Royce: Cross training to blame for recent Gracie family losses
Mixed martial arts was founded by the Gracie family, but Saturday was a particularly hard night for the clan at WSoF 5, with Rolles losing via KO in the second, Gregor losing a UD, and only Neiman picking up a win (and by submission) in his pro debut.
it is widely understood that MMA has developed from its Vale Tudo origins, drawing now from striking, BJJ, and above all, from wrestling. The Gracie family has been faulted for not keeping up with the changes in the sport.
However, in an interview with MMA Fighting’s Guilherme Cruz, Royce Gracie says the reason Gracie family fighters are not doing well is in fact because they are cross training.
“Jiu-jitsu is enough,” said Royce. “I’ve trained boxing in the past to learn the distance, trained wrestling to understand how he would take me down, but I won’t get there to fight my opponent’s game. The guys from the family want to complement their game, like if jiu-jitsu was incomplete. I guess they forgot a little about history.”
“I do jiu-jitsu my whole life, so why would I try to stand and bang with Mike Tyson? I’m going to learn boxing in six months because my opponent is good in boxing? That makes no sense.”
“Roger, like any other member of the family, is trying to learn wrestling, boxing. I believe in pure jiu-jitsu. That’s what I’ve done in the past. You have to go back to your roots and train Gracie jiu-jitsu.”
“Tim Kennedy is one of the toughest guys in my opinion. If Roger had defeated him, he’d have deserved a title shot. Tim Kennedy is really, really tough. Why they cut Roger I really don’t know either, I have no idea.”