Dave Deibert: What’s the best practical joke you’ve played in the locker room or the best one someone’s played on you?
Rich Franklin: That’s all we do. I could go on for days. But since you brought up locker rooms, one of the most shocking moments I’ve ever had in the locker room was when I fought in Germany. The sauna in Germany is co-ed naked. The showers are co-ed naked. I was cutting weight. I walk out of the steam room one day, cutting weight, and there’s three girls standing there naked, showering. And I’m trying to play it cool, like that’s just normal for you because it’s normal for them. They’re like ‘Hello.’ You’re trying not to stare, like they’re just one of the guys and you’re not going to stare at them. That was a pretty weird thing to walk out on. We knew, they told us, about the co-ed naked locker rooms. It said on the sign: do not get in the sauna with clothing on. We’re cutting weight, didn’t really see the girls. Then one day, bam! They’re standing there. I was like, ‘Holy crap.’ (laughs)
DD: At the 2008 Paper-Rock-Scissors national championships, Wanderlei Silva beat you in the decisive round with scissors cutting paper. Did beating him at UFC 99 make up for that loss or does it still haunt you?
RF: No, no. I beat him in the paper-rock-scissors.
DD: I got that wrong. You beat him?
RF: Of course.
DD: So you’re 2-0 against him.
RF: Exactly. But one of them is the important one, and that’s the paper-rock-scissors (laughs). We go to the competition. It’s at Mandalay Bay (in Las Vegas). We’re just doing a little exhibition but this is, like, a $50,000 tournament. These guys aren’t a joke. There’s a sanctioned body. There’s referees for this stuff. These guys take this crap seriously. It’s so funny because before it began, Wanderlei had never played paper-rock-scissors in his life before. So I was backstage, in broken Portuguese, trying to explain how to play paper-rock-scissors the best I could. When we came out, in broken English he tried to tell everybody he was a world champion back in Brazil (laughs).
DD: Name one thing about teaching that you enjoyed more than being an MMA fighter.
RF: I didn’t get punched in the face.
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