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Warlord
Mt. Rushmore is the famous cliffside work featuring mammoth headstones of some America's most influential and well known forefathers.

The question here is, who would you guys consider to be the forefathers of Mixed Martial Arts as we know it today. My four would probably be:

1.) Royce Gracie - The original "Ultimate Fighter." He was one of the baddest men in the world during his time, and I can still remember the outcry for "Gracie vs. Tyson", or the "Gracie vs. Bruce Lee, who would've won?" questions. That's the kind of shit you still hear even today. No one even semi-literate can have an MMA conversation without mentioning Royce Gracie at some point, or in some context.

2.) Kazushi Sakuraba - PRIDE FC's original "Superstar." Sakuraba became a legend after defeating 4 Gracie's in the ring, including the aforementioned Royce Gacie. His 1 and a half hour battle with Royce was legendary, and his comeback win via armbar submissiom against current 205lb champ "Rampage" Jackson propelled him to another stratoshpere. Kazushi is the myth of PRIDE, in much the same way Royce Gracie is in terms of the UFC. Both men will forever figure into any equation when determining the "greatest of all time."

3.) Wanderlei Silva - The God of PRIDE, Silva became the new face of the company after trashing Kazushi Sakuraba in the ring in mere moments, and then again in their rematch. Silva was Pride's first Middleweight champion, and he reigned for a longer period than any champion in MMA history.

4.) Randy Cotoure - For some reason, I really don't feel comfortable placing Randy here, but I will do it anyway. Randy appeared on the MMA scene quite some time ago, and he has had much success during his stay. Perhaps after several years have passed and he has been away from the sport, I will feel more comfortable placing Mr. Cotoure among the other established "forefathers" of MMA.

So what do you guys think? Any fighters you agree or disagree with?
BrutalBodyShots
Cool topic, and I agree with your names. The first two are obvious lock ins. I'd be curious which others people would suggest for the second two.

thehype
Maybe Shamrock...maybe.
DEP Nihilist
Krazy Horse would be a great addition.
The CEO
Royce, Kazushi, Randy, and Fedor would probably do the trick...
Warlord
QUOTE(thehype @ Oct 26 2007, 02:11 PM) [snapback]362437[/snapback]
Maybe Shamrock...maybe.

You know Hype, I actually would tend to agree with you on Shamrock. Skill-wise he doesn't belong on the list, but as far as popularity and transcendence goes, he probably does deserve an honorable mention.
AussieLad
I'm probably going to get shouted down, but i dont feel royce belongs there either

He was great in the early days, before the sport evolved. He is an awesome jiu-jitsu practioner, but he is not a complete fighter and in his prime i dont think he would have had the same success against todays competition. A pioneer, certainly, an all time great, yes, but one of the ultimates? NO. His fight with Hughes cemented the skill divide between the old and the new (yes, i know how rusty he was going into that fight)

Whereas Couture has been in the game for a long time, and has managed to grow with MMA and adapt. Not only in terms of accomplishments and skill, randy has become an icon of the sport. I feel comfortable saying he should be a lock
BigG
Randy should be there definitely...and I'm not even a fan of his.
Warlord
QUOTE(AussieLad @ Oct 27 2007, 05:32 PM) [snapback]362542[/snapback]
I'm probably going to get shouted down, but i dont feel royce belongs there either

He was great in the early days, before the sport evolved. He is an awesome jiu-jitsu practioner, but he is not a complete fighter and in his prime i dont think he would have had the same success against todays competition. A pioneer, certainly, an all time great, yes, but one of the ultimates? NO. His fight with Hughes cemented the skill divide between the old and the new (yes, i know how rusty he was going into that fight)

Whereas Couture has been in the game for a long time, and has managed to grow with MMA and adapt. Not only in terms of accomplishments and skill, randy has become an icon of the sport. I feel comfortable saying he should be a lock

Royce was 500 years old when he fought Matt Hughes.

That being said, in his prime Royce Gracie was fighting guys 3 and 4 guys a night, all 2 to 3 times bigger than himself. He was the first UFC champion, and he backed that up by winning the tournament again next year. The skill level back then may have been weak compared to today, but the UFC was truly a "no holds barred" event back then. There was basically no rules. You were either KO'd, or submitted. The ref was there for largely cosmetic purposes; maybe to stop a fight if a fighter was totally out or to drag a fighter off his opponent after he'd submitted him.

I'd reccommend anyone who isn't too familiar with the early UFC or MMA in general to go back and look at some of the stuff that was going on in the early 90's. Just because Royce dominated a weak era doesn't mean he should be punished, IMO.
AussieLad
QUOTE(Warlord @ Oct 28 2007, 01:53 AM) [snapback]362571[/snapback]
Royce was 500 years old when he fought Matt Hughes.

That being said, in his prime Royce Gracie was fighting guys 3 and 4 guys a night, all 2 to 3 times bigger than himself. He was the first UFC champion, and he backed that up by winning the tournament again next year. The skill level back then may have been weak compared to today, but the UFC was truly a "no holds barred" event back then. There was basically no rules. You were either KO'd, or submitted. The ref was there for largely cosmetic purposes; maybe to stop a fight if a fighter was totally out or to drag a fighter off his opponent after he'd submitted him.

I'd reccommend anyone who isn't too familiar with the early UFC or MMA in general to go back and look at some of the stuff that was going on in the early 90's. Just because Royce dominated a weak era doesn't mean he should be punished, IMO.


Maybe i am being too harsh.

Dont get me wrong, he was dominant and undefeated for a long period. I suppose he would make it on to the mountain in terms of a ground roots lineage.

And yes he was way too old to be fighting hughes. But my point was more that his skillset was more limited than todays guys, and his deficiency at striking was high lighted vs hughes. He wasnt just too old, he was outdated
Warlord
QUOTE(AussieLad @ Oct 27 2007, 10:49 PM) [snapback]362576[/snapback]
Maybe i am being too harsh.

Dont get me wrong, he was dominant and undefeated for a long period. I suppose he would make it on to the mountain in terms of a ground roots lineage.

And yes he was way too old to be fighting hughes. But my point was more that his skillset was more limited than todays guys, and his deficiency at striking was high lighted vs hughes. He wasnt just too old, he was outdated

Royce was both too old and too outdated in his match with Hughes. But as an aside, he actually did fine in his standup against Matt. His only problem was getting grounded and pounded out and being victim of yet another lame-ass early stoppage by the UFC. Hughes put Gracie in a tight armbar and had to break the hold because Royce wouldn't tap. Find another fighter out there today who would rather get his arm broke than tap out. It's not as common as you might think, lol.

If Royce had been born in this generation of fighters, I don't have any doubts that he could've been the same dominant fighter that he was in the early 90's.
DEP Nihilist
I would include Royce just because of what he did in the early days...I know he wasn't against the most "complete" fighters and that a lot of them finished with sub-.500 MMA records, but what he did for the sport in general means something too. Even after Hughes beat his ass you could hear how nuts the crowd was going when he was saying "I'll be back...I got a few left in me."
BrutalBodyShots
I still can't believe that Royce didn't tap from that armbar.

DEP Nihilist
QUOTE(BrutalBodyShots @ Oct 29 2007, 08:41 PM) [snapback]362821[/snapback]
I still can't believe that Royce didn't tap from that armbar.


Yeah, that was nuts.
Warlord
QUOTE(DEP Nihilist @ Oct 29 2007, 07:46 PM) [snapback]362823[/snapback]
Yeah, that was nuts.

Dude went into some kind of goddamn zen buddhist meditation right there in the ring, blocking out the pain and shit. Unreal.
DEP Nihilist
QUOTE(Warlord @ Oct 30 2007, 12:30 AM) [snapback]362838[/snapback]
Dude went into some kind of goddamn zen buddhist meditation right there in the ring, blocking out the pain and shit. Unreal.


LOL yeah he looked incredibly calm.
AussieLad
QUOTE(Warlord @ Oct 28 2007, 04:38 AM) [snapback]362578[/snapback]
Royce was both too old and too outdated in his match with Hughes. But as an aside, he actually did fine in his standup against Matt. His only problem was getting grounded and pounded out and being victim of yet another lame-ass early stoppage by the UFC. Hughes put Gracie in a tight armbar and had to break the hold because Royce wouldn't tap. Find another fighter out there today who would rather get his arm broke than tap out. It's not as common as you might think, lol.

If Royce had been born in this generation of fighters, I don't have any doubts that he could've been the same dominant fighter that he was in the early 90's.


Tim Sylvia vs Frank Mir. Tim got his arm broken and still wanted to fight. But thats the only example i can think of
DEP Nihilist
QUOTE(AussieLad @ Nov 2 2007, 06:14 PM) [snapback]363173[/snapback]
Tim Sylvia vs Frank Mir. Tim got his arm broken and still wanted to fight. But thats the only example i can think of


LOL Herb Dean saying "Your fuckin' arms broken!"
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