Thursday, April 8, 2010

Renzo the GUARD Redeemer!

Renzo Gracie is just a straight-up cool guy. He's classy and humble and still a legit fighter. My first memory of him was from 1995 (a few years before I started training BJJ) - when I watched the World Combat Championship live via Pay-Per-View. Renzo won handily with his jiu jitsu -- he even stepped on a dude's head after he won!

As you know, he's about to get back in to the so-called octagon facing Matt Hughes in this weekend's UFC 112. It should be an interesting fight, despite the fact that neither is a real contender for a title right now.

Check out this interview (via Sherdog) below with Renzo regarding the upcoming Hughes fight. He talks about how under-utilized and one-dimensional the guard has recently been portrayed in MMA. We even mentioned that a couple of weeks ago here. It will be interesting to see how he uses the guard against Hughes.

It's great to hear a fighter like Renzo talk about the importance and relevance of good jiu jitsu in MMA today.* Good luck, Renzo! DSTRYRsg will be rooting for you.

* no doubt we may see some great BJJ in Damiem Maia and BJ Penn on Saturday as well.


  1. He certainly is colorful character and gives a really good interview. Here is an article where he responds to some comments made by Relson claiming: “Roger Gracie is the only person in Gracie Barra who uses pure Gracie Jiu Jitsu.”



  2. All I have to say is Ugh.

  3. Marc: Great article. Renzo makes alot of good points. Politics plague this sport!

    Anonymous: You ain't kidding. He didn't do what he seemed to set out to do. But, that's fighting for you.

  4. Oh great was the World Combat Championship...for what is was back in its day. Wasn't Paulson on that card too....with a ponytail.

    Most people came to BJJ through Royce's domination in the early UFCs. But my first introduction to the Gracie family and BJJ was Renzo in the WCC. Jean Jaques used to tell some great stories about how scrappy Renzo was when they were growing up.

  5. I loved the WCC. That was back when i was doing Kenpo Karate (pre jiu jitz). I had my Karate buddies over my parents' house for the fights.

    In fact, I later went on to train with my awesome buddy, Mike Bitonio (Samoan Bone Breaking/NHB/submission grappling style) in San Pedro because of that event. Do you remember him? Mike's the guy that fought Bart Vale. Bloody stuff!

    Rezno was so tough in that event. Memories, dude!

  6. Who could forget the BONE CRUSHER!!!!! I remember thinking, what's this guy gonna do? Come in and break everyone's bones? Turns out, he just broke Bart Vale's face instead.

    How was the training with him?

  7. Yeah, bro! Mike actually lost the fight, but showed awesome heart. Vale couldn't continue after their fight.

    It was fun training with Mike and the Samoan Bone Breaking dudes in Pedro. A lot of people trash talk our old coach, Kazja, but he was cool and I got a good intro in to grappling/NHB. After a year or so there (actually, training in Kazja's converted backyard), I started with Renato at Street Sports.

    "It was a different time" - as they say! So cool going to all those underground and illegal NHB events all around Los Angeles. Neutral Grounds, Kage Kombat, all the events at Indian casinos. Good times!


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