Pre-fight interviews with Murilo Bustamante is available online.




Pride Fighting Championships: How are you feeling now? Pretty good?
Murilo Bustamante: Yeah.
PRIDE: Compare how you felt back in August.
Bustamante: It's totally different. In August, I wasn't prepared for a fight at all. No training, no thinking about fights. My mind wasn't there.
Mario Sperry: I called him and told him that he was supposed to fight. Only one day before he was going out and partying. He was just arriving back home in the morning from a party.
PRIDE: Is the main difference mental or physical?
Bustamante: Everything. I've been training for this fight and I prepare my mind when I train. Training for 6 weeks. Because after the last fight, I had some injuries in my hand and I had to spend some time in therapy.
PRIDE: Before the last fight, you said that you felt you were meant to be there. A calling, essentially. Were you pleased with your performance against Rampage?
Bustamante: Yeah. I just didn't know if I could finish the fight. I think I did a good job. I honored a deal with (Brazilian) Top Team and Pride. I'm happy for the last fight and I'm happy to be here again. Pride invited me again.
PRIDE: So, you've trained for 6 weeks. Do you have a specific game plan this time?
Bustamante: ...yeah.
PRIDE: ...anything you can tell us?
Bustamante: Yeah, I saw his fights many times. I know how he plays. He fought twice against our students, Arona and Nogueira. He's tough and I'm going to have a bad time winning. He's very good at takedowns and his boxing is pretty good too. He's got a good right. I have to be careful on my feet. I think it's going to be a very good fight.
PRIDE: I think the game will be more tight with you, rather than Nogueira, because Nogueira is so much bigger.
Bustamante: I hope so.
PRIDE: Well, you've got a good right, too. Watching all the fights, usually a fighter has one strength but you seem so complete. You've got takedowns and really light on your feet. What do you think is your strength and how would you fight you?
Bustamante: I think my best quality is my fight on the ground, jiu-jitsu. Everything I do comes from jiu-jitsu.
PRIDE: If you were coaching someone against you, what would you advise them?
Bustamante: I would tell them to give up! Maybe, keep me on my fight. It depends on the openings.
PRIDE: What is you weight?
Bustamante: 90 kilos.
PRIDE: You were like 85 in the UFC.
Bustamante: Yeah, I had 6% body fat in the UFC but now I'm about 10%.
PRIDE: Do you have a family? Kids?
Bustamante: Family, yes. Kids, no. I'd like to have a kid around 2005.
PRIDE: You want to have a lot of kids?
Bustamante: No, just 2. One boy, one girl.
PRIDE: What do you do to relax? What kind of music?
Bustamante: Brazilian sounds. I like different kinds of music. Bosanova. Samba. Rock. Frank Sinatra.
Sperry: He always says that I'm uneducated.
PRIDE: What's your lucky number?
Bustamante: I don't know.
PRIDE: What's you prediction for the GP, if you don't get in?
Bustamante: I think Wanderlei got the easy draw. Everybody has a chance to win though, including Yoshida.
PRIDE: How would you rank the other fighters?
Bustamante: Of course, Wanderlei because he has the belt. Quinton. Chuck. And then, Yoshida. I think Chuck Liddell is close to me. He did 2 fights in PRIDE.
PRIDE: How old are you?
Bustamante: 37.
PRIDE: Has getting older changed your fighting style? Especially, after 35.
Bustamante: I try everyday to learn something about my weaknesses. I know my weaknesses and I know what I want to learn so I study a lot.
Sperry: In my point of view, he's a much better fighter than before. I've known him for more than 20 years. He's getting better all the time.
Bustamante: Our training is like a laboratory. Everyday we try to create something.
Sperry: He has improved so much since last year.
Bustamante: In our academy, the young guys are very good. I always feel that I'm getting old.
Sperry: But even the young guys wake up complaining that they are sore. I ask, "how old are you?" They say "23" and I think oh my God. You know nothing, yet! Those kids give us the strength to go on everyday though. We work everyday and they make us feel young. We work everyday with kids 18-28 years old.
PRIDE: Do you know when you will give it all up?
Bustamante: I know that when I have some problems, I will stop.
PRIDE: Is there a new generation of fighters coming up in Top Team?
Bustamante: Yeah, a lot. Amazing. Fast. Good takedowns, good jiu-jitsu, good takedowns, good punching, good strength, everything.