Renato Babalu doesn’t fight since last December, and can’t wait to return to Strikeforce’s cage. Former light heavyweight champion of the organization, the black belt talked to TATAME on the backstage of UFC Rio, event on which he helped Mauricio Shogun, and revealed he hopes to know about his next fight this Saturday (10th), date on which the next edition of Strikeforce will happen.
“I’m just waiting this event of the 10th goes by so that I know when I’ll fight again”, tells, explaining how he’s spending his days with no scheduled bouts. “Meanwhile, I’m helping Rafael (Cordeiro) on the trainings, I have my gym, Gracie Barra Cerritos, where I train my student, I have my family… I have a big group of kids I like to teach”.
On his career, Renato has fought 45 times. Fighting in events like UFC, Cage Rage, Rings, Jungle Fight and IVC, the fighter has fought some of the biggest names on the history of the sport, like Mauricio Shogun, Fedor Emelianenko, Dan Henderson, Chuck Liddell and Jose Landi-Jons, among others.
And he has also fought the controversy Chael Sonnen, and believes his days on the rings are reaching an inevitable end.
“For now I’m more an athlete than a teacher, but I’ll change once I stop fighting, and I’m getting there. Actually, now I’m like a novice teacher”, reveals Babalu, pointing out the main reason for that conclusion: “there’re too many injuries (laughs)”.
On his first night as a professional, he defeated three opponents at “Desafio Rio de Janeiro vs. Sao Paulo de Vale Tudo”. On the fighter’s opinion, who’ll complete 14 years of career next September 27th, now he has other motivations.
“Adrenaline is addictive, but after you start enjoying teaching, seeing other people learning, improving, mainly on the work I do with the kids… Sometimes kids don’t have self-confidence, but after starting training Jiu-Jitsu it changes, and it’s so rewarding”, explains.