Wrestling / Andrei Kopylov

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/kop.jpg
Watch out for a leglock.
"His kansetsu-waza is one of the best in the world. His stamina, unfortunately, is not."
Kenichi Takayagi, Japanese RINGS commentator.

Andrei Kopylov is a Russian sambist, professional wrestler and Mixed Martial Arts fighter. He started his career as a regular sportsman, but he switched to the martial art of sambo, and he proved to be a rising star when he tapped out his own coach after only some months of training. Soon he was competing at national scale, winning medals and championships at two weight categories, but his plans to challenge for the world title were derailed by the politic situation of USSR. For that reason, Kopylov left sambo behind and embraces professional wrestling, joining Akira Maeda for his promotion Fighting Network RINGS. He would become an instant fan favourite for his ridiculously anodine looks and brilliant grappling, and RINGS's transition to MMA only served to propel him even higher with an outstanding performance at the first King of Kings Tournament. However, the age and scars soon took their price, and Kopylov wandered through RINGS brands until joining Volk Han to form the famous Russian Top Team, mentoring dudes like Fedor Emelianenko and Sergei Kharitonov.

As usual, you can find the basics at The Other Wiki.

"The Bear's Tropes":

  • Acrofatic: Downplayed, but still there. Kopylov was stout and not very agile-looking, but was fast over his feet and able to dive for flying leglocks with surprising ease.
  • Attack! Attack! Attack!: His fighting style, nicknamed "Kopylov Yoiken" ("Kopylov's Drunken Boxing") by the commentators, involved overwhelming his opponent with submission attempts in order to end the bout as soon as possible. He once had Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira of all people stuck in the defending role for one round.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: A main trainer in Russian Top Team and a foe to fear.
  • Badass Grandpa: Started MMA at 34 (not particularly old, but still quite old compared to the average debutant) and shocked everybody.
  • Badass Mustache/Porn Stache: Sported a walrus mustache to complete his plumber looks.
  • Badass Teacher: To names like Fedor Emelianenko, his brother Alexander, Sergei Kharitonov and others as a trainer in the Russian Top Team.
  • Bald of Awesome: Not completely bald, but he lacked a lot of hair on top.
  • Captain Ersatz: The character Antoine Kovirov from High School Exciting Story: Tough was a barely disguised copy of Kopylov.
  • Charles Atlas Superpower: Was said to be enormously strong, which was specially surprising given that he didn't look very muscular, and it gained him his bear nickname.
  • Confusion Fu: Even before entering turtle mode, Kopylov always looked vaguely tired at the best and in the verge of fainting at the worst, so many of his opponents were wary of him, knowing that one single possible burst of energy could be enough for Kopylov to screw them.
  • Cool vs. Awesome: His matches against Volk Han, and why not, his fights against Minotauro Nogueira and Sperry.
  • Curbstomp Cushion: Even after he spent all his energy in the first round against Nogueira and was dominated at the second round, Kopylov still recovered enough gas to hit a tomoe nage as a last showing of defiance.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: With his receding hairline, flabby belly and sleazy mustache, he looked virtually everything but a fighter, and certainly did not have a fighter's athleticism, but Kopylov wasn't a sambo championship for nothing, and had certainly one of the sharpest grappling attacks on the circuit.
  • David vs. Goliath: He was much heavier than Ricardo Arona in their match, but it can be said that Kopylov was the David here considering his weight was mostly fat while Arona was younger, made of pure muscle and even stronger than the already powerful Russian. It was better exemplified every time Arona shot for a double leg takedown and Andrei was thrown around like a ragdoll.
  • Death-or-Glory Attack: Andrei's submissions were elite level and could hook almost everybody if he nailed them quickly, but his stamina was downright abysmal, so if he failed at ending the match in under three minutes, he was screwed.
  • Does Not Like Shoes: Inverted. He wore wrestling shoes in MMA if the ruleset allowed it.
  • The Dreaded: After watching Kopylov in action, even the reigning Brazilian jiu-jitsu practitioners of the time realized that trying to engage him on the ground was playing Russian roulette at its finest. Minotauro Nogueira ditched groundwork after a round struggling with Andrei on the mat, prefering instead trying luck on the stand-up despite not knowing if he could best him there, and Nogueira's trainer and multiple world champion Mario Sperry literally panicked out during his match with Kopylov when he felt him grabbing his leg.
  • Embarrassing Nickname: A rather positive example. After his shocking victory over Castello Branco, Brazilian people nicknamed him "Vovo Sapateiro" ("Grandpa Shoemaker") due to his looks and footlock expertise.
  • Escape Artist: Got threatened with several rear naked chokes and armbars in his match with Ricardo Arona, and escaped unscathed from all of them.
  • Eye Scream: Suffered an eye injury in his match with Ricardo Arona.
  • Foil: To Volk Han. While Han was an athletic military sambist with a penchant for controlling strategies, Kopylov was an overweighted artisan specialized in short bursts of explosiveness. Their looks were also the opposite, with Volk being slender and handsome in contrast with the chubby and bald Andrei, and finally, Han was nicknamed The Wolf while Kopylov was The Bear.
  • For Want of a Nail: Had he reacted a second before, he would have a kneebar victory over Mario Sperry in his record.
  • Glass Cannon: Cardio example, as opposed to defense. Kopylov was actually as difficult to submit as good himself submitting people, and he didn't lack toughness as well, but he lacked the cardio to follow up with his offense through the matches.
  • Good Old Fisticuffs: Aside from his sambo, Kopylov had relatively good hands.
  • Hero Killer: At the time, Leonardo Castello Branco was a rising star in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, having won the world championships and even traded victories with the mighty Ricardo Liborio. Then he was pitted against Andrei Kopylov, and the results are history.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Volk Han. He made his debut against Han, was his main training partner in RINGS Russia and Russian Top Team and even made an instructional video together titled "Commando Sambo."
  • Husky Russkie: Subverted again, as his looks were rather atypical for your classic hulking Russian, but he had the skills to go along.
  • I Can Still Fight!: Had the unfortunate tendence to lose matches by premature stoppages or petty cuts despite being still functional.
  • I Know Sambo: As said, a multiple sambo champion. He also had somewhat of a background in boxing.
  • Instant Expert: As mentioned, Kopylov tapped his own master, who was a sambo champion himself, after mere months of training.
  • Lethal Joke Character: Who would have thought than a fighter who looked, moved and punched like an octogenarian could submit people in under a minute?
  • Mother Russia Makes You Strong: Subverted - he was very strong, but got tired easily.
  • Nerves of Steel: Having Ricardo Arona hooked to their back would have scared everybody, but Kopylov was almost more concerned over catching his breath than having to defend those annoying choke attempts.
  • Oh, Crap!: Tended to elicit this reaction on his opponents when they realized how good he was on the ground. Averted with Castelo Branco, who didn't realize it until it was too late.
  • One-Hit Kill: His specialty. He submitted Leonardo Castello Branco in 16 seconds (becoming the first Western fighter in submitting a BJJ black belt) and Ricardo Fyeet in half of the time.
  • Red Baron: "Shinigami Sambist", "Russia no Higuma" ("The Russian Brown Bear").
  • Stone Wall: Once Kopylov switched to defense move after spending all his energy, neither Minotauro Nogueira nor Ricardo Arona snatched a submission from him.
  • Stout Strength: He had the RINGS Russia trademark thick waist, and was frekishly strong as well.
  • Surpassed the Teacher: His sambo master was his girlfriend's father who got him interested in sambo, and Kopylov once actually beat him in a contest.
  • Trying to Catch Me Fighting Dirty: He accused Mario Sperry of greasing up during their fight. It's unknown if Sperry was really oiled up, but at an instance Kopylov seems to slip off his legs when trying a double leg, so you never know.
  • Worthy Opponent: Apparently, this was the Brazilians's opinion of him after his grappling feats.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: Unfamiliar with striking on the ground due to the RINGS ruleset, Kopylov tried to turtle up against Sperry in PRIDE, thinking he would go for submissions. It was an error, as Sperry didn't want the words "Kopylov" and "submissions" in the same sentence and instead opted for kicking him in the face.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Wrestling/AndreiKopylov