The Brazilian Beat:
Paulo Filho is back in action,
Ninja’s brother debuts with KO!
While the results of the recent PRIDE Shockwave are still the subject of talk in the NHB circles in Brazil, primary focus has already shifted to upcoming events. September promises to be a busy month for all the camps with UFC 39, PRIDE 22, plus the Deep event next weekend. Teams like the Brazilian Top Team have a lot of fighters already in Japan training and getting ready to compete, and others are entering their final stages of their preparation. FCF will keep a close eye on all the camps during this month, because September will surely keep the beat going for a long time…
- The PRIDE Heavyweight champion, Rodrigo "Minotauro" Nogueira is still in Japan after his historic victory over Bob Sapp at Shockwave. Minotauro stayed in Japan to help his brother Rogerio in the final preparation for his fight against Tsuyoshi Kohsaka at Deep this weekend. After the fight, the champion will be going to Holland where he will train Muay Thai with Peter Aerts once again, and take the opportunity to continue his physiotherapy treatment. Minotauro will also be attending PRIDE 22 as a guest in late September.
- As things never quiet down at the Brazilian Top Team, Mario Sperry is training hard for his PRIDE 22 appearance against Russian fighter Andrei Kopylov. "The Zen Machine" is sharpening his Muay Thai skills and most of all training a lot of ground work with the heavier Top Team members, like Fabiano Scherner, since Kopylov is heavier than Mario and is a good ground fighter.
- Another BTT member who is likely fighting at PRIDE 22 is Paulo Filho. Filho is already feeling recovered from the knee injury that prevented him from competing at PRIDE 21and is preparing for his long awaited PRIDE debut. His opponent is likely to be Japanese MMA journeyman Akira Shoji.
- Vitor Belfort is also training hard in Sao Paulo for his November UFC appearance. Belfort has been appearing on some Brazilian TV shows lately along with his girlfriend Joana Prado, but he will stop the TV appearances as fight time approaches and will concentrate on nothing but his training. "The Phenom" told FCF he is willing to enter this fight in the best shape of his life and he is already preparing with Vladimir Matyushenko in mind as his probable opponent.
- After Vanderlei Silva’s fight at Shockwave things are busy again for the Chute Boxe team. Pele is training hard in preparation for his upcoming fight at MECA 7 in November, and looking for a shot at the UFC, while Anderson Silva and Murilo Ninja are in great shape looking for a likely appearance at PRIDE 22. Although no names have been suggested to the Chute Boxe camp, Anderson would welcome a chance to compete against Dan Henderson, who is rumored to be his likely opponent, while Ninja still hopes for a shot at Ricardo Arona.
- Speaking of Vanderlei Silva, the PRIDE Middleweight champion is going on vacation to the Northeast of Brazil this week. After lots of training for Shockwave, with opponents changing all the time, the "Axe Murderer" is finally taking a well-deserved break to take his wife and daughter on vacation, and will be back in two weeks. Therefore, chances are null that Vanderlei Silva will be fighting at PRIDE 22, but he promised FCF that after this break he will be back better than ever.
- On August 24th the latest edition of Storm Muay Thai delivered lots of action in Curitiba, in the best "Chute Boxe-style." The highlight of the night was Murilo Ninja’s brother, Mauricio "Shogun’s", debut. He won his fight impressively by knockout in the second round, and showcased some serious Muay Thai skills. Mauricio will also be debuting in NHB at the next MECA in November. Other important moments of the last Storm were Chute Boxe fighter Marlon Matias winning once again and continuing his path to his future NHB career, and the surprising loss of NHB veteran Osmar from the Chute Boxe team to Everton by decision. The next edition of Storm promises to be great and is likely to be held in the end of September.
- UFC Middleweight champion Murilo Bustamante is in Japan right now, also helping in the preparation of the BTT members who will be fighting at Deep this weekend. Bustamante has been responsible for Fabio Mello’s training for years, and will be cornering him on his Deep debut, as well as Rogerio Nogueira and Gilson Ferreira. Murilo still didn’t sign a new contract with the UFC and his future is still a mystery at this point.