Roger Gracie competed in jiu-jitsu for the last time.
Entering the Gracie Pro mat in Rio de Janeiro for a rematch with Marcus “Buchecha” Almeida years after their first clash in Metamoris, Gracie showed why he’s considered the best grappler in jiu-jitsu history. Gracie and “Buchecha”, the only men who won the IBJJF world championship a record 10 times as black belts, showed a lot of respect early in the match. “Buchecha” went for a pair or takedowns, but Gracie successfully stopped them.
Gracie changed his strategy after both fighters were given penalties, pulling for a half guard and immediately sweeping “Buchecha” and taking his back. The crowd erupted as Gracie went for a lapel choke, forcing his opponent to tap at the 6:52 mark.
Right after the win, Gracie announced his retirement from the sport. He leaves jiu-jitsu without a single submission defeat in his record, and now focus on his return to MMA later this year inside the ONE Championship cage. Gracie, the ONE Championship light heavyweight titleholder, has an MMA record of 8-2.
After Roger Gracie submitted Marcus “Buchecha” Almeida in the Gracie Pro superfight he explained how he managed to take his back and sink in the choke that forced the fellow 10-time world champion in jiu-jitsu to tap.
“I didn’t know I was gonna take his back when we immediately went down. I think I was able to pull guard and assume position that I do really well. I think he kept a little bit his body.. He was looking at my foot because the last time we fought we went to the exactly same position and he turned to attack my foot so I knew he was looking at my foot. He kept trying to turn to his back but I was controlling his arm. So he couldn’t turn his body completely. So I took the moment to get off him and went straight to his back. Cause I was holding his arm, there was a huge gap for a hook to go in. Then I was able to put both hooks in. “
“I was expecting (Almeida to be aggressive) already. I knew there was a possibility that he might take me down. His wrestling is very good. He’s been taking everybody down in his fights. My game plan in the first 5 minutes was not to rush. 15 minutes fight is a long fight. I wanted to save advantage a little bit. I knew when it hit the 5 minutes mark I was able to push the pace. That was exactly what I did. I looked at the clock when it hit 5 minutes. I didn’t want to spend a lot of energy on my feet taking down. I knew he could take me down so I pulled guard to my strong position and it happened“ -Roger Gracie continued.
Gracie was further asked to break down his movement as he took the back of Marcus Almeida Buchecha:
“When I got his back he tried to turn but he turned to the side and I was holding his collar. And I think he stayed there. He got my hand when it went to his collar … The hand was already in. And I start squeezing… I knew this is it – he’s not gonna get out. “
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