UFCís octagon will be on fire next Saturday (24). On UFC 104 main event, the Karate fighter Lyoto Machida will put the light heavyweight title in line for the first time, and his opponent will be MaurŪcio ďShogunĒ Rua. Before the fight for the title, Lyoto and Shogun agreed to TATAMEís invitation and were face to face to an exclusive chat that you canít miss. The result of this meeting you check below.
LYOTO INTERVIEWS SHOGUN:
How did you face the critics on the victory over Coleman?
Actually, I always see the critics as something to overcome, train more and recover what I lost. I know that my fans are hard, but they say it in a good way to me. Some people talked about Coleman, that he would beat me and other things. After I won, I didnít make a good fight, but thatís okay. I just want to see if the guy who faces Coleman now will knock him out quickly. I see the critics as an extra push. If I can filter it, itís okay. And everything went right. I like when people say things when they want good things to me.
How did you recover so fast to can beat Liddell?
People say that I was prepared against Liddell. I was prepared against Liddell and against Coleman, I felt like this, in the same way, prepared for both. But when I fought with Coleman, I was a year and a half without fighting and I have lost the notion of octagonís space, because I had never entered in a space with the size of the official octagon before, so I felt it. So when I fought Liddell, I emphasized that, to train on the real space of the fight. I think that on that fight I was adapted to Ultimateís conditions than I was on the other two fights.
How did you make the preparation to the fight against Chuck Liddell?
The preparation was very good, the training were in S„o Paulo, Iíve trained a lot of boxing, because heís strong in this area. I went to train in S„o Paulo because the best boxing coaches are there, S„o Paulo is very strong in boxing, so I trained with Julio Barros, with Lucas Fontes, so I was between Curitiba and S„o Paulo.
Chuck is a guy with a strong name on United States, thereís a glamour around him. What was the pressure that you felt on this fight?
Actually, we feel pressure in every fight because weíre athletes and we have responsibility to win all the fights, but I was focused on that. My big pressure was to show my value to the audience, that was my big pressure, not the athleteís, but mine.
What do you think about our fight and how do you see it?
I got really surprised with this fight because I like you, weíve trained together and talked sometimes. It was really a surprise, but the only person I wouldnít like to fight with is Wanderlei Silva. I respect you, youíre the top of the category now, but weíre professionals and we have to fight. Itís hard to talk about a strategy of fight, because sometimes we get there and canít make it. Actually I donít know what Iíll do, and I have no idea of what youíll do too. I hope that everything goes in my way, of course (laughs). But actually itís very hard you keep saying that youíll do this or that, each fight is a fight. Only on the night of the fight weíll see.
When you were recovering from the surgery, what did you think, where you anxious to be back soon? How did you feel at this time with your knee hurt?
Itís really bad to us, because weíre used to train all day long, and when we stop for a while, you get crazy, I made a lot o physiotherapy and thinking on coming back, because it depend of me only, and thanks God I could get well recovered, thereís no more problems.
How do you feel after leaving Chute Boxe, where you had a training routine with the guys and now you have your own team?
When I left I felt the difference a little, because on Chute Boxe we had a routine, all the training scheduled. Today I can choose my teachers on all the areas whether on boxing, muay thai, jiu-jitsu and wrestling and take the best of each one, I think that makes the difference and I have a good structure.
What did you think about my last fights?
You came from Karate. Everybody knows that youíre a very good guy, youíre a top, and Iíll train to beat you. On your last fights I think you surprised everyone, because youíve changed your game a little, going for it, searching the knockout.
What do you remember of my trains at Chute Boxe?
I remember we made more the boxing and a little ground, me with boxing gloves working on ground and pound. We didnít make sparring, but weíve trained some boxing, I remember that you expected for the guyís attack to counter attack. Your ground is kind of offensive, weíve trained a little, but I could see that you have a good ground too.
SHOGUN INTERVIEWS LYOTO:
How do you felt when they proposed a fight with me?
Actually, I didnít expect for this fight, I thought it was gonna be with Rampage, everything pointed at this, but Ultimate changed and told me you would be my opponent. At first I thought: ďwow! It wasnít on my plansď, but I knew someday we would face each other, because weíre on the same event... I respect you as a person and as a fighter, but I also want to defend my name, my team, my flag, our country and my state. So, I think thatís it, something very professional, it will only happen inside the octagon and I hope you think the same way.
And what do you expect of this fight, how do you think our fight is gonna be?
I think itís gonna be a fight very expected by all the fans, mostly on Brazil, I think it will have a lot of movement, a fight that have everything to be a big show to everyone who sees, because you have your qualities and your titles and I have my qualities and my title, so each one will be prepared and expecting to win. The audience can expect a big fight.
Iíve been in Belťm a few time ago and I saw that youíre a very popular guy on the city. How was that beltís conquest there in Belťm?
A lot of people told me that the city stopped and they received me very well here, by the politicians, the mayor, who came to meet me... There was a lot of advertisement of this, it was the first time that ParŠ could get a world title. I try to give it back to each fan I meet, with hugs, autographs, a smile, even a few words, and Iím very happy of the city likes me that way, because we want to pass the image of a healthy sport, for more people like that. Unfortunately, a lot of people still see that as a violent thing and we, fighters, are here to prove that it isnít like this, thereís rules, people prepared up there, itís a sport to entertain the audience.
About the preparation, what do you intend to do different for this fight?
About the physical preparation, itís basically the same, as the psychological, but, of course, on technical part I have to prepare myself for my opponent, so Iíll change my strategy for each fighter and youíre a guy who deserves all this attention on your game, because youíre very versatile and showed that, but I believe a lot on what Iím doing.
Is it true that you drink urine in the morning? Why?
I do it because is a tradition from my father, from our family, my grandfather did it too and my father explained to us that in the times of the war always miss support medicines and a Japanese general, when the country were bad in war, had nothing and the only thing that he prescribe was urine and a lot of people that had ills as gonorrhea and skin ills, got better with time, after two, three months doing it, they started to heal of all that. I saw people with diabetes that got better on sugar levels on blood, so I believe that and I do it everyday, specially when Iíll fight, itís not that I wonít get sick, but I think itís harder, because I believe that urine have much hormones as GH and hormones are released during the sleep, and I take advantage of that.
About Rashad, a very tough guy, how did you work to get such an amazing victory?
My team is really well structured, besides itís not too big, but itís great on technical and human material to train, we have a lot of people here, so all of this helped me a lot on the fight against Rashad. The main point was the strategy that weíve put on the fight, we could make him enter on our game, and that was really important to win
Dana White wants to make an event on Brazil, would you like to participate? What would be your dream card to Brazilians?
Wanderlei against Belfort, Minotauro against Brock Lesnar, me against Quinton Jackson, Shogun against Forrest, Anderson against Fedor and, if GSP moves to middleweight, heíd face Demian Maia.
Are you taking English classes?
Yes, sometimes I study more, and sometimes less. I study alone, sometimes, but I always take the book to study. I think itís really important do develop myself up there, inside and outside the octagon, because sometimes you have interviews. When the fight ends you want to pass a message to the audience, say something besides thank you, people have to see who you are, so is with the language that we communicate easily. I didnít participate of the last TUF because of my English, so I have to get better to have the opportunity to be on The Ultimate Fighter.