On November 2nd Bas Rutten?s Anacondas face Matt Lindland?s Silverbacks in their bracket of the IFL pre-season semi-finals, setting the stage for the World Team Championships on December 29th in Connecticut. The other bracket consists of Pat Miletich?s Silverbacks facing off against Carlos Newton?s Dragons. The Silverbacks are the team everyone is talking about because they won the pilot or ?Legends? tournament back in April and June but due to the league format they don?t get automatic defending rights, they have to work their way back to the finals by first defeating the Dragons. Mike Pyle, a member of the Anacondas, faces the Wolfpack?s Matt Horwich at Middleweight in Portland. In previous updates which are in the ADCC News archives Mike talked about his early career at Middleweight and his later career at Welterweight previous to the IFL. In IFL Mike fought Rory Markham at Welterweight in April before moving back to Middleweight in order to allow Jay Hieron to move in as the Anaconda?s Welterweight. Mike?s two fights in IFL lasted a combined total of just over one minute. KM: Is IFL home now? MP: It is getting more and more like home. For my last fight I was a lot more comfortable. I think the whole team was a lot more comfortable with some of the things they wanted us to do a little out of the ordinary like warm up beside the ring instead of the back. I think I like fighting in the ring better; it is a big ring and you got room to move and fight, you aren?t forced out into the middle and just have to fight. KM: How do you feel about the move back to Middleweight now that you defeated John Cole? MP: Look at the numbers from the last fight, it was 5-0 (team score). I believe the step up in weight and Jay Hieron taking that 170 spot was the best thing we could have done. I wouldn?t say ?sacrifice?; I fought at 185 before so it is not new territory for me. We are solid in every weight right now. KM: What was it like from a team perspective walking away with a clean sweep? MP: Off the hook. That is how I called it. KM: It was especially significant in light of many in the press myself included that were saying the Silverbacks were the only true team in the pilot tournament, that the others didn?t have the family atmosphere. MP: That was true. We united together in L.A. with Bas and we kicked some ass. Bas put us through some grueling training and we were ready. We were ready to beat the Silverbacks. They are the team to beat and we are the team that is going to beat them. KM: What caused the team to gel that quickly, to turn around and unite? Was it Jay or one of the coaches? MP: We knew we needed to stick together as a team and all get together and train on a daily basis. It was a little scatterbrained the first time, running around here and there. Two of the teammates are from Canada?at the time we just couldn?t fit together like that. We made plans for the next time to get together and train as a unit. KM: You are back in L.A. now? MP: Yeah, we have all the guys except the Lightweight with us now. Between now and then it is going to be hard running, hitting the mits, picking our opponents apart and finding their weaknesses, figuring out what they are best at, and working on those weaknesses. We are going to wound them in that area, keep pounding them in that area until they are done. We are going to walk away to the finals on this. KM: Arte you still training with Randy Couture at all? MP: When Randy is in town. KM: One angle I?m curious about is since your team is facing the Wolfpack aka Team Quest and you are facing Matt Horwich if Randy who used to lead Team Quest is any factor in your training. MP: Not right now. Randy has a lot of things going on at the moment. I?m mainly working with my teammates and Bas right now. I believe our striking is what is going to win it. Last time our grappling done it, this time we are going to have to pick these guys apart with standup because they like to take it to the ground. KM: Chris Wilson stands out to me as the Wolfpack member that likes to stand more than shoot. MP: We have something for that as well. He does like his knees and likes to bounce in and out and come back in with a little combo here and there but nothing we don?t see on a daily basis. We got something for all that. KM: What are your thoughts on fighting Matt Horwich? MP: Like I said in the beginning our standup is what is going to prevail in this fight for all of us. KM: Horwich especially used to be known for his BJJ background but standing would cover and rush to clinch for a trip, not try to engage on the feet. MP: That is the way he is still, he is still one-dimensional and I don?t think he will ever change. It is his mentality to take some shots just to get in but the shots I?m going to give him I don?t think he is going to be able to handle. KM: What do you think of the rest of your team?s matchups? MP: The matchups are going to do well because these guys all pretty much want to grapple us. I?ll go right back to what I said in the beginning, that our striking is what is going to prevail.KM: What do these semi-finals in November mean, what is ?the pitch?? MP: This one here is going to put us in the finals. We are the two teams I believe are expected to meet. I have a feeling the Silverbacks might do it and we have to redeem ourselves to them. I?m not going to get to do the fight I want (rematch Markham) but Jay is going to do it and break his face for me. I believe that is the way it is going to be. We have to step it up but don?t think we can step it up any more than we are. We are all healthy and in shape. I?m excited about it and confident we are going to take it. KM: Which is most important; the rings themselves, the individual win, the team win, and the chance to fight the Silverbacks again. MP: The chance to fight the Silverbacks again and show what we are really made of this time. The rings represent hard work and payoff and goes to show what these guys (IFL) are trying to do, try to make it rewarding to work hard and put it all on the line. The chance to fight Horwich is a chance to showcase skills I haven?t been able to show so much. KM: Are you looking past Horwich at all? MP: No. I learned a lesson on looking past people, even if it is their first fight. I looked past Rory Markham and he caught me. A little too relaxed, played around with him a little when I should have went out and (won).KM: When did you start preparing for this show? MP: We had a week off and slowly merged back into it. Our Heavyweight (Krzysztof Soszynski) was right back in the mix fighting in TKO so he was right back in the mix, didn?t really catch a break. We didn?t lift a stride. KM: That TKO title shot did raise questions about his priorities and team training. MP: That was up to him and IFL. If they make that agreement then that is what they make. When the full season pops off I don?t think we are going to have time to go anywhere else. KM: Any tension among the team he took that fight and could have been injured or made extra money? MP: No. We are all fighters and have to make a living. He needed to go out there and fight. He has a kid and things he has to take care of. KM: Anything else you want to get across to the fans about this upcoming show? MP: They will see it for themselves when it happens, who the toughest team in the IFL is. We will always be the team to beat. KM: Sponsors to thank? MP: Fizogen and Couture Nutrition.