PRE-PRIDE GRAND PRIX 2004 INTERVIEW
04/28/2004
Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira

Pride Fighting Championships: What are your age, height and weight?
Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira : 27, 6'3" and 103kg.
Pride : Who's going to be in your corner?
Nogueira : Bustamante, Alvez and Sperry.
Pride : You went to Cuba for boxing and have been working on muay thai. You're already a world-class Brazilian jiu-jitsu fighter. Would you say that you've spent more time on stand-up for this tournament?
Nogueira : 50/50. I'm still training on the ground. One month before the fight, we did a lot of ground training.
Pride : Are you going to try standing in the first round?
Nogueira : Yeah, I want to do it a little more. I have to move more, not stopping in the same place.
Pride : Will it help that you came to Japan a couple of weeks before the tournament, rather than the traditional few days before?
Nogueira : Yeah, it's going to help me very much. The day that I come to do the pre-fight interviews, I usually feel very tired from jet lag but I feel good today. It takes
Mario Sperry : It takes us about 28 hours to get here and then we have to go through Immigration. Then, we have to get on a bus. It takes us about 34 hours to get to the hotel.
Pride : How do you guys celebrate a victory when you go home? Parties? BBQs?
Sperry : I'm a married man and I'll tell you what, my wife knows everything.
Pride : How do you approach the first round fight? Your opponent is undefeated at 10-0 but he hasn't faced someone of your caliber. He's got a ground game. What challenge do you think Yokoi will present to you?
Nogueira : He's a good opponent because he has skills on the ground, like me. He moves well. He's fast, even though he's a big guy. I think he's a good opponent. He's technical. He's undefeated but I will try to beat him and make a loss in his career. I think every fighter in the tournament has some good skills and they all deserve respect. I will do my best and I think we will have a good match.
Pride : Ok, back to the party! Seriously, if I won, I would party for 2 days straight. What do you guys do?
Nogueira : They throw a party for me there.
Pride : Do you go out?
Nogueira : No, I bring everybody to my place.
Sperry: Yeah, his place is famous for parties.
Pride : There has to be some incentive knowing that Fedor is also in the tournament. You probably want to get rid of the word Interim from your Championship and unify the title. Or do you not care about that right now?
Nogueira : I care about it. If I go to the final match, I hope I can face him. I think we can meet each other in the final.
Pride : Was that your only loss?
Nogueira : No, I loss to Dan Henderson but that wasn't a very good decision.
Pride : Oh, yeah. I forgot about that. You avenged that, though.
Nogueira : Yeah. Dan Henderson's a tough guy, though. He's strong. He's flexible.
Pride : Yeah, you had him full in the shoulder lock?
Nogueira : I thought his shoulder was going to come out. He impressed me.
Pride : How are you and your brother able to take so much punishment and still come back victorious? Is it physical or mental?
Nogueira : It's both. We've been fighting each other since we were 2 years old.