Royce Gracie vs Kazushi Sakuraba Pride Grand Prix 2000
After having defeated Royler Gracie in their 1999 bout. Kazushi Sakuraba now faced Royce Gracie in the 2000 Grand Prix final of the PRIDE fighting Championships. In what went down in the history books as the longest mixed martial arts fight to date. In a match which would forever cement Sakuraba’s legacy as that of the Gracie hunter.
The fight had no time limit, with the victor being declared either via submission, knockout or throwing in the towel. So with redemption on his mind, Gracie looked to stop Sakuraba in this ninety-minute match. In this fascinating back and forth battle between these two legends of the sport. That had those in attendance and fans watching around the world on the edge of their seats.
We see one of the greatest examples of heart, grit and determination are ever seen in a fight. Which may well never again be repeated. In what would become known as one of the most gruelling and greatest mixed martial arts fights of all time. Which one of these MMA legends would be crowned the winner?
Gracie vs Sakuraba Pride 2000
This fight would be the Brazilain Jiu-jitsu of the Gracie family versus the catch wrestling of Sakuraba. Royce who would enter the fight wearing a full BJJ Gi. While Sakuraba would go for a more slimline and some would say practical pair of bright orange coloured shorts.
In a titanic back and forth battle, Gracie struggled to gain the upper hand. Consistently having his attacks stemmed, he would receive multiple legs kicks, which throughout the fight would go on to take their toll. Visibly limping and unable to secure and takedowns or as a result submissions. At ninety minutes into the bout, Royce’s corner would throw in the towel.
It was one of the greatest spectacles the sport had ever seen and it remembered to this day as one of the greatest fights in history. The fighters would meet again some years later, but the result of the fight be put into serious doubt following Gracie’s positive test for anabolic steroids.