Interview: ATT's Marcus Aurelio
Submitted by: Denis Martins
Posted On 03/12/2004
Taken from Abu Dhabi website.
He is one of the submission masters from ATT's camp. He has a impressive 10-1-0 record in MMA, with 7 submissions!! Recently, he won the belt of the ZST GP with 3 victories by tapout in 4 fights, but who is he?
This is the question that we satart answering at ADCC News, as we introduce the sensational Marcus Aurelio with a huge interview below. Enjoy!
Denis Martins: Can you introduce yourself to the fans? Marcus Aurelio: Okay, my full name is Marcus Aurelio de Carvalho Martins (a.k.a. Maximus). My main BJJ titles are Brazilian Champion, 2x Pan American Champion, 5x State Champion and 3rd in Mundials. In MMA/NHB, I am the HOOKnSHOOT Lightweight Champion, the Ring of Fury Lightweight Champion, the AFC Lightweight Champion and the ZST Grand Prix Champion. I am 155lbs (70 kg) and 5'10 (176 cm). I am 30 years old and was born in Fortaleza, Ceara - Brazil. I now live in Boca Raton, Florida in the USA. I got my black belt from Master 'Sazinho' in Ceara and train in Florida with the American Top Team.
Denis Martins: How did the opportunity to fight in the ZST GP come about? Marcus Aurelio: The ZST organization made a proposal and the ATT camp contacted them and offered me to represent ATT in the ZST GP.
Denis Martins: What was your first impression of the event, given it has special rules? Marcus Aurelio: It is a high level event. This was a great opportunity since ZST has a following from all the fans who had enjoyed the now defunct RINGS events. Many of the fighters from RINGS have had an impact on the world of MMA.
Denis Martins: What problems did you encounter adapting your game for this event? Marcus Aurelio: My adaptation to the rules (no punching on the ground) was easy because it allowed me to show my ground fighting techniques. I also worked on the speed of my submission applications and following through with the technique when we hit the ground.
Denis Martins: ZST had another interesting rule; when the fight was on the ground, the fighter who was on the bottom could not close his guard. Was this difficult for you? Marcus Aurelio: I had no problems with this because I have developed some positions that allow me to free myself from the open guard. However, I could not work out a way to keep my opponent in my guard but nevertheless I made my game-plan work perfectly.
Denis Martins: When this rule was announced, did you notice the other fighters' reactions? Marcus Aurelio: I noticed they did not like it. I think it was because if you do not train Jiu Jitsu to fight, the open guard is much too complicated.
Denis Martins: Did you try to emulate Antonio Rodrigo 'Minotauro' Nogueira in the RINGS King of Kings 2000 tournament in your fights in ZST? Marcus Aurelio: 'Minotauro' Nogueira is an inspiration for any fighter, but especially for Jiu Jitsu fighters and it was no different for me.
Denis Martins: You beat TAKUMI in the opening stage bout of the tournament and the Japanese fans were impressed with your technique. Did you realize it? Marcus Aurelio: Yes. When I beat Takumi via armbar, they started to compare me to 'Minotauro' and that made me very proud. 'Minotauro' is the most technical MMA fighter in the world as well as a very nice guy.
Denis Martins: You fought Masakazu Imanari in the quarterfinal bout of the tournament but you were not able to submit him. Do you think he was stalling
in the fight? Marcus Aurelio: He is an excellent athlete but I had a bigger
goal that night. I wanted to win the whole tournament. I feel if we fought again in a single match I would submit him.
Interview: ATT's Marcus Aurelio
Denis Martins: What did you think of him as a fighter? He had a very mysterious way about him and unorthodox techniques. Marcus Aurelio: Like I said he is a great athlete and had very good technique on the mat. He would always grab your legs and look for heel hooks, leg locks and kneebars. He submitted Jorge Gurgel with a quick heelhook in the opening stage. I knew I needed to be careful with him but his game was not conventional. I believe our Jiu Jitsu is more refined than his with more variations on the moves and positions.
Denis Martins: Your semifinal tournament bout was against Remigijus Morkevicius. What was your strategy against him given his fast and furious style? Marcus Aurelio: He is a very dangerous fighter and an excellent striker and athlete. However I had confidence in my technique and preparation. I train Boxing and Muay Thai too. I knew how to block his attacks and take him down or put him in guard. So I pulled him to guard as my corner instructed me to do and submitted him with a triangle choke.
Denis Martins: The final bout with UFC veteran Rich 'No Love' Clementi was the easiest of the whole tourney for you. What happened that forced Clementi to tap out for no apparent reason? Marcus Aurelio: I went to the ring very confident. I knew we would exchange blows on the feet and that the key to victory was taking him down. I hit him in the face and I knew he felt the strike so I took him down and he started bleeding. I thought the blood was coming from a broken nose but actually I broke his orbital bone around his eye and the blood was just coming out his nose. Once I passed his guard, he tapped out. It was all very quick. Clementi is a nice person and a good fighter but I knew I had a good stamina and the better conditioning to win.
Denis Martins: Did he ask for a rematch? Marcus Aurelio: No. I do not know anything about that but he is a fighter who I like and admire. However I am ready to fight anyone in the 155 lb category. If a rematch against Clementi is beneficial to my career, I will fight him because this is business and not personal.
Denis Martins: Do you feel you were in trouble in any of the three tournament fights? Marcus Aurelio: I did not feel I was in danger of losing any of the fights. I was very well trained.
Denis Martins: Do you intend to fight in ZST again? Marcus Aurelio: I do. My
next fight may be against Kotani in May. We are negotiating the purse.
Denis Martins: You showed you were a superb grappler in your MMA fights but what skills do you train on the feet? Marcus Aurelio: Here at ATT, we have very good Muay Thai and Boxing instruction as well as Wrestling. Of course my roots lie in Jiu Jitsu but I am ready for anything.
Denis Martins: When did you begin training different styles of Jiu Jitsu? Marcus Aurelio: When I started training for MMA.
Denis Martins: Do you have any problems when training striking? Marcus Aurelio: I did not look at it as a problem. I looked at it as adapting my game and learning to use new tools. This is the way I become a complete MMA fighter.
Denis Martins: Who invited you to join ATT? Marcus Aurelio: The pillars of
the team; Marcelo and 'Conan', the Silveira brothers. I have been with them since beginning 2 years ago.
Denis Martins: Where did the nickname 'Maximus' come from? Marcus Aurelio:
It came from the crowds that watch my fights. They gave it to me because my name (Marcus Aurelio) is similar to the commander of the Roman troops (Maximus).
Denis Martins: You possess a very good MMA record with 11 fights and only 1 defeat, a loss to Antonio McKee in the King of the Cage 27. Do you intend to have a rematch? Marcus Aurelio: Those who saw the fight know it was not a fair outcome. I do not care about that fight. McKee knows who won that fight. As for a rematch, he is not qualified to face me again.
I wanted to read the rest, but I'm too lazy to find the link for the Abu Dhabi website...hehe
Denis Martins: Besides the ZST fight in May, whatelse do you have planned for 2004? Marcus Aurelio: To train more and win all of my fights. I want to get my name out there and be recognized as the best lightweight fighter on the planet. My goal is to fight in Pride Bushido this year.
Denis Martins: Is there anything else you would like to say? Marcus Aurelio: I would like to thank God for all of the opportunities He gave me in this life; my family; my coaches (Ricardo Liborio, 'Conan' and Marcus Silveira), who have always prepared me very well for my fights and are the reason I am where I am right now; and to all my friends and teammates at ATT. I also want to thank my friend and sponsor who does not want to be mentioned and of course the fans. Without the fans we are nothing. The biggest challenge in my life is not a fight. This is my way of life. Each day I try to become a better person and support those who need my help.
Denis Martins: Thank you for your time and good luck in your future
fights. Marcus Aurelio: Thank you for the opportunity
ttt for the man, Marcus Aurelio.
great interview, Marcus was something to watch in the ZST GP...A fight against Kotani should be excellent.
marcus is a great guy and a killing machine!
Marcus Aurelio posing after winning the ZST Grand Prix Lightweight Tournament in Japan.