After eight years of inactivity, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu legend Renzo Gracie will be making his return to MMA competition. And at 51 years of age, he is not looking at retirement any time soon.
Gracie will be facing fellow veteran Yuki Kondo this Friday at ONE Championship: Reign of Kings in Manila, Philippines, a fight that he says will not be his last.
“I believe I’m going to fight more. I’m going to impress people with this fight, and they’re going to want me to fight more, so I will do it. This is not my farewell fight,” Gracie said (via FloGrappling).
“The only thing that I know is that I’ll be a better man, I’ll be a better teacher, and I’ll be a better person in the sense of passing forward everything that I learn in there.”
Gracie is actually more confident fighting at this stage of his career compared to his younger years, as he feels he had actually smartened up through experience.
“There is a big difference in what I could do when I was young,” Gracie said in another interview with MMA Fighting. “But now I don’t have the stupidity, the ignorance, the lack of knowledge that I had when I was young. So I’m able to see things clearer and better.”
“What people don’t understand when they say ‘You’re going over the hill,’ is downhill is when you pick up speed. Going downhill is 100 percent better than climbing the hill. So downhill, I’m coming. I’m smarter, I’m better and I have a new arsenal.”
Gracie last fought at UFC 112 in 2010, when he was defeated by Matt Hughes via third-round TKO.