Royler Gracie teaches jiu-jitsu in his San Diego academy.
Today at the International Jiu-Jitsu Federation World Championship in Long Beach, California, Royler Gracie stopped by the broadcast booth to discuss his upcoming fight with Eddie Bravo at the 2011 ADCC Championship in Nottingham, England on September 24th and 25th.
As you heard in that conversation, Royler confirmed that he expects to the match against Eddie Bravo (technically a rematch of his 2003 ADCC loss to Bravo) to move forward and that he looks forward to the opportunity. He said that everything is basically worked out but no contract has been signed yet.
After the interview took place, Royler said he’d be forwarding some thoughts about this rematch to us by email. Here is Royler’s message, word for word:
To all my Fans.
Here is the truth regarding my potential participation in an ADCC Super Fight: I received a call from my cousin, Renzo, who told me that ADCC was interested in having me participate in their September event. I told him that it would be a pleasure for me to once again compete for the ADCC organization. Renzo said that ADCC Vice President Guy Nievens would contact me to negotiate the terms of my contract, including the purse for the match. The following day, the ADCC website reported the match and several media outlets contacted me. I stated that it would be great to once again train hard for a grappling match and that I was confident that we would be able to enter into a contract. At that point no details had been discussed nor had I even spoken with anyone from the ADCC organization regarding this match.
Guy Nievens called me several days later to negotiate the contract terms for the match. In my experience, these negotiations are always confidential. The very next day, I was shocked to learn that Mr. Nievens had disclosed certain details of our conversation to the public. Perhaps Mr. Nievens was attempting to trick me into entering into an unfair contract? Regardless of his motivation, it is deplorable that someone working for Sheik Tahnoon would, in my opinion, behave in such an unethical, unprofessional and disrespectful manner. The Sheik is a distinguished man who has been instrumental in the growth of submission wrestling throughout the world. Mr. Nievens’ actions show, in my opinion, an inability to perform his duties as VP of ADCC and unworthiness to represent the Sheik.
Everyone knows that I am a fighter. I have never shied away from a challenge. Since I was 6 years old, I have fought hundreds of matches for free, just for the love of the sport. I have fought under sport jiu-jitsu rules, judo rules, submission wrestling rules, MMA rules and many times without any rules. I have faced opponents sometimes twice my size. Cowardice is not a word in mine or my family’s vocabulary. Throughout my almost 40 year career, I achieved the pinnacle of my sport, including seven world titles. When fighting in a professional event, after years of dedication, it is only fair and appropriate for me to ask for a reasonable purse that reflects my successful career in the ring and my unimpeachable conduct as a professional athlete. Everyone who knows me understands that I will show up to any event well prepared. This entails me having to stop teaching classes and seminars for approximately two months with great financial cost to my family and me. All I am asking is for the ADCC organization to cover these expenses. I am still confident that the Abu Dhabi organization will treat me with the respect that I have earned and will come through with this match in the name of all our loyal fans and supporters
A rematch between Royler Gracie and Eddie Bravo will draw a lot of interest from semi-casual fans that otherwise may not get very excited about an ADCC event. If you believe that any increased interest in submission grappling and Brazilian jiu-jitsu is a good thing, then it’s safe to say a rematch between these competitors is something we all want to happen! We will hope all parties can agree on something, and we can see a great match of high-level submission grappling in September.