Roger Gracie in the superfight of the 2007 ADCC against Jon Olav Einemo.
This morning Gracie Magazine broke the shocking news that Roger Gracie will not be competing in the superfight at the 2009 ADCCs in Barcelona due to a knee injury. The FightWorks Podcast has learned that his opponent, Robert Drysdale learned of the possibility that Roger was unable to compete yesterday when he read some online forums. However he did not put too much faith in the news until he saw Gracie Magazine’s article today. In a conversation with Drysdale, he mentioned that he has not been contacted by ADCC yet regarding the status of his superfight at all. He has emailed the organizers and is awaiting information about who his replacement might be.
“I know what everyone else knows. No one really contacted me.” Drysdale said. “It sucks because I really wanted to fight that guy. But I’m sure it’s a real injury and he’s not faking it or anything like that. Shit happens… I personally really wanted to fight the guy. I was looking forward to the fight and I thought I had a great shot at beathing him no-gi. Now it’s just going to be me waiting for Abu Dhabi to come up with a replacement. I have no idea who that guy is going to be.”
This is not the first time an athlete who was scheduled to fight in one of the biannual ADCC superfights was unable to participate. In 2005 Ricardo Arona was forced to drop out due to a commitment in a PRIDE MMA fight, and in 2007 Dean Lister did not compete.
When asked who he would like to see replace Roger Gracie, Drysdale stated he would like to face Fedor Emelianenko, the Russian MMA mega-star whose participation in the 2009 ADCC was announced last November. However Emelianenko’s name has not been included on the ADCC’s official site for the Barcelona event.