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The MMA Depressed-us: Sakuraba hunted, Gracies win

The ‘Gracie Hunter’ made his reputation on victories over MMA’s first royal family. But they got their own back, eventually.

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The UFC is taking their annual holiday hiatus once again, which means we’ve got a whole passel of time on our hands. You know what they say about idle hands? Well, we’re doing the devil’s work.

This time around we’ve chosen a particularly grim chapter in MMA history to focus on, the later-era of MMA legend Kazushi Sakuraba’s career. Known as the ‘Gracie Hunter’ Sakuraba rocketed to fame for his victories over MMA’s first family, defeating Royler Gracie, Royce Gracie, Renzo Gracie, Ryan Gracie, and Gracie proteges Vitor Belfort, Ebenezer Fontes Braga, and Nino Schembri.

Despite all that success, the Gracies eventually got some of their own back, starting with Gracie disciple Ricardo Arona’s victory over Sakuraba at Pride Critical Countdown 2005. Royce Gracie got his chance to even the score two years later, at Dynamite!! USA. And Ralek Gracie was there to pick up the pieces with a 2010 win over Sakuraba at Dream 14. We’re watching Arona vs. Sakuraba over on Fight Pass, while Royce vs. Sakuraba 2 & Ralek vs. Sakuraba — can both be found on YouTube.


As always, we’re watching all videos from the beginning. Viewers can follow along with us by pressing play when Zane says “Go.” For those watching other versions of the fights, Connor will try to announce the start of round 1 so they can sync up from there.

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