Q&A with One Fighting Championship’s Soo Chul Kim

Soo Chul Kim vs Leandro Issa at One FC Champion vs Champion

Soo Chul Kim (born December 10, 1991) is a mixed martial artist from Gangwondo province in South Korea.

He has a professional MMA record of 4-1. At only 18 years of age, Kim made his professional MMA debut in a featherweight match-up against DEEP and Shooto veteran Yasuhiro Kanayama. He won by first round submission to win the Rising One Featherweight title. Ater this fight he dropped down to bantamweight.

He trains at Team Force and has been described as one of the most exciting MMA prospects in Korea. Kim fought former BJJ world champion Leandro Issa at ONE Fighting Championship: Champion vs. Champion at the Singapore Indoor Stadium on September 3rd, 2011 losing via Unanimous Decision.


Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

Soo Chul Kim:

I have only just turned 20 and I had my first fight when I was 18. A year ago I was a student but now I am a full time fighter.  My family used to be against me fighting MMA but now they are my biggest supporters.

What are your thoughts on your fight with Leandro Issa at One FC 1?

Soo Chul Kim:

It was one of the most memorable fights I have had, it was fun. I wasn’t expecting the crowd to be quite that big but it didn’t make me nervous, I was excited.  I am not satisfied with my performance though because I lost.

Leandro Issa is a BJJ world champion but were you surprised by how good his stand up was?

Soo chul Kim:

No I was expecting that but I think if we fight again I would win!

Were you surprised by the decision?

Soo Chul Kim:

No, I felt like I lost.

Leandro Issa looked a lot bigger than you, do you cut much weight to make 135 lbs?

Soo Chul Kim:

I cut about 8kgs for that fight. I used to fight at 145 lbs and when I get older I think I will move up in weight but I will be fighting at 135lbs for the next few years.

Are you going to fight again for One FC?

I hope so, now that Road FC is part of the One FC network I think you will also see more Road FC fighters fighting for One FC.

Did you watch the other One FC fights, What did you think?

Soo Chul Kim:

I went to the hospital after my fight so I didn’t see any of the other fights but I have watched them on the internet. Yodsanan Sityodtong is the same weight as me and he has heavy hands but if there is a chance I can fight him, I am sure I would win!

Did a lot of people in Korea watch your fight on the internet stream?

Soo Chul Kim:

A lot of people watched me fight and they all said I could do better next time. I would definitely fight Leandro Issa again and I think the outcome would be very different.

You seemed very confident in that fight and you kept smiling, do you enjoy fighting?

Soo Chul Kim:

I had a good time and I think Leandro Issa did too. You don’t know that feeling unless you are in the cage, it’s not like you hate the other guy it’s just sport. I really had fun, we both did.


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