Never one to bottle up what he’s thinking, Renzo Gracie voiced his opinion on the events leading up to the impending title rematch between middleweight king Anderson Silva and Chael Sonnen. While giving Sonnen credit for being slick and get what he wants, the Gracie wouldn’t take the same route Chael did if he were in his shoes. Here’s some of what Renzo says in a video interview in Portuguese by the website Sexto Round:
“I never liked smack talk because, to provoke others, you end up losing that mutual respect. Where I come from that would smell of blood. Back where I come from, if you say something like he did, you’d better put up your dukes; you’re going to have to throw down no matter where you are. That’s why I’d never do that kind of stuff. I’d always treat my adversaries with respect.
Now honestly, I feel he [Chael] was smart in what he did, because he got tapped out by Anderson Silva, lost the fight, and then he got caught using steroids. And if you take a good look, nobody’s talking about it. So all this taunting he’s been doing ended up serving as an eraser. This provocation he’s been doing became something so big that it overshadowed all the problems he’d been having. And now all you hear is people talking about the rematch with Anderson Silva. …
There’s also humor, a higher form of intelligence. Not everyone has good humor. You might want to be Mohammed Ali, but here’s why there is only one of him: he had the ability to provoke without offending you.
Chael has already lost that line of thinking. He lost his class. He was funny up until that point. If someone says the things he said about Anderson’s wife to me, wherever I may be, get ready, because I’m going to lay a beating on the poor sucker.
Now that’s why I’ve never been into that kind of provocation. It can end up taking a completely different direction from what it was meant to.”