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Hughes Vs Royce Gracie


Hughes versus gracie. who is the favourite . I don't really like hughes I find him a bit cocky. Is gracie going to wear a gi in this fight I haven't seen anyone wearing gi's at all in recent ufc action.


I think Hughes is going to win. In my OPINION I think Royce is past his prime, and I don't think Hughes meant any disrespect when he said yes about Royce being past his prime. Both are good fighters even if Royce wasn't past his prime I couldn't tell you who would win. The reason I started liking Hughes was because I thought he wasn't cocky, but he could have changed since becoming the champion.


Gracie is a)probably past his time, and b) old news. The reason he did so well in the beginning was because very few people knew ground fighting. At that point he was ahead of the curve. Now people are combining ground fighting and striking. Now he's behind the curve - unless of course he has some crazy striking skills he picked up recently.

Ya also gotta take into account the fact that it's been a loooong time since Gracie stepped into the ring. So not only will he be rusty, he hasn't faced the newest generation of fighters. I predict he'll look like a fish out of water.


He just fought on New Year's Eve.


I didnt see the fight on new years, but it sounded like Royce had a very unimpressive showing against a considerably smaller opponent. Hughes should take this one even though I'm not a fan anymore. He seemed way too cocky on TUF2. It will be cool seeing Royce back in the UFC though. I would love seeing BJ penn destroy Hughes again.


Royce posted in a thread on MMA.tv the other day that he wouldn't be wearing a gi. Here's the link:



Hi guys,

Personally, I would rather see BJ or GSP fight Gracie, but what the heck, you've gotta take what you can get right?

Honestly, I think that everyone is counting Gracie out way too quickly. Is he past his prime? Yes. But, does that mean that he is going to lose? No, not necessarily.

I disagree with everyone who claims that MMA has evolved to the point where Gracie will get whooped on. Has MMA evolved? Yes, definetely. But, is Hughes one of the "New Breed" of MMA guys who can do eveything well? In my opinion, no.

He is very strong for his size, I'll give him that. He is an exellent takedown artist, I'll definetely give him that. And he does have good conditioning.

But, his striking is by no means dominating. Nor is his submission ability.

So, how does he expect to beat Gracie? Will he be able to take him down? Yeah, probably. But once he gets him down, then what?

And to the best of my knowledge, Hughes has never knocked someone out on his feet. So, unless he goes and trains with someone who can really teach him how to strike, I can't see him knocking Gracie out on his feet (especially since Gracie has the reach advantage).

My perdiction is either a decision win for Hughes, or a submission win for Gracie.

Good training,



I gotta go with Hughes on this one. Granted, he may not be the best at stand up or submissions, but I would definitely put his stand up above Gracie's. Add in his strength, takedowns, and pure physical domination, and I see a bloody painful night for Royce.

Royce definitely has a significant chance of catching him in a sub, but I think Matt is smart enough to defend/avoid the majority of what Royce brings in.

***Watch for the Gracie camp to wait until a couple days before the event, when they know the ads have been circulated and the tickets have been bought, and then start with the crazy demands. No rounds, no time limit, no judges, both fighters have to wear pink leotards, etc etc.


Interesting. I was just about to write that Gracie would have a much better chance without rounds and especially without the ref standing the fighters up. Staying on the mat would limit the effect of Hughes' takedowns.


I agree with much of what Sentoguy said. Hughes is not knocking Royce out on the feet from what I've seen and opponents with good takedown/clinch defense AND good hands would be a much bigger threat to Royce. Guys like BJ, GSP, Henderson, Liddell. I could see Hughes winning a dec. in a mostly boring fight. Royce has the choker's chance in this. I don't see many subs being likely except maybe a triangle, rear naked or guillotine. I hope Royce is conditioning right for this. Hughes will surely be able to go all out for the time alloted and his only chance for a finish may be an exhuasted Royce who gets caught in a sub or TKOed on the ground.

I think it's unlikely though given Royce's experience on the mat. This could be an interesting fight but it will probabaly be kind of boring. If Hughes chooses to stay on the feet as he's said then it may be a not so good display of striking on both accounts. I hope this goes to the mat and goes to the finish.


Consider the following boys and girls:

  1. When Royce ruled the UFC no one and I mean NO ONE understood ground fighting! Hence he had his way with all of them as soon as the fight hit the ground. And keep in mind while Dan Severon didn't understand submissions he was a very good wrestler and it took Royce 15:00 to submit him. That should prove that big strong wrestlers (with little else) can give Royce trouble.

Is anyone doubting that Hughes is a better submission man than Severon was back then?

Now add this to the equation: All of the world class grapplers now understand submissions. I'm not saying that they are as good as Royce Gracie at Submission, (some are better) but they know enough to stay out of trouble and, or counter a move that comes their way. And in many cases their skills do rival the Gracies!

By the way do you know how the last three Hughes matches ended? He SUBMITTED ALL OF THEM: One armbar, one choke and one Kimura! That my friend demonstrates a very good understanding of submission techniques!

Furthermore take a close look at Hughes record:

You don't compile a record of 38 - 4 because you are average, not hardly.

12 (T)KOs (31.58%)
18 Submissions (47.37%)
8 Decisions (21.05%)

He submits almost half of everyone he fights!

Less than a quarter of his fights have even gone the distance!

How can anyone say that Hughes is average?

Royce's UFC record is 13-2-3. That's it. So who has the MMA fighting experience? Who is currently at the top of their game? Who has 42 full contact fights and only lost 4?

  1. Royce has been away from the UFC for approximately 9 years! That's not 9 months brother, it's 9 long years. Do you think his skills have gotten better compared to the rest of the field? Not hardly!

How many fights has Hughes had in the Octagon over the past 8 years? That would be 42 fights winning all of them but 4! (2 losses very early on)

In other words, while the "ring rust" has been attaching itself to Royce at a steady rate. Matt has done nothing but polish his art and get better with each fight.

The fights or Jiu-Jitsu matches that Royce has had since leaving the UFC have been few and quite unspectacular. Remember the Walid Ismal (sp) fiasco? Royce was choked unconscious! And then there was his loss to Sakuraba in Pride. Of course Sakurba went through several Gracie's like crap through a goose. But that's another argument.

What has Royce Gracie done over the past 9 years that would lead you to believe that he is even as good as he was back in 97'? But then again, most of us know that he has to actually be BETTER than he was in the mid 90's to defeat Matt Hughes.

  1. Let's do a quick analysis of what it takes to win, and make a comparison.


Stand up:

Someone stated that Hughes stand up skills are not all that great. I agree, they are not as good as most at his level. However what does this really mean in a head to head match with Royce Gracie? Have you ever seen Royce's stand up skills? I have and if you would rank Hughes skills just below ametuer boxers then Royce's would be somewhere around High School level. This is not a put down. The Gracies were never known for their stand up striking ability.

(I will say that Gracie has a sneaky high face kick and if he gets lucky it might work....)

Stand up game: Hughes all the way!

Ground Game:

I know, I know the Gracies invented the ground game. But, remember one important factor; Hughes is a world class wrestler! In fact, he was a 4 time collegiate wrestling champion Division one. You don't get much better than that. And while he may not have grown up with submissions the way Royce did, he has proven over the past 8 years and 42 fights winning all but 4, and 20 by submission that he is more than capable of mixing it up with Royce on the ground skill wise.

Ground Game: Equal.

A quick look at some other aspects of what it takes to win:

Strength: I don't think that you or anyone else is ready to say that Royce is even in the same league with Hughes when it comes to strength and power.

Speed: Are you ready to say that Hughes lightning fast take-downs are slower than Gracie?s moves? Not hardly. What drives a persons moves (besides skill obviously) muscle!

Stamina: Have you ever seen Hughes sucking wind after one or two rounds? No, he is supremely conditioned. I will admit that Gracie has excellent stamina as well. I'll call this one a toss up.

I know how you feel Royce is most definitely the sentimental favorite. He WAS the UFC, no question. If not for Royce and his family we would not have MMA. I give Royce (and his family) a great deal of credit for taking martial arts to the next level and erasing for ever more the image of the mystical black belt fighter who can defeat all comers with lightning kicks and magical pressure points.

I am truly thankful that those days are over, for all but the most gullible, and of course children.

However, this is a new day my friend and the fighters of today are bigger (for their weight) stronger, faster, better trained and they are all well aware (at that level) of every aspect of martial arts, there are no more secrets on the ground! This erases the biggest component of the early Gracie arsenal.

Royce Gracie WILL be defeated by Matt Hughes. Whether he hangs on for 5 rounds (I assume it's a recognized championship fight), or Hughes puts him to sleep early there is no way for the legend to live up to the reality! And the reality is, the game has passed him by!


Say Zeb, you ever get that de'ja vous feeling?

You know, I heard this one guy had the chance to spar with Gracie. The dude had a wrestling background, and decided to see if Gracie could really take a serious classical wrestler, after the win over Severn. Anywho...

My prediction (again)...Split decision for Hughes, thanks in no small part, to those monstrous Hughes-style slams he'll whip out. I think it's very safe to say that Royce is past his prime, and that just won't fly in the ring against Matt Hughes.


I've heard nothing but bad things about Matt Hughes. A lifting buddy of mine trains with a guy who said Hughes used to fool around with his wife. Not real cool in my book, especially coming from a married man...


LOL...sorry :slight_smile:


Um..that's called a rumor. And it's not "real cool" To believe them, or spread them!



While it has been some time since Royce was in a UFC fight, he has frequently fought in Pride as well as other events. One thing you can say for him is he ducks no one, and I like that about him. I think the abscence of a gi and the time limits/stand ups will hurt him and ultimately will cause him to lose in a decision. But let's face it, Matt Hughes is a good fighter, but Royce has seen plenty of good wrestlers/average strikers like him. He has survived all types of fighters and while he isn't undefeated, he has given all of them a war, and I anticipate the same in this fight.


Today, I'd say Huges would win for the reasons everyone has put down.

Both of them in their prime, I'd take Gracie. Eventhough most fighters today know ground and striking, there were alot of strikers back in the day with Gracie, so he fought and beat them; as well as the ground fighters.

However, unless someone here has a Delorean or a Flux Capacitor; we won't be seeing that happen.


Probably Hughes will win, but Royce Gracies contribution to martial arts in general have not only made him a champion, but also a legend.

In my opinion seeing him fight changed the way most martial artists train.


Hughes baby, anyone that comes out to "a country boy can survive" is a bad ass.


I have to give Hughes the advantage as well, especially after Gracie's piss poor showing against Tokoro. Tho he also dominated Yoshida so ya never know, because I'm about 99% sure that Yoshida would completely and utterly rape Hughes.

Nonetheless, I say Hughes wins a decision. I know that Royce COULD submit him (consider that Hughes very nearly got subbed by Verissimo and barely eeked out a decision there, and you can't possibly think that Verissimo has a better guard than Royce), but I think the standup is going to be a factor here, Hughes is FAR superior standing than Royce and obvioiusly has a lot more power.

Hell, I wouldn't even be tremendously surprised if Hughes knocked him out, seeing as to how he may want to avoid Royce's guard all together.