A Bellator prospect with a famous name thought he had a fight set with Dillon Danis in June. But Danis backed out after initially accepting, according to the undefeated Neiman Gracie.
Gracie told MMA Fighting that Bellator came to him about a fight with Danis at Madison Square Garden on June 24 and he accepted. Danis agreed and then changed his mind, Gracie said.
“They offered me the fight,” Gracie said. “I accepted the fight, he accepted the fight and now he said no. I never asked for the fight, but I say yes. But I understand. I know I’m a bad matchup for him. I know he’s just starting fighting and nobody wants to start their career 0-1. I wouldn’t take the fight neither.”
The matchup made sense on a few levels. Both Danis and Gracie are high-level Brazilian jiu-jitsu specialists and they come from prestigious gyms in New York. Danis trains at Marcelo Garcia’s academy and Gracie calls Renzo Gracie Academy home. The facilities are just four blocks apart in Manhattan and the jiu-jitsu athletes at the gyms have a rivalry.
“I respect the guys from Marcelo’s gym,” Neiman Gracie said. “They are great guys. Some of them are my friends. But it’s just because it pisses me off. I accepted the fight and now it’s not happening anymore. He says that he’s really tough, but when it’s time for him to fight, he’s not gonna fight?”
guys I was offered the fight with Dillon Davis at @BellatorMMA MSG. We agreed to the fight but he backed out. This is not the first time.
— Neiman Gracie (@NeimanGracie) March 27, 2017
Gracie, 28, added that he and Danis were supposed to meet in the IBJJF Pans jiu-jitsu tournament in 2015, but Danis didn’t show up for the match and Gracie ended up getting a bye in the tournament. Gracie said he’s not sure why that happened, but possibly points to the issues Danis has had with other Renzo Gracie jiu-jitsu competitors like Garry Tonon and Gordon Ryan.
“Dillon has a history with those guys,” said Neiman Gracie, who is 5-0 as a pro MMA fighter between Bellator and World Series of Fighting. “The guys want to fight him all the time and he doesn’t want to. But then he goes on the internet and says that he wants to. When it’s time for him to sign something, he doesn’t do it.”
Danis, 23, told Ariel Helwani on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour that a tweet from Neiman Gracie on Monday morning was the first time he has heard of Gracie.
In response to Gracie’s claim, Danis said that Bellator offered him a fight on the MSG card, but he was only interested in fighting on pay per view, otherwise he was going to focus on two BJJ tournaments this year, IBJJF worlds and ADCC.
Danis, who has yet to have a pro or amateur MMA fight, said Bellator offered Gracie the bout without getting a confirmation from him. Bellator wanted the fight on the Spike TV portion of the event.
“I’m not taking that,” Danis said he told matchmaker Rich Chou. “I told you, I’m only missing the worlds for pay per view.”
Danis, who has become a well-known name in MMA circles as the grappling training partner for Conor McGregor, said he thinks he knows why Gracie is bringing this up publicly.
“They’re just trying to get a name off me,” Danis said. “It’s understandable.”
Gracie said that isn’t the reason why. He said he just wanted to get his story out about what happened before Danis could spin it on social media, like he has in the past with others.
“I don’t like that sh*t,” Gracie said. “If you’re gonna fight, you fight. If you’re not gonna fight, don’t say nothing. If you talk sh*t, you’ve gotta back it up.”
Source:: mma fighting