ADCC and BJJ World champion, Ronaldo Jacaré wants another title for his professional record. On August 21, the black belt gets into action for the third time on Strikeforce’s octagon and fights for the title on the middleweight division against Tim Kennedy, and he is ready for this battle. “The expectations are high, we’re training very hard… He’s extremely strong, takes everybody down”, compliments Jacaré. On an exclusive chat with TATAME, the Brazilian talked about his fight for the belt, his evolution since his first belt dispute, on Dream, and commented the next belt disputes of his team mates Rafael Feijão and Anderson Silva. “The guy (Chael Sonnen) is a good athlete, but Anderson will is training enough to beat him”, bets.
What is your expectation for this fight for the belt on Strikforce?
The expectations are high, we’ve been training hard… I’ve been training for a while and I was waiting for this fight for the belt would come soon, I was already working on it.
How is your preparation going, since this fight might have five rounds?
I’m ready to get there and fight for the belt. I’m not sure if it’ll last five rounds, but, in case it does, I’ll be prepared.
You will face a guy who has only been beaten twice in his career. What do you know about his game?
He’s extremely strong, takes everybody down, holds a good professional record… That’s what I know about him. He’s a guy who’s coming from several wins in a roll, so he also should be prepared to do a great fight, to become the champion. That’s why they chose him to dispute this belt with me.
He is indeed a good Wrestler, but you are an expert in Jiu-Jitsu. Do you believe he will try to bring you to the ground?
For sure. I believe he’ll keep doing his game, he’ll try to bring me down, but I’ll be prepared to defend myself while standing and bring him down in order to use my Jiu-Jitsu to try to submit him.
You got the change to fight for the belt on Dream and did not had a good result back then. Do you consider yourself more mature for this belt dispute?
I’m cool. Dream was a good learning for me and I fought here on Strikeforce to get this chance to fight for the belt, beating two great fighters, two former champions, and now I’ll have my chance for the belt.
Chuck Liddell is from Tim Kennedy’s team. Do you think this could be an advantage for him, having a former champion of Liddell’s level as a support and probable corner?
That won’t help him if he’s not prepared to get there and fight for the belt. The fact that Chuck Liddell trains along with him will not change a thing during the bout. He can be supportive on the trainings, but it all depends on the fighter. It doesn’t matter if he has the guy as his coach and he can’t do a thing up there.
On that same night, Rafael Feijão, your training and team partner, will have his chance for the belt on his division. How is this expectation of you two training together to get your own Strikeforce’s belt on the same evening?
The team is united and strong, we’re trying to reach our limits during the trainings, (Josuel) Distak leading the trainings, Rogerão (Camões) working on the physical part, so we’re very focus for this event. Me, Feijão and X-Gym are focused on these two belts.
How do you think this bout between Feijão and King Mo Lawal will be like?
I believe there’ll be a lot of punches, but I hope that Feijão, who’s my training partner, wins, because he’s such a nice person. It’ll be a very busy standing fight, if it depends on Feijão. I hope he get of there with the win.
King Mo is also very good on takedowns and he proved that on his last fight. Do you think he will try to bring Feijão to the ground? How this part of Feijão’s game is? Is he training that?
Everybody has been training together: me, André Galvão, Feijão and great guys who are coming from Niterói to train and help us. Everybody is together and I can tell that Feijão’s ground game is very good. He’s been doing trainings on the ground too and he’s getting better and better, he’s surprising us. He’s improving a lot.
Anderson trains with you guys, but he is doing his preparation for his next bout on the United States. How do you think this next belt defend he has ahead of him will end like, when he will face Chael Sonnen?
I hope that Anderson is in a good phase and focused, so that he can do a great fight. People are saying that, for sure, he’ll make it a great show. For what I’ve heard, he’s prepared to it, he’ll make a good presentation for everybody to watch it, a fighting show. He’ll do a good job, and for sure, he’ll get this win.
Chael Sonnen has been saying craps. You have been through a similar situation when you confronted Jason Miller, who is also a teaser. What changes in the mind of an athlete when the guy starts saying things like that? Does it change much?
For me, it doesn’t change anything. If the guy is quiet or talkative, it doesn’t matter to me. You have to be a fighter, go there and fight. What matters is the day of the bout, you don’t need to say things first. I believe that doesn’t change anything if the guy likes to talk or not, what matters is what he can do inside that cage, that octagon. But I don’t worry about it. I don’t know how it’ll be for Anderson, but I believe it won’t change much. I believe it’ll be the same for him too.
Do you believe Sonnen is good enough to beat Anderson?
The guy is a good athlete, but Anderson will be prepared to beat him.