All set for Jones: “Vitor trained guard attacks and lots of elbows”

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Gilbert Durinho weathering the storm on the ground in training with Vitor Belfort / Photo by Ray Alamo

Just a day away from the big UFC 152 show in Canada, Coach Gilbert Durinho had a chat with and discussed the technical details Vitor Belfort has been putting together for Jon Jones.

The Jiu-Jitsu black belt fielded a barrage of questions from our relentless Antonio Junior and Vitor Freitas, and here’s what he had to say:

GRACIEMAG: What can you tell us about Vitor’s training to try and surprise the champion Jon Jones this Saturday?

GILBERT DURINHO: We’re totally confident, and Vitor in particular is confident, focused and ready. We were taken in by Blackzilians team in Florida, and now he’s really hungry to win. This opportunity has really gotten Vitor revved up and put his confidence through the roof, which is a good thing. Jon Jones is the man to beat, of course, but I see four positives working in Vitor’s favor: his boxing, his Jiu-Jitsu, his speed and his experience. Those four aspects will make the difference come fight time. The way to go is high-speed boxing and Jiu-Jitsu to surprise attack him.

One of the most probable scenarios is Jon Jones getting the takedown. Did you guys work on that much?

Plenty. If it goes to the ground we’re prepared. Vitor has got his attacks from guard up to speed, and we’re working a lot on elbow defense and attacks. Vitor’s ready, just like in the old days.

What lessons have you learned from training with Belfort?

I learn a lot from him not just in training, but in my personal life as well. He’s a really mature guy—a father, husband, Christian. He’s someone who I admire a who’s inspired me a lot. He’s a role model to me on and off the mat. He’s my brother.

What’s your breakdown of Durinho before the “TUF Brazil” reality show and after the “TUF Brazil” reality show?

“TUF” was a marvelous experience, especially for helping my MMA career get started. I worked with a lot of both experienced and upstart fighters, participated in training, in the corner, in weight cutting; and throughout all the pressure I got to see results and witness mistakes. One of the big lessons I got while at the house came from learning without making mistakes, since I got to analyze and learn from other people’s mistakes.

You’re undefeated in MMA so far. What’s coming up next for you?

Thank God I’ve had four fights and all four were wins and all in the first round. These results are the fruit of not just my work, but that of my team: Vitor, Cezar Mutante, Pedro [Lima, manager], Casquinha and lots of others. My aim is to fight abroad now, but I’ll have to discuss what the next step will be with Vitor and Pedro. They take care of that part. I’m just a soldier, and my job is to be ready.

Will we still be seeing you competing in the gi?

My profession now is MMA but I love Jiu-Jitsu, and if there’s any room on my schedule and it won’t get in the way of my work, I’d really like to compete in the gi again.

UFC 152
Toronto, Canada
September 22, 2012

Jon Jones vs Vitor Belfort
Joseph Benavidez vs Demetrious Johnson
Michael Bisping vs Brian Stann
TJ Grant vs Evan Dunham
Matt Hamill vs Vladimir Matyushenko
Cub Swanson vs Charles do Bronx
Seth Baczynski vs Simeon Thoresen
Jimy Hettes vs Marcus Brimage
Igor Prokajac vs Vinny Magalhães
Mitch Gagnon vs Walel Watson
Charlie Brenneman vs Kyle Noke

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