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Bad blood: Patricio Pitbull, Pedro Carvalho interview each other before Bellator 241

It’s no secret Patricio Freire and Pedro Carvalho don’t like each other. Very soon, they’’ll have the opportunity to settle their rivalry with fists.

“Pitbull” and Carvalho meet Friday night in the main event of Bellator 241 in Uncasville. Before their highly anticipated 145-pound tournament bout, MMA Fighting invited the featherweights to interview each other.

Freire, the company’s two-division king, got past Juan Archuleta in his first grand prix appearance just four months after dispatching Michael Chandler in 61 seconds to claim the lightweight gold.

Carvalho, meanwhile, improved to 4-0 in Bellator with a second-round victory over Sam Sicilia last September, which marked his third finish in a row under the company’s banner.

Check out the interviews below.

Patricio Pitbull asks Pedro Carvalho

Pitbull: You have 14 fights and haven’t fought a top-level fighter yet. You had trouble in your last fight against Sam Sicilia, and he has lost many fights recently. Where did you get this idea that you can beat me?

Carvalho: First, I don’t know where he got the idea that I never fought a tough guy when his brother struggled to beat Derek Campos, and I beat him in two minutes. Second, I don’t understand why he thinks I had trouble against Sam Sicilia. Him thinking like this only gives me a stronger sense that he doesn’t know what he’s gotten himself into. These questions make me happy, I will show him why I’m so confident on March 13 when I show him how I’m going to beat him.

Pitbull: By showing countless Portuguese fans being disrespectful toward my country, you attacked me saying that I’m victimizing myself, and even tried to throw Brazilians against the Portuguese. Aren’t you ashamed of creating lies for the public just weeks before the fight? How can you look at yourself in the mirror? This is not the first time my opponents have twisted my attitude, and they all paid for it and got embarrassed.

Pedro Carvalho is 4-0 in Bellator.

Carvalho: Why is he threatening me at this time? We’re going to meet each other in the cage. He truly has victimized himself, because he started putting stories from some guys on his Instagram – you know, stuff where guys are saying nasty sh*t on social media. I’ve had Brazilian lads [saying bad things], especially from his team, and I didn’t say anything. He came out on social media saying, ‘The Portuguese did this, the Portuguese did that…’ He even said that me and my friends were commenting. If this isn’t victimizing yourself, I don’t know what is. He’s not behaving like a man, and especially, he’s not behaving like a champion. A champion keeps his mouth shut and goes out there and proves himself. That’s what a true champion does. He’s trying to make it out like SBG are the bad guys and he’s the hero. I’ll stick to what I said: He’s trying to victimize himself, and on March 13, he’ll truly be a victim.

Pitbull: Why are you and your team insisting that I’m underestimating you, that I picked you because you’re the easiest opponent? I bet your coaches tell you that every day, but in our first press conference I corrected you, saying that I would have picked someone else if that was my criteria. You really need that to believe in yourself?

Carvalho: I don’t know what world he’s living in. I’ve never said that I think that he underestimates me. Actually, if you go to any interview that I’ve done – and I’ve been asked this question many times about why he picked me – [and] I’ve always said that I don’t know and I don’t care. It could be because he underestimates me, or it could because he wants the SBG feud. That’s what I believe: He wants to make his team’s name at the expense of SBG’s. I’ve never said in any place that I think he underestimates me, because the bottom line is, that doesn’t matter. What matters is, the belt is going to be right there waiting for me, shining, and I’m going to bring Pitbull’s head back to Ireland. The rest means nothing.

Pitbull: I have as many knockouts as you have wins. What makes you think I won’t stand and trade with you? You talk like you’re so confident, but how do you explain this fear of getting dominated by me for 25 minutes? There are several messages from you on Twitter begging me not to use my grappling.

Carvalho: Look, he has a lot of fights, this and that, blah, blah, blah. Okay, that’s facts, but name a high level striker that he’s faced. Who? He’s finished really good MMA guys, but I’ve never saw one guy he faced where I said, ‘Wow, that’s a really high-level striker.’ Never. He’s fought really good wrestlers, [and] before that, he fought some other high-level guys. But high-level strikers that can make him look like an amateur, like I can make him look? He’s never faced someone like that. He’s never been asked those types of tricky questions. I know that he’s not going to trade with me. He’ll probably try, but then a few minutes later he’ll try to grapple with me and do what he does ever single fight: make it boring and win on points. Everyone can see he started his career as a true Pitbull, and after he became an experienced guy and a champion, he became a point fighter. That’s what he is now, a boring point fighter.

Pitbull: How do you want to lose? Beat up and submitted like your idol Conor, or with your chin cracked early?

Carvalho: These guys, him and his brother, they are the biggest SBG and Conor fans in the world. These are the ones that are constantly mentioning it. So listen, Patricio, I’m going to be your friend and I’m going to bring you a signed SBG shirt that you can put in your gym!

Pedro Carvalho asks Patricio Pitbull

Carvalho: How many rounds do you think you’re going to last?

Pitbull: First of all, you’ve never fought five rounds. You’re f*cked, brother. You’re getting into an ocean you’ve never been in your life. Shut up and stop talking sh*t.

Carvalho: What are your plans for after you lose the featherweight belt to me?

Pitbull: Keep dreaming, doll.

Carvalho: How much do you regret picking the fight against me? I just would like to take this chance to thank you for sparing me the time and not making me wait until the semifinal or final to become world champion.

Freire holds two belts in Bellator.
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Pitbull: Oh my God…what am I supposed to answer to a guy like this? Honestly? This guy is crazy. He swallowed all the crap Conor McGregor said his entire life. Conor McGregor is not that guy anymore. He has changed the way he behaves, and these SBG guys keep talking sh*t. I don’t know what this...he’s crazy. He needs a psychiatrist.

He was in the right place at the right time. Ever since before the first fight, when I was asked the date I would choose I said March because of my rest and recovery. I think (Daniel) Weichel is the oldest fighter in this [grand prix], and I’m right next after him. I’m in this sport since 2003, and I need rest. I have my injuries, I need to recover, enjoy my family. I had a tough fight, 25 minutes of fighting, and I told everyone I would choose March.

Pedro Carvalho and Darrion Caldwell were on that date. Caldwell was not an option for me, even with his trash talk, because he had just lost twice to a flyweight, so I don’t think he deserved to fight for the featherweight title. The second guy there was Pedro Carvalho, who wasn’t ranked enough to fight for the title, but had a few wins in the division and made more sense for me, so I picked him.

He doesn’t think he’s capable (of defeating me). I had to correct him in the press conference, when we had the first faceoff and he said I picked him because I thought he was the easiest one. I never thought or said that.

Carvalho: Why are you investing so much of your time training against a southpaw and practicing a counter for my left body kick? I’m orthodox and if I have to land that left kick I will make it land anyway.

Pitbull: He’s so stupid. He’s been fighting his last four fights as an orthodox, but switched stances and threw left kicks. I don’t know why he’s saying that. I know the Portuguese are dumb, but that’s too much, right?

Carvalho: Stop victimizing yourself by creating a dynamic between Portugal and Brazil. Don’t you think you should behave like a champion and a man and set an example instead of behaving like a crying baby?

Pitbull: That’s a fact, he can’t say I’m victimizing myself. Just go to my social media and see that 95 percent of the comments by Portuguese fans are talking sh*t. Most of them are disrespectful, so I did expose them because Brazilians have to be with me in this war. There’s nothing to do with being a man or victimizing myself. That’s a fact and that’s happening, it’s no joke.

I’m very focused on fight night. It does give me extra fuel in training, but on fight night, he can talk all he wants. He can try to be like Conor McGregor. He can walk, talk and dress like him, but he’s no Conor McGregor. Even if he was, he’d still get his ass kicked.

Who will leave Bellator 241 with the featherweight championship?
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

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