Roger Gracie admits no Brazilian has matched Gordon Ryan’s obsession with BJJ training. While Craig Jones is out there joking about autism, Roger has disected what makes Ryan such a unique competitor and why we’ll be seeing him dominate in years to come.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu legend Roger Gracie recently made an interesting admission about current ADCC champion Gordon Ryan – no Brazilian competitor has matched his sheer obsession and dedication when it comes to training.
In a recent podcast appearance, Gracie discussed at length the factors behind Ryan’s dominance of the no-gi grappling scene. A key reason cited was Ryan’s intense training regimen of twice daily sessions, which Gracie revealed has been constant for over a decade, minus one brief vacation to Hawaii.
“He trains more than anyone. It’s no wonder he’s good,” Gracie stated to Cortes do Connect Cast, outlining how Ryan spends more time on the mats than any of his Brazilian opponents. This dedication manifests itself in superior conditioning, as Ryan has shown the ability to grapple full speed for 30 minute matches without fading.
Gracie also highlighted Ryan’s coach John Danaher as a huge asset, studying tape and designing customized technical gameplans for each athlete under his tutelage. However, while crediting Danaher’s role, Gracie emphasized that Ryan’s individual obsession is the engine behind his success.
“As long as there’s no one dedicated to that, he won’t win. He won’t. He’s super dedicated,” Gracie explained. Essentially admitting that when it comes to obsession with world-class jiu-jitsu training, no Brazilian has stepped up to match Ryan’s maniacal work ethic.
Gracie heaped praise on Ryan and his coach John Danaher during a podcast appearance. When discussing Ryan’s crushing victories over the elite of the division, Gracie pointed out that his success does not stem from simply overpowering foes.
“He can last longer than his opponents. Even if he’s carrying more weight. His techniques aren’t based on strength,” Gracie stated. He drew comparisons to the featherweight GOAT Marcelo Garcia, whose slight build hid deadly skills. According to Gracie, “If you put 10 kilos on him, it won’t make a difference. His game will remain a technical game.”
Much like Garcia, Gordon Ryan has showcased a keen understanding of angles, timing and leverage to implement his leg lock and choke entries against world-class foes. Even giants of the ultra heavyweight bracket have crumbled under his assault. As long as this technical base stays sharp, Gracie sees no end in sight to Ryan’s dominance.
Of course training time takes a toll, and one day Ryan will likely slow down or retire. Gracie was unaware of Ryan’s reemerging health issues that will see him sidelined through the majority of 2024 during his podcast appearance.