Training StyleBueno’s normal day involves fitness training, boxing, and some limited ground work. He will usually train from 4-6 hours per day. He feels that his ground game is very strong so he doesn’t spend a lot of time working on it. His primary focus is improving his hand striking ability. He also doesn’t spend much time working on kicks, as he feels if he is close enough to kick someone, he is within takedown range and will go for that.
Bueno’s classic jiu-jitsu training came under Andre Pederneiras, but he has supplemented it over the years with boxing, wrestling training and also judo. He was judo black belt at a young age and won the Brazilian judo championship in his weight class as a child.
More InformationQ: When and why did you start training for fighting?
A: I love athletics of all kinds, but I love the strategy and competition of MMA because I can use my jiu-jitsu skills and also my boxing and wrestling skills.
Q: What ranks and titles do you hold?
A: I have 11 BJJ titles in various Brazilian tournaments, was undefeated at Abu Dhabi in 1998 before getting sick and being forced to withdraw by the ADCC medical staff, and I also have wins in IVC, Pride, and WVC.
Q: What is your favorite technique?
A: The knockout.
Q: How does it feel to fight in the UFC?
A: There will be no thrill like climbing into the Octagon and hearing Big John say, “Let’s get it on!” I have dreamed about this moment for many years and now I get to experience it. The UFC is a special event and I feel honored to be part of such a wonderful tradition.
Q: Do you have any heroes?
A: Superman! When I grow up I want to be just like him!
Q: Did you go to college? If so, where? What field of study? Got a degree?
A: Yes, I have attended law school but have interrupted it for my fighting career. My brother is a top lawyer in Brazil and I will one day probably follow in his footsteps.
Q: What do you feel is more important, making an exciting fight or winning?
A: I think you have to make an exciting fight, first and foremost. I’d rather lose exciting than win boring. Fans pay to see fights – so let’s fight! When I lost to Igor many said, “Why did you try to punch with him? You could have taken him down and submitted him in five minutes!” I know I could have done that. But I punched with Igor because I wanted to please the fans. But things happen in a fight. I got caught and the fight didn’t end the way I wanted to, but I still feel like I did the right thing. Afterwards, I got a lot of criticism because of him knocking me out – it definitely hurt my career. But these are the same people who yell at fighters who go to the ground and lay on each other for 10 minutes. So I felt the criticism was a little unbalanced.
Q: What is your biggest weapon in a fight?
A: I think it is my fighting spirit. I want to fight and I want to mix it up.
Q: What are your goals as a fighter in the UFC?
A: I want to win the belt. Isn’t that everyone’s goal? By my third fight in the UFC I would like a title shot. You have to think that way or you shouldn’t be fighting.
Q: Who has been your biggest influence in life and fighting?
A: Well, there is Andre Pederneiras, of course, who taught me jiu-jitsu. I also had an old-time submission wrestling coach in Rio who greatly influenced my ground style. He used to tell me that jiu-jitsu was no good because it was too loose. So he would drill me, Mario Sperry, Wallid Ismail, and others over and over again on having tight control. If someone didn’t do what he said then he would kick them out of the school. There were only a handful of students left after three months and I was one of them. I learned many thing from him.