The possibility of Royce Gracie fighting on the UFC Rio card has existed since plans for the UFC to go to Brazil were made, and now it looks even stronger. The Hall of Famer and winner of UFC 1 may come out of retirement to fight on the card that will likely be held late in August in Rio de Janeiro.
Gracie’s manager Mike Kogan told MMA Junkie “I think we’re going to make a deal. We have plenty of time, so there’s really no problems. It’s just a matter of getting it nailed down.”
Kogan added that he and Gracie have talked about a retirement fight (oxymoron?) for the past year, but he noted that the UFC could decide against putting Gracie on the card given that no deal has been made.
If Gracie is to make a return, it certainly would be surprising. The 44-year-old hasn’t fought professionally since the middle of 2007 when he tested positive for steroids following his win over Kazushi Sakuraba.