Jacare: I’ll have no problem stopping fighting, teaching pays just as much
Ronaldo Souza had hoped to beat Luke Rockhold more spectacularly than Yoel Romero and Chris Weidman beat each other, and thus get a title shot. Then Romero won spectacularly and Jacare got hurt; for his trouble, the Cuban Olympian get to watch division champion Michael Bisping next defend vs. GSP.
Souza fought and beat Tim Boetsch in February, and called for rematches with Rockhold and Romero. Instead, he fights Robert Whittaker at UFC on Fox 24 on April 15. During a recent media scrum in Rio de Janeiro, Jacare said
“Oh, man, I’m motivated in fighting,” said Souza as transcribed by Guilherme Cruz for MMA Fighting. “That doesn’t demotivate me at all. I’m motivated by the challenge that my opponent brings. The belt is the consequence. I’m a believer in God, everybody knows that. When I’m choosing my fight, I put a knee on the ground and ask for God to choose a fight for me, and it’s happening.”
“I’m happy to be fighting. But I have no problem stopping fighting. I stopped competing in jiu-jitsu in 2005 when I was at the top of my career, and if I think it’s too much for me, that I’m full of it, I can stop fighting. That’s it. I can open my own gym, make as much money as I make fighting, and be happy. I have this dream of having my own gym, so I have no problem stopping fighting.”
“No, it doesn’t go through my mind to stop fighting, but if I get full of it, I can stop fighting. I can teach. I have this leverage. And I’m sure, I’ll have a lot of students. Do the math, 400 students training with me.”
“I’m hungry to fight, to do my job. That’s not something that affects me. Everybody sees I’m excited, I want fights. Unfortunately, it’s not the fight I wanted. I wanted Luke, everybody knows that. Everybody knows I asked for Romero too. I’ll tell you the truth, the only guy in the UFC I truly don’t want to fight is Mousasi because he’s trouble.
“I fought him, the truth is that I was in a good day, and he wasn’t in a good day, and he will show that to everyone when he fights Chris Weidman. You’ll see how good Mousasi is. But the criteria with me is completely different.
“When we were coming up, everyone together, they said Jacare didn’t fight tough opponents, Luke Rockhold fought The Barbarian, who I just fought, and demolished him. Man, I also demolished him, but now that I fought him he’s nothing? Jacare fought Belfort in the end of his career, but how about Lyoto? He was bad when he got demolished by Luke and Romero. They use a different criteria when it’s me. When it’s me winning, they come up with excuses.
“Lyoto defeated Mousasi and fought for the belt. I not only defeat Mousasi, but I did it convincingly, submitted him, and didn’t fight for the belt. Those are things that happen to me, and I think it’s weird. I don’t sell (pay-per-views)? Cut the bulls***. You don’t know what you’re talking about.”
Interview is Brazilian language, but click on CC for translation.