MMA legend Royce Gracie talks jiu-jitsu, rise of Macfarlane as Bellator champion

MMA legend Royce Gracie talks Bellator, Macfarlane and importance of MMA in islands

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Bellator Brand Ambassador and UFC Hall of Famer Royce Gracie co-hosted a BJJ seminar this afternoon alongside Bellator flyweight champion Ilima-Lei Macfarlane at the Blaisdell Center in Honolulu.

With dozens of fans and jiu-jitsu practitioners in attendance, Gracie and Macfarlane instructed and demonstrated maneuvers and drills for those in attendance and stressed the importance of self-defense.

For Gracie, it was an opportunity he couldn’t pass up not just to teach the sport he loves, but to also make people understand why mixed-martial arts is so important.

“It’s for Bellator to give back to the public,” Gracie said. “It’s not just how to defend themselves in a street fight situation, but it’s too give confidence - to teach them about a healthy lifestyle. With practice, you gotta get up and train, not just rely on talent. You have to have discipline.”

Teaching alongside Macfarlane, Gracie went on to say how impressed he has been with her rise as a fighter and the way she represents herself and the jiu-jitsu community.

“She represents Brazilian jiu-jitsu very well,” he said. “She finishes all her fights using the grappling part. (She’s) a smart fighter. I fnot, she wouldn’t be the champion.”

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