EXCLUSIVE | Kron Gracie Talks Metamoris II Fight with Shinya Aoki and The Gracie Family | Fist-Ta-Cuff Radio
Kron Gracie, one of the best Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu players in the world and son of the legendary Rickson Gracie, joined BJPENN.COM’s Fist-Ta-Cuff Radio program on Sunday, May 26, 2013 to discuss his upcoming fight at the second Metamoris Pro Jiu-Jitsu Invitational.
Emanating from the Pauley Pavilion in Los Angeles, Ca. on June 9, Metamoris II comes on the heels of the successful first event from back in October of 2012, which saw a number of exciting match-ups between prominent BJJ competitors and some who have rose to prominence without utilizing competition matches.
The main event of Metamoris II pits Kron against MMA fighter, and BJJ & Judo black belt, Shinya Aoki. Despite Aoki’s absence from competitive jiu-jitsu for some time, Kron made it clear that his preparation is just as intense, if not more-so, in preparing to take on the “Grandmaster of Flying Submissions”.
“I don’t think I’ve ever trained so hard for a competition, and I don’t think I’ve ever been more anxious to see what’s going to happen in a fight,” Kron said, noting that Aoki’s name of all the potential opponents he was offered was the one that excited him most.
“A lot of different fighters, you know that it’s impossible for them to catch me- not impossible, but they’re not guys who submit guys. So getting ready for this fight is very, very serious, very challenging, very fun.”
Aoki’s dangerous guard, flexibility and well-rounded game have made Kron very aware of just how vicious an opponent he is facing next month. In training, Kron knows that the submission-based competition could play to Aoki’s advantage because he’s known for taking advantage of any opportunity given to him on the ground.
But despite a well-rounded game, it is the unfamiliarity of his opponent that gives Kron the most trouble.
“I’ve never fought with him, I’ve never trained with him so I don’t really know what to expect. I know he’s a very dangerous fighter and he’s always breaking people off, so for me knowing how good he is at jiu-jitsu and knowing how much of a reputation he has for being such a submission artist, that makes me want to fight him and test myself against him. Because I have a problem with people who don’t really want to fight me, you know? So knowing that he’s going to try and fight me is already an interesting fight with me.”
Those fighters Kron mentioned who “don’t really want to fight” are abundant in the world of competitive BJJ, where now-a-days the goal seems to be gaining points and maintaining a lead rather than going for the kill in an attempt to submit your opponent. Despite Kron’s success in competitive jiu-jitsu, he made it clear that the more rules implemented, the more it allows fighters who don’t try to dominate compete with those who do.
Of course, Kron’s last name of Gracie is synonymous with both BJJ and MMA. With so many Gracies making a name for themselves, Kron was quick to point out that as far as competing, there weren’t many Gracies who have made the effort to try and reach the top as of late.
“To tell you the truth, there’s very few people in the Gracie family that are really trying to compete and really trying to be the best, you know?” Kron started. “There’s a few; of course there’s Roger, Kyra, Clark, Ralek has competed, Ryron has competed and Rener has competed. But there’s very few of us that have really sat there and competed against people, you know? There’s a lot of Gracies out there, a lot of guys who train jiu-jitsu, but they’re not all competing and they’re not all putting it on the line.”
Despite the lack of competitive edge among the Gracie clan according to one of the best of the bunch, Kron made it clear that he holds no ill will toward his family, and that he’ll always be there to support those honoring the family name.
“My biggest competition is not against my family. If I see somebody in the Gracie family winning, I’m not competing against them. I’m hoping they win, I’m hoping for them to carry their name and the Gracie name as far as they can take it. But for me, I’m trying to be the best in the whole world. I don’t really compete against my family,” Kron said.
To hear the full-length interview with Kron Gracie, including his thoughts on what it’s like to carry on the legacy of his father Rickson and whether or not we’ll ever see him compete in MMA, listen to the player below.