“The Phenom” Vitor Belfort turned 40 in April. He’s in the twilight of his career, but is still reinventing himself. For his UFC 212 training camp, Belfort traveled to Montreal, Canada to train at the Tristar Gym with coach Firas Zahabi. Although the fight camp was shorter than he would have liked, Belfort earned a decision win over Nate Marquardt on June 3.
“It was a good move for me to go to Tristar. I want to thank Firas Zahabi and the whole team for receiving me there,” said belfort during the UFC 212 post-fight press conference. “It was good. It paid off. I went back to the principles of the sport to just stay away from all of the distractions.”
Belfort has mainly been known as a striker with fast hands and knockout power, but in 2013 he added kicks to his offensive skill set and scored three consecutive head kick finishes. He plans to continue to evolve his game and keep the opponents guessing in the future.
“We are reinventing Vitor Belfort again. We are changing a lot of things in my game, a lot of things that I was doing wrong,” he said. “We had more power in the third round than in the first round, so that’s a good thing.
“That’s something that’s never happened. If you study my career, I finish people in the first round, second round. People aren’t used to seeing that, so that’s something new. That’s good because that’s going to give me an edge to keep pushing people. They don’t know what’s going to happen.”
Former welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre has trained at Tristar for most of his career. He helped Belfort prepare for his UFC 212 bout against Marquardt, and Belfort said that “Rush” taught him a few things.
“We’re coming with takedowns. Georges is teaching me all of his takedowns, so we’re coming with a lot of new stuff. A lot of new things are about to come,” he said. “At Tristar everyone helped me. Not only Georges, but everyone who was there. Georges is a guy who was there. He’s a very simple man. He’s teaching and sharing and learning. For me, it was very good being there with him.”