows whether or not that would be a good move for him. He’s never fought at 185 before.

ELFMAN: Who’s the most underrated fighter?

ROGAN: Probably Frankie Edgar. A lot of people don’t give that guy credit. He’s the lightweight champion, and he went through that ridiculous five-round war with Gray Maynard in his last fight, where he got battered in the first round — and almost stopped.

And he came back and, in a lot of people’s eyes, won every single round after that, which was incredible, because the first round of the fight was about as one-sided and lopsided as it could get.

I think his technique, along with his cardio and his guts and his heart — I think he’s a really, really underrated fighter, unfortunately, even though he’s the champion.

ELFMAN: You’ve been really open about the judges — when you think they’re good or bad. What are your thoughts about the judges today?

ROGAN: Some of them are great. … Some of them know what they’re doing. Some of them know the sport.

But there’s a bunch of people doing it just as a job. That’s the real problem. The real problem with judging is incompetence. The real problem is: (judges) that really aren’t fans of the sport, and really don’t have a deep knowledge of the sport.

They’ve been boxing judges, and then they took some seminars to learn to become mixed martial arts judges. I think they’re doing it as a job.

Clearly there’s a lot of anger as far as fans go, and as far as fighters go. There’s a lot of anger about some decisions, and rightly so. I think they have a point. And that point is, they feel there’s a lot of (crappy) decisions.

It just needs to be leaned up. Keith Kizer (executive director of the Nevada Athletic Commission) did one good thing, where he instituted the use of monitors for judges, which I think is a good step in the right direction.

With those monitors, the judges are gonna get a chance to see what’s going on when they don’t have a good angle.

I’m as close to the fights as you can get. I’m sitting on the apron. I’m touching the cage, literally. And there’s moments where I can’t see what’s happening, because they’ll be fighting, hidden behind a pole or in a corner. I have to look in the monitor to see what’s going on so I can commentate correctly.

And if I have to look at a monitor to commentate correctly, for sure someone has to look at a monitor to judge correctly.

I have to see what a guy’s doing. I have to see what his arms are doing: "Oh, he’s setting up a choke," or "He’s setting up an arm bar." And sometimes, you can’t see it from just looking at it.

But from the monitor … you can see things you can’t see otherwise. Those things are very important as far as judging which guy’s winning the fight and which guy’s not.

ELFMAN: What are you thoughts on the mergers?

ROGAN: UFC has already merged with the WEC, and now they’ve purchased Strikeforce. It’s only going to get better. It’s only going to make more fights, and more dream fights. For the fans, it’s an amazing thing.

For instance, Georges St-Pierre is now going to fight Nick Diaz. Nick Diaz is the long-time Strikeforce champion and former UFC fighter who’s gotten so much better since he’s left the UFC. And now he’s gonna get to fight Georges St-Pierre in October.

ELFMAN: You’re in Vegas so much, why don’t you live here?

ROGAN: You like living in Vegas? Really?

ELFMAN: Yeah, it’s the best city in the world.

ROGAN: I hear that from some folks. And from other folks, I hear it’s a soulless void — the event horizon of suck, and you have to get out of it before it steals your soul. I don’t know who’s right.

I love the restaurants. If you’re into nightlife, there’s no better city on the planet. It’s great for touring shows, and touring musicians.

ELFMAN: Well, you have kids, so you’re probably concerned about raising kids here?

ROGAN: You have to watch them 24 hours a day. It’s like bags of money. You’re children are like something that someone wants to steal.

ELFMAN: I’ve seen you talk up N9Ne Steakhouse on Twitter. What else are your favorite places here?

ROGAN: N9NE is my favorite. Craftsteak at MGM. And there’s a steak place at Mandalay Bay. I’m a carnivore. I like meat.

ELFMAN: I’ve seen you write on Twitter that steak has to be grilled at home a certain way.

ROGAN: You can’t have propane. You gotta have real fire to really ignite your caveman instincts. You want to get the real manly outdoor cooking effect. That’s really imperative.

ELFMAN: I’m not going to ask you to do your standup act for me, but what’s on your mind in your standup lately?

ROGAN: The world through my eyes. Having kids. The apocalypse. The impending technological singularity. What can we do to make this life more enjoyable.

ELFMAN: When you say “apocalypse,” are you worried about 2012?

ROGAN: I’m not worried about that, as far as, “The date is coming!”

But I think the impending technological singularity is something we should all be thinking about. … There’s an acceleration of technology that is undeniable. The exponential increase in everything from processing power to innovation to artificial intelligence.

There’s so much going on right now, scientifically and technically, that it’s unavoidable that we’re going to reach some point zero — some point where everything completely changes, even more radically than what has changed since the advent of the Internet.

We’re on the verge of spectacular discoveries, scientifically.

And that is, if we don’t blow ourselves up, or if we don’t get hit by an asteroid, of if the polar icecaps don’t shift, or if the super volcano in Yellowstone Park doesn’t blow and kill everyone on the continent. There’s a lot going on.

ELFMAN: I saw your Tweet about black holes wandering through the sun.

ROGAN: It’s crazy to think about wandering black holes, wandering through our galaxy. …

They also believe inside every galaxy is a super massive black hole that is one-half of one percent of the entire mass of the entire galaxy.

The most recent speculation is, inside that black hole may well be an entire other universe … that inside every black hole there’s hundreds of billions of galaxies, each with black holes inside of them, and when you go through that black hole, hundreds of billions of galaxies more — each with black holes! The whole thing is entirely fractal and never-ending, and it just keeps going on and on and on. You can’t even wrap your head around it.


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