In 1993, the UFC held their first event in Denver, Colorado, planting the seeds for an entire sport to begin growing out of this barely legal event. The mastermind behind the concept was Art Davie, who held onto an idea for years until he was finally able to turn it into a reality. Davie has just released a book explaining the history of the first UFC and all of the tumultuous events leading up to it, and I had a chance to chat with him about damn near everything!
In the first installment of this six-part series, Davie discusses the early origins of how the UFC began, which go back much further than the 90's, and into an idea he had a decade earlier that took years to come together. We also discussed Davie's early relationship with the Gracie family, including Rorion Gracie who became business partners with Davie in the first UFC, and the all-important question - why Rickson Gracie, arguably the best fighter the family had at the time, did not compete in the first UFC or in any UFC events. Lastly, we learn why Rorion and his family pulled out of the company after UFC 5 and what led up to the departure that resulted in no Gracies ever competing in a UFC event again until Royce Gracie returned at UFC 60.
If you are having trouble viewing the Ooyala player, head to this link here to listen to this interview on Youtube.
If you want to check out Art Davie's new autobiography and uncensored tell-all about the first UFC event, head over to this link here to pick up "Is This Legal?: The Inside Story of The First UFC from the Man Who Created It". It comes with The Fight Nerd seal of approval as a must-have for MMA history fans!