Padding your MMA record is all the rage just ask Askar Mozharov – Askar Mozharov was 25-7 as of May 4th, 2022, today he’s 19-12.
A record change he attributes to Russian foes and claims to have no part in.
But Mozharov is certainly not the first fighter to have a padded record. Many fans claim that Khabib Nurmagomedov’s early record is questionable to say the least due to the fact he faced a lot of low level opposition – some in a promotion his father ran. Be that as it may, Nurmagomedov later proved his name and successfully defended the title a handful of times.
Another great of MMA – Rickson Gracie is believed to have a padded record. Recently Gracie came out and claimed that his record is ‘legit. During an interview with Trocação Franca, Rickson claimed:
“And every tournament I entered after I turned 18, weight class or openweight division, I submitted every match I had and never lost. I entered luta livre tournaments back when Rolles was excited about it, I never lost either.” Rickson said.
“Sambo tournaments in Brazil and in the United States, I also never lost. Street fights against guys that were really tough, professionals, or street fights with surfers … fights with luta livre guys, jiu-jitsu tournaments, seminars, any other situation — every time I faced an opponent, he was submitted. I never won by points. And counting very superficially, it’s at least 450 fights, so I set that as my record.” Rickson added.
But what Rickson is neglecting to say is that his own father disputed his record – which btw used to be 400-0 but has since had 50 added to it. The 50 is especially funny considering Rickson hasn’t fought for almost 20 years and has 7 herniated discs in his back which prevent him from even light rolling.
According to Hélio, Rickson has only competed in fights that are on his record. Helio Gracie also alleged that Rickson used practice and amateur bouts to come to a number over 400, and that if he counted his fights like Rickson does, he would have in excess of one million.
It should be noted that Rickson Gracie had problems in his relationship with his father. According to Rickson’s biography published last year Rickson’s brother Royce became the family bannerman in the UFC thanks to a pay dispute.
While Helio stayed back in Rio, his eldest son Rorion Gracie who had brought Rickson to California put the financial squeeze on Rickson.
After Royce was unable to keep up with the competition in the UFC, Helio intervened to pressure Rickson into carrying the family banner:
When Kim and I met with my dad, Rorion, and Art Davie at an office in Los Angeles, I told them that I would be happy to fight for a million dollars. When Art tried to justify the UFC’s paltry pay scale, I told him that this was his problem, not mine. Finally, my dad played the Gracie card and told me that in his day, he fought for family honor, not money.
This lead to a conflict between Rickson and Helio – but this conflict isn’t explained or elaborated on further in the book. It’s only later we learn they reconciled after the tragic death of Rickson’s firstborn son which also led Rickson to retire from MMA.