Global Training Report
Translated by Yoko Kondo
Q: First of all, tell
me about your fight with Gilbert Yvel.
Victor: I feel good. I
think it helped spread my name to Japan. He is a very famous fighter in
Japan and is a king of Rings. So I think I could help promote my
comeback in Japan with that fight.
Q: It was your third
fight in Japan, wasnft it?
Victor: Yes it was,
following the fights with Joe Charles in UFC Japan and with Sakuraba in
Q: Yvel is called a
dangerous striker, but your punches were more effective.
Victor: Yes. Everybody
has his own tactics. When I was young, I was so immature that I was just
fighting without any thought. But now I consider it a very serious job.
I used my brain in the fight with Yvel so that I could prevent him from
using his knee or kick. And I could control the fight from the beginning
to the end. I would like to thank Jesus Christ for all I could do there.
Q: You are a jiu-jitsu
fighter, but you mainly stress punching.
Victor: Yes, and I am
training kicking too now.
Q: Is that so? Why did
you start the training of boxing?
Victor: I observed many
kinds of fighters to study their strategies before I started NHB. There
were not many grapplers who were good at punching, so I wanted to fight
in a different way from them. Fortunately I have been training boxing
from my younger days, and I had a gift for that from God. The trainers
also appreciate my punching technique, so I am trying to use it in NHB
Q: I heard that you
were very close to participate in the boxing competition in Sydney
Victor: Yes. I was
supposed to participate in the national competition to select a
representative of Brazil, but I couldnft do it because of injury.
Taking it the other way round, however, I can be here to fight in Pride
because I didnft go to the Olympic.
Q: It was said that
ground fighters were stronger than strikers around the time when Royce
showed up in UFC in the first time. What do you think about it?
Victor: Nobody knew
about the ground technique those days; chokes, armlocks, leg locks,
nothing about them. Then strikers started learning the ground techniques
so that they could have more chances to win. However, I am originally a
jiu-jitsu fighter and a good puncher too. It is my strong point. Now it
is indispensable for fighters to master all kinds of technique.
Q: It means being an
all-round fighter is a key to success in NHB.
Victor: Thatfs right.
Q: Now we have a
kakutougi called gSeikendoh in Japan, whose purpose is to develop
the technique for beating up an opponent before getting into the ground.
Tell me your opinion about it. Ebenezer Braga, for example, is
participating in it.
Victor: I donft like
it so much. If I make a rule, the standing technique will be limited to
only punches and kicks, but no elbow, knee and head-butt. The ground
technique, on the other hand, should be limited to submission and
punches, but no kicks, elbow, knee and head-butt. I think fighters are
protected safely under this rule and the fights will be exciting for
spectators. Then it will become very popular and have a big sponsor.
Consequently fighters will become famous and better off just like soccer
Q: How about Rings KOK?
Victor: I donft like
it so much, because it limits punches in the ground to only body. That
rule is much safer, though. The rule of Pride is good, but it should
prohibit kicks and knee in the ground. They are useless, and there is a
possibility to give a fatal damage on fighters.
Q: Igor Vovchanchyn,
one of the top fighters in Pride, seldom fights in the ground. He is
good at escaping from tackles and a very strong puncher. It seems that
strong strikers like him will come out more and more in numbers than
ground fighters in future.
Victor: In a fight with
a fighter like him, it is important how to hold him in the ground.
Q: Do you think
jiu-jitsu fighters also have be all-round in order to survive as a
winner in the world today?
Victor: Thatfs right.
Q: You belong to the
Brazilian Top Team. Do your teammates, Murilo or Sperry, think that way
Victor: Yes, they do.
Q: By the way, Sakuraba
said that he has never talked big in response to what you called him a
Victor: Is that so? I
heard that he was saying, gVictor is weakh, or gBrazilians are
weakh, or glet me fight with a stronger fighterh. I will apologize
to him, if itfs not true. Actually he was very friendly when I
directly talked to him. But it is not good if he is speaking ill of me
or other fighters. It happens to anybody to lose due to a bad condition.
But if hey are not his words, I have to say gsorryh to him.
Q: Certainly he said,
glet me fight with a stronger fighterh. [Translatorfs note: Mr.
Sakurabafs precise words were gmotto tsuyoihito to yarasete
Victor: I donft think
it is appropriate for a professional to say such a thing. He should keep
mouth his shut and show his appreciation to people around him. It is
impolite to say, glet me fight with a stronger fighterh. Even strong
fighters are not always in perfect condition. I entered the ring that
day despite a broken bone in my hand. Look at his fight with a strong
fighter, Vovchanchyn. Vovchanchyn played with him like a child. And it
ended with him [Sakuraba] throwing in the towel. Everyone has good days
and bad days. So it is not acceptable to say something arrogant
when you win. Vovchanchyn lost to Coleman, and Coleman lost fights too.
Kerr lost to Fujita [translator's note: Kerr also lost to
Vovchanchyn]. Even the greatest fighters can have a bad day.
Q: Yes, right. I think
Sakuraba had no intention to insult you. Did you call for a rematch with
him to shut his mouth?
Victor: No, I didnft
mean that. I did it because I have confidence in giving him a better
fight next time so that the fans can enjoy it. But there is nothing in
my mind now but the fight with Matsui Daijiro on Sunday. Tell Sakuraba
that right now I am thinking about only Matsui. First I have to beat
Q: I see. Do your best.
I am expecting a good fight.
Victor: Thank you. I
will do my best.
(c) 2000, Yoko Kondo,
all rights reserved.