On Tuesday I met up with Gilbert “The Pitbull” Jimenez to do this interview. What I see in Gilbert is the same thing I see in all of the fighters that are recognized on TexasFighting.com and that’s a burning desire to be the best and a determination to win! Enjoy the interview!
Texas Fighting: First off, are you a family man?
Gilbert Jimenez: Yes, I’m married with 3 boys.
Texas Fighting: How old are the boys?
Gilbert Jimenez: 14, 12 and 8.
Texas Fighting: If they ever wanted to train in mma would you be okay with that?
Gilbert Jimenez: Absolutely, my 14 year old trains with me. He’s really good at Jujitsu. He’s still a white belt but I show him a few things here and there. He’s tapped out quite a few people. He’ll be getting into wrestling in highschool to prepare him for mma.
Texas Fighting: What interests you about fighting and when did you start fighting?
Gilbert Jimenez: I’ve always been a rough house type of guy and have been around crazy sh!@ all my life. I’m from “the street” and don’t come from a real nice neighborhood so, I’ve always gotten into tons of sh!@. This is not what everyone wants to hear but this is how I grew up. Living in the south side of San Antonio often had me getting my a@@ kicked or kicking some a@@ every day. It’s rough out there but mixed martial arts has allowed me to channel it in a way where I can benefit from it. It’s kept me out of trouble and, oddly enough, out of jail – most of the time. (chuckling under his breath)
Texas Fighting: Is Mixed Martial Arts your full time gig?
Gilbert Jimenez: Yes, I’ve sacrificed a lot the past year and a half and committed myself 100% to training. Ever since I did that I’ve been on a pretty good streak. I’ve got two titles so I’m pretty proud of that.
Texas Fighting: How long ago did you start training in Mixed Martial Arts?
Gilbert Jimenez: Let’s see… Brazilian Jujitsu, MMA and Muay Thai… about two and a half years.
Texas Fighting: Earlier you mentioned that you had a rougher start growing up, how old were you when you got into your first fist fight?
Gilbert Jimenez: I was probably about 9 years old at the time. I would get my a@@ kicked every day. This bully use to always pick on me, he’d always just fu*# with me. I really hated it, this is so weird because nobody knows this about me, but that actually brought out the pitbull in me – so to speak. One day I had about all I could take and the next day I planned it out and ended up beating his a@@ with a 2×4. I was a young elementary kid and he was some high school drop out. I got such a rush beating up this giant fu*# that I decided that I’d never take sh!@ from anyone again. From there I got into any sh!* I could and just loved it!
Texas Fighting: Now Gilbert, you’re a great street fighter but have you ever lost a street fight?
Gilbert Jimenez: Oh hell yeah! Being that I’m the kinda person that doesn’t back down from sh!@ I’ve had my fair share of beat downs as well as giving them. Whether it’s one guy or ten guys I still look at it the exact same way. I look at it this way, if I have a problem I don’t care how many of you there are, somebody’s gonna get knocked the fu*# out. Now sometimes if it was more than five it was often me that was getting beat down but I didn’t care. I made sure to at least hurt one of the guys, usually the biggest, bad enough to where they’d remember they’re not dealing with just some regular dude. If they fu*# with me someones going to get hurt!
Texas Fighting: (chuckling) Nice!
Texas Fighting: So you started two and a half years ago training in MMA, when did you have your first amateur mma fight?
Gilbert Jimenez: My first fight was in September of 2007 and my opponent was Phil Detrizack from the Grapplers Domain and I ended up taking that win by decision with only four months of training under my belt.
Texas Fighting: What is your amateur record right now?
Gilbert Jimenez: 7-2
Texas Fighting: Were the losses in the beginning of your career?
Gilbert Jimenez: No, actually, one of the losses was from a kid by the name of Luis Luna from Odessa Texas – big name in the Texas circuit so look out for him. The guy is an awesome fighter.
Gilbert Jimenez: He came out to bang, I came out to bang. The problem was that I underestimated the kid and he ended up catching me in an arm bar – literally beating me at my own game. I definitely learned a lot from that fight. Another thing is that I had five other fighters that I was corner man for so I wasn’t able to give 100% focus emotionally as I needed to. That was the first time and the last time I’ll ever do that again.
Texas Fighting: Would you fight Luna again?
Gilbert Jimenez: Absolutely. I’d love to fight him again.
Texas Fighting: What is your fighting background mainly based in?
Gilbert Jimenez: Well, Brazilian Jujitsu is what I love, but I’ve been fighting on the streets as mentioned before since I was a kid. I’ve always stayed physically fit and kept mentally clear headed as well.
Texas Fighting: Two and a half years isn’t really that long to be involved in MMA, but if we add in your street credibility, I guess we could say that your experience is a lot broader than just the experience you have in the gym. Would that be fair to say?
Gilbert Jimenez: I don’t think I’d be where I am today if I hadn’t experienced what I have out on the street. Also, it’s been about a year and a half since I stepped in the gym and received my blue belt. That’s one of my greater accomplishments.
Gilbert Jimenez: Coming from the street and going into the gym for the first time I had a hot head and thought, “I’m ready to fight, I’ll kick anyone’s a@@.” My instructor was like, “Okay, why don’t you go ahead and wrestle this guy.” five seconds later, I was like,”okay, okay, tap, tap tap.” I figured it was bullsh!* but again five seconds later I’m tapping out. I’ve definitely grown since then.
Texas Fighting: Do you have any MMA goals – where do you see yourself in the future in this sport?
Gilbert Jimenez: It’s a funny thing you mention this. Being that I’m 34 years old, I’m not thinking about how far I’m going to take this, all I’m thinking about is where I’m going to go and how I’m going to get there. My mind is focused on getting on the WEC or UFC. Whichever comes first. I’m looking at making it big. Right now I’m also just training for this fight but I’d also like to eventually open up my own MMA/Jujitsu school.
Texas Fighting: Do you have any favorite professional fighters?
Wanderlei Silva. The man is bad a@@ and he’s still bangin’. That’s me right there, that’s the guy I look up to.
Texas Fighting: How did the nickname “The Pitbull” come about?
Gilbert Jimenez: It’s a name I’ve had for over fifteen years now. I’ve had several nicknames like “psycho Gilbert,” “crazy Gilbert,” even “naked Gilbert” but pitbull just stuck. Out in the street that’s what people know me by. To be honest, I don’t remember where the name originated but people would see me fight and be like, “Man you’re just like a little Pitbull, you don’t stop.” And the name stuck, even up to my fighting career my trainer was like, “dude, you’re relentless, you don’t stop till you get what you want.” You can’t teach that in a gym, I believe that’s just something you’re born with.
Texas Fighting: Do you have any sponsors?
Gilbert Jimenez: I’m managed by B3Sports. I normally hang with three guys from my school that are also sponsored by B3. You’ll be seeing and hearing a lot about us within the Texas area.
Texas Fighting: When is your next mma fight?
This Saturday, August 29th at King of Kombat. It’s going to be a pretty stacked card – come check it out!
Texas Fighting: Who are you fighting?
Gilbert Jimenez: Another B3 fighter by the name of Jace Pitre out of Travis Tooke’s school – Team Tooke.
Texas Fighting: Have you ever met the guy?
Gilbert Jimenez: No, and that’s the way I like it. I’ve never met him or seen him. I like to look at my opponent as my enemy and don’t want to meet him until we get in the cage. Right now my only concern is to train, drop weight and focus on demolishing my opponent.
Texas Fighting: What weight class do you fight in?
Gilbert Jimenez: Lightweight 155
Texas Fighting: As far as training is concerned, how much do you train?
Gilbert Jimenez: I train five to six days a week. Monday-Friday I do morning Jujitsu from 10:30-2:00 and on Tuesdays and Thursdays, on top of morning Jujitsu, I do Muay Thai and MMA classes from 6:00-9:00. And finally, Saturdays we do sparring sessions.
Texas Fighting: Are weights a part of your training?
Gilbert Jimenez: No too much. We do a lot of plyometrics and use our teammates body weight by carying them across the gym floor.
Texas Fighting: Do you hold any titles?
Gilbert Jimenez: Yes, two to be exact. I hold the lightweight 155 TAMMA Title and the USACA Title for my weight division of 155.
Texas Fighting: Anyone you’d like to thank?
Gilbert Jimenez: Jaimie Miller my trainer and friend over at Texas Powerhouse, all my Team at Texas Powerhouse, Furious fightware another one of my sponsors, Chaos City, my parents for doing their best by me and last but not least, my supportive wife.