Roger Gracie wraps up a week of training with UFC champion George Saint-Pierre this weekend in London, England. All set for his Strikeforce outing with Trevor Prangley on the 29th, his fourth MMA fight, Roger answered GRACIEMAG.com’s call and spoke (softly, as his son Tristan was nearby) of his training rhythm, his opponent, and what he learned from the best welterweight in the world.
How was your New Year’s?
It was chill. Maybe even too chill. Now there are three weeks left till the fight, so I spent New Year’s Eve resting, training, and thinking about my Strikeforce fight.
The strategy is the same for anybody”
Have you seen your opponents fights or will you wait to watch the tapes with Renzo, in New York?
I’ve seen some of them, I could get a sense of what type of fighter he is and put together a fight plan in my head. But the strategy for MMA, in the end, ends up being the same for anyone I face: get my hands on the dude, take him down, and not let him get out until I submit him.
What’s the main thing you learned from GSP?
Training with him is great. We trained gi and no-gi. On the ground the weight difference is a bit awkward. We did some cool punch, kick, and take down training, and he’s a specialist in that. He gave me some key pointers that will help a lot in my fight, finer details that changed my game.
What’s the plan now?
Tomorrow we do the last training session, Bráulio’s coming too. Ten days from now I’ll head to New York for the final stretch in training, and then I go to California for the event. Now’s the time to sharpen up the final facets of my standup game, takedowns, and then bring down the pace. I’m not training that much grappling specifically for this fight, since I’m already sharp in that department, I’m just going to show my Jiu-Jitsu when the day comes.