Fight week has come once again for Bruno Silva, which means his least favorite part of being a fighter is over, for now: being in camp.
“I don’t like to do training camps. I don’t do it,” Silva said, laughing over the phone with members from the UFC’s Brazil office in São Paulo. “I train all year round and when I book a fight, I just adjust some things; I don’t stop training only to go back when I get a fight.
“When I get a fight, I’m already at 70% or 80% of my peak shape. I just change my ‘chip.’ I train harder and only adjust a few details and my diet. The diet gets a little more strict, but I don’t mind it. If it were up to me, I would fight every two or three months.”
It’s a change of pace from our last interview with the middleweight, who sat and stared in awe at the Octagon in behind him until the first question was asked ahead of his long-awaited debut, which had been delayed by two years.
“Blindado” likely got all of his UFC jitters out of the way last time, although he wasn’t in the Octagon for long, defeating fellow countryman Wellington Turman by a savage ground-and-pound TKO with 15 seconds to go in the first round.
“I wasn’t 100% satisfied because I didn’t do half of what I trained, but I was really happy for my win,” he said. “I needed that because I was in a really tough spot. I hadn’t fought in a while, so I was happy about the knockout. Anyone who follows my career knows that I always go for it, that I try to end my fights before the third round. I was able to get a knockout and left an impression in my UFC debut.”
It was an impression that got Silva another call to the Octagon just four months later, but also got him attention from fans — propelling him from being the “other Bruno Silva” on the UFC roster to very much a fighter of his own.
“I think I gained more than 6,000 followers on social media after that fight. The visibility you get is much higher in the UFC. It’s the biggest promotion in the world, so the world starts to get to know you better. You show a lot more of your style and my fight was really talked about because of how it happened. Few people think you can knock someone out from that ground-and-pound position, and I was able to do it.”
Next up for the Brazilian is Andrew Sanchez, looking to bounce back from his loss to Makhmud Muradov earlier this year. And while “El Dirte” certainly has seniority over Silva when it comes to fighting inside the Octagon, don’t look past the experience gained in Silva’s 26 professional fights — or the strategy he carries into every fight.
“I can tell you all about my strategy: throw hands,” the 32-year-old said, laughing again. “I don’t have any other strategy, ever, for any opponent. I adapt while the fight goes on. My camp is 100% focused on me, no one else. I don’t watch any tape on my opponent. I don’t create this ghost and idolize it; I just have to focus on myself. It’s my best against his best, and may the best one win. But I’m going to end the fight, and I hope he thinks the same way as I do. He either finishes me, or I finish him.”
Simple enough. And despite only having one UFC walk in the bag and truly understanding what’s at stake in the fight game, Silva carries himself in a cool and collected manner.
“I’m very calm, but I’m also very aggressive when I have to be. I never promise a time to win, because for me, the fight starts when I smell blood. If I see any fragility in his position or in his eyes, I’ll attack.”