Renzo Gracie recently appeared on the UFC unfiltered podcast where he was asked about the new BJJ generation of BJJ and how they don’t want to fight MMA:
Renzo (speaking about the new generation):
(The evolution) It makes the kids, the new generation, sometimes delusional. They don’t realize. They think they are the best in the world and that they can beat anybody. It’s not true. It’s not reality…
Recently Keenan Cornelius said that if Helio and Rickson Gracie would be around nowadays with the new generation, their level would be like a purple belt at best… That comment found an answer. My grandfather Carlos Gracie used to say ‘Be careful with a tongue in your mouth because it may be the whip that will hit you in eyes’. So that’s exactly what happened.. The last competition, he got submitted by a triangle, and he goes in saying he’s so good etc.. That’s just the way that it is today. They change teachers all the time. They don’t have values. They want to change Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to American Jiu-Jitsu… But at the last competition, he got tapped by a basic triangle from the guard. I with my humble ‘purple belt’ can help him to learn to defend the triangle. I don’t remember the last time I got caught by a triangle porra!
Renzo’s comments were as a result to Keenan Cornelius’ statement on his podcast about the BJJ traditions.
BJJ is kinda like that (Turkmenistan- an autocratic country ruled by an egomaniac dictator). If you say anything about Helio or Rickson, like if you say that their Jiu-Jitsu wasn’t good. People will be like “are you kidding me? Rickson is the greatest black belt of all time”.
I get that you have to show respect to pioneers who came before you but their Jiu-Jitsu was definitely not as good as it is today. Their level was probably tough purple belt level…
It is not known if Keenan has ever trained with Rickson.
In the midst of this controversy, Atos black belt and world No Gi champion black belt Josh Hinger wrote a piece on flograppling arguing that Rickson views on sport Jiu-Jitsu and self defense were outdated:
It is well known that Rickson has made other negative statements about sport jiu-jitsu practitioners.
I have a problem with these statements and Rickson’s consistent belittlement of jiu-jitsu athletes who chose to exercise their skills in a tournament setting.
First of all, the sport-based branch of the activity does not negate the essence of a martial art…
Without rules, very few people would care to practice them, especially not children. If there were no rules, I would just bite every single person who tried to touch me.
This is not the first time that Keenan Cornelius has been critical of the old school Jiu-Jitsu:
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