Victory over Funaki Masakatsu
Puroresu November 6, issue No.980
Statement in the ring following his Victory over Funaki
I was waiting for Funaki to make a mistake in his motion.
I think he had no fear as a fighter. He did
his best, and it was a good fight. But I think it
will bring him a chance to think about or learn a lot
of things. Well, there is something I want to say
here. First, I would like to thank God from the
bottom of my heart. Thanks to God, I could have done
such a great achievement so far. And also I want to
show my appreciation to my family which is the source of my power.
My father, brothers, wife, children, and students, many thanks to
them all. I thank God for giving me a birth in a
wonderful family. And I want to say thanks to my
friends. With these all supports, I could be here as I am now.
And a heartfelt thanks to all my fans in the world as well.
I play a role to
spread jiu-jitsu to this stage as a Brazilian. I have
never considered Japan an enemy. On the contrary,
Japan is one of my families. So I wish I will have
another chance to see you again. And I also
appreciate the promoter for inviting me to such a big event.
How did you get a scar under your left eye?
Rickson: I got
it when he landed a punch on the first ground position. I
lost my eyesight temporarily then. I tried to make
time so that I could relax.
How was Funaki compared to Takada?
Rickson: I think
he was superior in terms of knowing where he should focus on or how he
should concentrate himself. I canft say anything
about his technique, but he is a great fighter at least in his
concentration and penetration.
about a mistake he did today?
donft think he did any mistake. The fight went on evenly. I
just could get into a little better position than him at a final moment.
I think thatfs all. I canft say myself
which was good or bad until I look back on it in the video.
Is there any special training you concentrated
on this time?
special. I just did the same training as I have been
doing so far. I think nobody can prepare for anything
to come which you canft predict. What kept in my
mind is to take an accurate and perfect reaction to any moment.
Do you continue to take up a challenge from Japanese fighters?
Personally I respect Japan, and I think Japanese fighters also deserve
to be respected. But it is up to a promoter who will
fight with me next. It is not my decision. There are many fighters in
the world who want to fight with me, but everything is up to a promoter.
However, I want to say one thing that I am very honored to
participate in the gColosseum 2000h It made me
take a new step forward. I wish next fight will be
also a good one to me.
How do you appreciate Sakuraba?
Rickson: In the
fight with Royce, I think he was physically in better condition than
Royce. But it was an even fight. I was not impressed
by his technique at all, but I want to appreciate his passion to the
fight. Both of them had a superiority at various
points, but Roycefs mistake in strategy resulted in a victory of
Sakuraba. The result itself is something to be
respected, but I didnft get any special impression from him.
Do you think you can easily defeat Sakuraba if you fight with
is nothing easy in fights. There is nothing 100% sure of winning.
It depends on the condition given for the fight or physical
Well, but we can hardly watch such a fight in vale tudo, which is
frequently held in the world today, that the mount position is taken so
easily. I wonder if it is because you are special or
Funaki didnft prepare enough for the fight. Which do you think is
both joined together, I think. (laughing among the family)
You are in a lot of sweat. Were you worried about that gaining
weight might affect your stamina?
Rickson: No, not
all. Maybe the spring weather in Japan made me sweat.
(laughing among the family)
You spoke in Portuguese at the winner interview on the ring.
Rickson: I was
proud that this event will be broadcast on Direct TV in Brazil.
I wanted to send a message to my home country. Of
course, this is Japan, so I should speak in Japanese. But
if there is a choice, English or Portuguese, I will choose Portuguese.
You said that todayfs fight went on evenly, but finally you
won. Could you tell me what is a difference between
you and other fighters?
Rickson: I think
it is a merit of age. (laughing among the family)
How long more are you going to be in fights?
Rickson: Oh, it
is a difficult question to answer. I like fighting
and I also like teaching jiu-jutsu. Jiu-jutsu itself
is a life to me. The spirit of jiu-jitsu is always pushing my back
saying gkeep on fightingh. But someday I will
come to the time to say gnoh, the time when I find it impossible
physically to do more training. It will be the time
for me to leave this world. But I canft say when it
will be. It is up to God, not me.
For more Rickson Gracie
interviews, see Interviews.
Other Rickson interviews on
(Athra Pt. 2)
(from Herois do Ringue)
(from Gracie DNA)
Rickson (from Tatame)
Rickson Choke documentary below. It's good.