MMAWeekly caught up with Murilo Bustamante in Japan, where Murilo discussed Paulo Filho, when he’ll be competing again, and the possibility of returning to action in front of an American audience.
Bustamante was in Japan cornering fellow Brazilian Top Team member Paulo Filho in his fight against Ryo Chonan. Filho remained undefeated in mixed martial arts competition with his submission victory over Chonan, and is ranked 3rd on MMAWeekly’s top ten world rankings of 183-185lb. fighters.
Bustamante has been consistently ranked in the top ten for years and was questioned about the possibility of facing his teammate and top three ranked fighter Paulo Filho sometime in the future. Murilo answered, “I hope not, but it’s a business. It could happen. It’s going to happen.”
Asked when he’ll be fighting again, Bustamante said, “I hope pretty soon. I want to fight this year. I hope to fight next Pride, in the States. I am excited this happened because I like fighting in the States. A long time ago I fought there. I’m excited to get back there and fight for the American fans.”
Murilo last fought on American soil at UFC 37: “High Impact” back in May of 2002 winning the Ultimate Fighting Championship Middleweight Title defeating Matt Lindland by Guillotine Choke.
Only time will tell if Murilo Bustamante will be on the Pride USA card, or if he and Paulo Filho will eventually have to face off despite being teammates. But having a former UFC Champion compete on the first American Pride event seems like a plausible scenario.