Lebell vs gracie

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trevek2 Addict 119 posts
OK, as the Ali vs Lee has run its course here is another one. A few years ago, just after the first UFCs there was a lot of open challenges going around, like Bob Wall's Dirty Dozen etc. At one point the Gracies allegedly challenged guys like Benny Urquidez and Gene LeBell. LeBell replied with an open letter in Black Belt magazine where he said it was not really realistic to fight the younger Gracies, like Royce, but if they wanted a challenge he would be honoured to fight the elder Gracie (Helio?).

Of course it never happened but what are people's thoughts on this one?
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andy Resident 749 posts
Helio is too old to fight judo gene lebell and a lot lighter.



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Robsco 1331 posts
When exactly did Lebell put that offer out?
The Admin Guy
trevek2 Addict 119 posts
To be honest, I seem to remember it being about ten years ago, after the first couple of UFCs. I think the Gracies had (allegedly) offered him a challenge and he was a bit offended. He responded saying he was a bit old for them and that their father was nearer his age and he'd be honoured to fight him if they really wanted a Gracie LeBell fight. As I said, I seem to remember it being a letter in Black Belt Magazine.

Of course everyone is a bit old now, but let's play with it as a theoretical question?

Here's an interesting link.
http://www.geocities.com/global_training_report/rorion.htm#HelioXKimura
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trevek2 Addict 119 posts
Here's another interesting link which has a few comments about the LeBell vs Gracie thing AND a funny story about Stevie Seagull

http://www.judoinfo.com/discuss/index.php?showtopic=951
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Dave Addict 183 posts
Helio is too old to fight Lebell and Lebell is too old to fight most of the gracies, however Gene Lebell is a world class grappler and a really nice guy.

Lets hope the Gracie lovers on here don't slate Lebell when they dont know how good he really is or was. The Machado family(who learned from the gracies) are just as good if not better than most Gracies and train regular with Lebell and they say the guy is the toughest guy alive and an immense grappler/fighter. I believe what the Machados say as they are great people and stand up guys.
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andy Resident 749 posts
how old is lebell? at the moment, helio is 91, rickson is about 44, rorian mid fifties?
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roninjg Newbie 10 posts
Gene LaBell's about 73ish.

I think the closest Gracies to him in age are Carlson and Robson Gracie. Both very well known for there early vale tudo fights in Brazil.

Has Gene LaBell ever been tested in this sort of fight? Or had a history fighting in this sort of arena?

If not I'd go with the Gracie.
trevek2 Addict 119 posts
Not sure of LeBell's whole history, but he did once fight (and win)a kind of early mixed martial arts competition against a boxer (1960's I think) in a challenge match that no Judo guy could beat a boxer. Apparently the challenger reckoned Judo guys could only break boards and would be useless in a real fight!
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