GTR Archives 2000-2020

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Global Training Report

Presents

Interview with

Murilo Bustamante

Interviewed by Paulo Ruy Barbosa

From Gong Kakutogi Plus, 

Vol. 9, Oct. 2000

Translated by Yoko Kondo

Q.       Why did you leave Carlson Gracie and form your own team?

Murilo: There were some inconsistencies in opinion on some points between Carlson and us, and he expelled us.  There were many things we couldnft understand in his way of management of the team, training for us, and business.  He tried to get us to sign a contract with a lot of unreasonable requirements, so we rejected it. Then he announced on the internet that he was kicking me, Mario Sperry, and Ricardo Liborio off his team. When I said, g I want to thank Carlsonh, immediately after my victory in UFC-J, one reporter asked me, g you seemed to be kicked off of the Carlson team.  What are you going to do from now on?"  We canft accept his way of doing this.  He should have told us directly on the phone.  Anyway, we had a problem with him from a long time ago. He didnft care about  our training for a long time, except for the time when a fight money is very high.  He came to Rio just before only that kind of fight.  Since Carlson is not in Brazil, the team was always training in my academy [in Leblon] or De LaRivafs academy [in Copacabana].  It is not our decision to leave from the Carlson team.  In some contracts Carlson made, there was nothing written about his duty, but only the duty of fighters. For example, it says that in case of a breach of contract, the fighter has to pay $l,500 a month for the next 10 years.  After all some fighters left him following us and joined our Vale tudo team, Alan Goes, Vitor Belfort, Carlos Baretto, Ricardo Arona, Bebeo Duarte, Marcus Conan Silviera, Alex Negao, etc.  Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, who is not from the Carlson team, joined us.  He was a member of the Ricardo De LaRiva team.  There are jiu-jitsu fighters in our team, so we are going to participate in jiu-jitsu fights too. We are expecting some fighters to make their vale tudo debut in future.

Q.       Did Carlson give his students a special training for vale tudo?

Murilo: Yes.  We did training for vale tudo together.  He taught us good techniques, but it was a very short time though. For my previous fight, I had to go to his place in America. It was only for two weeks. If I hadnft visited him in Los Angeles, he would not taken care of my training at all. All the members of the team were dissatisfied with this condition.

Q.       Did Carlson engage in the negotiation of the contract or fight money as a match maker of the team?

Murilo  No, he had never done any of it for the fighters. He was just a trainer. The fighters had to do everything by themselves including making a contract and the next fight. Most of us were hiring a manager for that. So we had to pay Carlson for his work as a trainer and pay a manager for the management.

Q.    Did the fighters pay Carlson something like a fee every month?

Murilo: Yes, they did.  But they didnft have to, if they didnft have money.  It is the same in my dojo too.  But it doesnft mean he has a right to get money from them in future.  It is just like a scholarship. All they have to do is to work for Carlson in future in return for his favor in such a way that they will teach his class for free. I had been doing it myself for many years too.  As Carlson lives in California, we had been taking care of his dojo in Rio out of gratitude.  It would have failed, if we hadnft helped it.  Ricardo Liborio, for example, had taught the lessons for free for three years in Carlsonfs dojo.  Carlsonfs students had been training in my dojo for a long time, and they tried to pay me a monthly fee.  But I refused it and told them to pay it to Carlson dojo.  I always had a lot of respect and gratitude for everything Carlson taught me, but he was not sincere to me and my team mates.

Q.       Well then, what are you planning to do with this new team?

Murilo: As I told you before, our plan is participation in vale tudo and jiu-jitsu fights.

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Q.       What is the name of the new team?

Murilo: Itfs Brazilian Top Team.

Q.       Where is your dojo?

Murilo: It is in Leblon close to Ipanema in Rio.  It is a high-class area in the city.  The dojo is small, but the environment is good.

Q:  Are all the members of the team going to participate in Pride?

Murilo: No, it is not limited to Pride.  If there is a chance, we will fight anywhere.  We donft make an exclusive contract with anyone.  Each fighter can find the best group to fight for him.  But we come to an agreement in that no fights if your condition is not well-prepared.  It is not good to fight only for money.  We stick to how we fight, and want to keep a high evaluation.

Q:  Is there a manager for the team, or is each fighter hiring his own manager?

Murilo: Each fighter has his own manager.  We might have one manager for the team in future.

Q:  What is your plan as a fighter?  Are you going to focus on only vale tudo, or participate in jiu-jitsu fights too?

Murilo: I want to do both.  But vale tudo will be the main thing at this moment.  I am a professional fighter, and want to make money.

Q:  Tell me your past record in vale tudo.

Murilo: Six wins and one draw in seven fights.  A fight with Tom Erickson ended in a draw.  Out of six wins, one was by KO, one by TKO, and four by submission.

Q:  You have a very good record, but the number of your fight in vale tudo is fewer than I expected.

Murilo: There are many good fighters, but there are few big tournaments.  Many fighters submit themselves to fight with a small fight money.  Some American fighters are fighting for peanuts instead of money.  But I am a fighter earning a high fight money.  I am an elite fighter in vale tudo placed on a little higher level than the average.  So I wonft do it if the fight money is not enough.  Japan is leading vale tudo of the world now, and fight money is very attractive.  Since I was offered a very good condition, I made a contract of three fights with Super Entertainment and UFC-J in Japan.  I am very satisfied with this contract and the support by Japanese promoters.

Q:  When is your next fight?

Murilo: It is scheduled on September.  I donft know who will be my opponent yet.

Q:  How long are you going to fight in vale tudo?

Murilo: When I was young, I was thinking of my retirement at the age of 30.  I am 33 years old now, but I think I can keep on fighting at a high level for the next few years.  So I wonft quit yet.  What is important is to maintain the body in a good condition and to keep on having a strong motivation.

Q:  Did you watch the fight between Royce and Sakuraba?

Murilo: Yes, I did.  It was Roycefs mistake in strategy.  It is ridiculous to fight in gi in vale tudo.  It is to Sakurabafs advantage.  Moreover, he shouldnft have fought with Sakuraba in a standing position.  If I were he, I would fight in a different way. Royce should focus on more weight training to build up his muscle so that he can get power.  He has a good technique, but he should build up more muscle and enhance body function.  The stronger body he has, the better fight he could do.

Q:  Do you want to fight with Sakuraba?

Murilo: I said many times before, but absolutely I want to fight with him.  He is a great fighter. I like challenging.  I am not worried about if I can win or not.  I just want to fight with the best fighters in the world to show my technique.

Q:  Do you think Sakuraba is the best fighter in the middle class?

Murilo: No, I donft think so.  He is one of the best fighters though.  He is most well-known, and in the spotlight most now.  Thatfs all.  There are many other great fighters in the middle class besides Sakuraba.

Q: If Sakuraba fights with Frank Shamrock, who do you think will win?

Murilo: It will be a close fight.  I canft say who will win.

Q:  What type of fighter do you think can defeat Sakuraba?

Murilo: He should be an all-round fighter, who can fight in a standing position, has a good technique of take-down, and is good at the ground fight.

Q:  Did you watch the fight between Rickson and Funaki in May?

Murilo: Yes.  Rickson did well. But Funaki was not qualified enough to fight with Rickson, I think.  Rickson should fight with someone with higher technique on higher level.  Funaki is tough and brave, but his technique on the ground was very limited.  Rickson should fight with the best fighters in the middle class.  There are many good fighters in the middle class who can fight with Rickson.

Q:  Can I have a message to the Japanese fan?

Murilo: I have a great respect for Japanese philosophy and self-control.  It was a long time dream to fight in Japan.  Fortunately my dream came true.  It was a great experience.  Japan is a land of birth of warrior, and a country of great fighters.  From now on I would like to fight many times in Japan.  Japanese people are very polite and the best spectators for kakutogi fights.

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GTR Archives 2000-2015

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