While many have debated his legitimacy since his first appearance with Anderson Siva, it appears Rickson Gracie is willing to give Steven Seagal his stamp of approval as a "legit martial artist."
Speaking to David Ortiz of FightHubTV, Gracie revealed that Seagal's philosophies were correct and that would generally translate to legitimacy in all other facets of martial arts.
"Definitely. He has - based on his training - a deep understand off the concepts. How good he is in real life, how he will display his effectiveness, I'm not sure. His philosophy is based on proven realities. He believes in technique, and the concepts within Martial Arts.
"I cannot say that Bruce Lee is 100% legit, but everything he says has a profound, deep sense of truth. I am not here to deny the sayings of a guy like Seagal or Bruce Lee. I'm not sure he can prove it on the mat because that's a different matter. But I think they correctly approach the understanding of Martial Arts."
Asked instead whether Seagal could be categorized as a "tough guy," Gracie said that anyone could be tough if they invoke the correct mental approach.
"He is a tough guy. What makes you tough is your mindset and I believe anyone can be tough. How good or how effective he is - I just saw his movies."
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