UFC Rio Fight Card: Royce Gracie Hints At Appearance

It could all be bluster or an attempt to get publicity, but my sense tells me he's not exaggerating. Royce Gracie, UFC Hall of Famer and the first key figure in North American MMA, appears to be close to obtaining a fight on the UFC: Rio event in August later this year. He told UOL Esportes the following:

"It would be the perfect place to do my last fight. I never fought in Rio de Janeiro and I couldn't be more psyched. We are negotiating [the fight deal], but we should have it finalized in two weeks. We only had an initial contact and I don't even have an opponent yet, but we should have that finalized soon" said the 44 year old Gracie.

He also touched on his weight:

 "My weight is the same as it was twenty years ago [80kg], I am still training, keeping the blade sharp. I follow a very strict diet. I never drank, never party, Carnaval, none of that... I'm ready to fight"

If you're doing the math, 80kg is approximately 176lbs. Gracie could fight at either welterweight or middleweight or even more likely, catchweight.

Ordinarily I'd be very opposed to the idea of Gracie continuing to compete. His game is in no way prepared for MMA in 2011. He's long since past his expiration date as a competitive athlete and his last MMA fight in June of 2007 was marred by a lackluster performance followed by a positive test for steroid use. Gracie also never formally addressed the punishments handed down by the California State Athletic Commission, thereby making him likely ineligible to fight anywhere in the U.S. or North America.

But this is Brazil and this is very likely his retirement tour. As culpable as Gracie is for his own misconduct and slightly tarnished legacy, it wouldn't kill the UFC to allow one of MMA's foremost pioneers the opportunity to end his career on more favorable terms by granting him one last fight in his home country, the very country responsible for much of MMA's worldwide success.

More on this story as it develops.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.