Royce Gracie and Ken Shamrock will clash at Bellator 149 for the third time in their careers. They first met at UFC 1 in Novemeber 1993, where Gracie defeated Shamrock by submission in 57 seconds. In April 1997, the rematch took place at UFC 5 and the fight ended in a draw after 36 minutes.
All these years later, Gracie was not anticipating another fight, but did not want to turn down the offer from Bellator.
“I played a little hard to get, but for sure I knew we had to do the third fight with Ken; there was no doubt,” Gracie told MMAjunkie. “He still insisted on fighting me. I guess the guy cannot sleep for 22 years. He wanted a rematch after I choked him out and embarrassed him and made him tap.
“I don’t smoke, I don’t drink, I don’t party. I live a very healthy lifestyle. I think the Royce today would have beat the Royce from 22 years ago. I don’t think it’s the same thing for him. I think the Ken Shamrock today would lose to the Ken Shamrock from 22 years ago.”
The implication here being that Gracie believes he is currently in better shape than his opponent.
Gracie vs. Shamrock III takes place on Feb. 19, 2016 at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas.