Robert Lee: Bruce Lee would 1,000 % percent support MMA


The brother of legendary martial artist and movie star Bruce Lee recently appeared at One FC’s Asian MMA Summit to address just how his brother would have felt about modern day MMA. And to no one’s surprise, Robert Lee believes his brother would have supported the sport wholeheartedly:

“Spirit-wise, he would support it 1,000 per cent. It’s what he came up with originally and believed in.” –via Yahoo!

Many regard the legendary Bruce Lee as the true innovator of modern mixed martial arts, as he was famous for formulating his own adaptive style of fighting that mixed many of the most effective arts in Jeet Kune Do. Dana White has shown his respect for Lee in the past and is among the many who believe Lee to be one of our beloved sport’s founding fathers.

It’s interesting to hear someone from his actual family express their perceived support for MMA, because it’s something we haven’t seen too much of. MMA has evolved so much from its early UFC days, when it was regarded as barbaric. Some believe that it truly originated in Japan with Pancrase. Either way, the roads that Bruce Lee paved definitely have something to do with the lofty position the sport enjoys now.

Bruce Lee’s death was a tragic occurrence to all of those involved with the martial arts, and while it’s obvious that he would have been too old to fight in MMA, he may have been quite happy to see where fighting has gone. Robert continued on about his famous brother:

“I have small kids coming up to me and asking me how Bruce was like… can you imagine? People just love him for what he did. And what he did was a lot.”

Indeed he did do a lot for the martial arts. 

  • He was basically doing early versions of it without realising.

    Bruce Lee was known for trying to take the best of everything and using it instead of having to stick to ineffective and pointless techniques… basically the foundation of MMA.

    There is no other human being I would have wished had been in this generation so he could venture in to MMA but I guess he wouldn't have been an inspiration to millions and probbaly many of the best Mixed Martial Artists would have never even looked in to it.

    • Of course if he was in our generation we might not have MMA at all, everything originates with Bruce. No Bruce = no Van Dam = No Blood Sport = no MMA 😉

    • 1,000% agree 🙂

  • "Be water, be formless, water when put in a teacup becomes the teacup, water when put in a teapot becomes the teapot, water can flow or water can water my friend."
    He knew what he meant when he spoke those words over thirty years ago, and now all of us are in awe and just learning now.

    • Well said Murph

    • Didn't no one point out to him we are 90% water? Only joking of course.

  • Top 5 guys I wish were around for MMA (in no particular order):

    Masahiko Kimura, Lee Kemp, Aleksandr Karelin, Dan Hodge, and Bruce Lee

  • Bruce lee would be proud. If anybody read Tao of jeet kwon do. It was basically a war cry for modern mma. to drop the styles and division and hard set old school method of thinking. to find the ultimate truth on combat and expression.

    I think one thing often left out is Bruce lee's role for Asian's in north America. For a long time asian's in north America were closed off and resentful of the west. But Bruce opened the doors and let westerns in to understand and explain the difference of culture. He broke barriers of internal racisim and wanted kung fu to be more then just fighting and just for asians. That it should and could be something more.

    I think reading so much of his stuff and him being in a interracial marriage in the 1960's. Bruce would be very Proud to tune into a UFC event. And seeing something that was strictly asian for SO long. Become something for everybody. Look at all the champs. People of all colours and cultures and social standings do martial arts.

    That fight he fought for equality and racial harmony is more important then any fist fight he won in the ring or on the streets.

  • I was in martial arts when Bruce Lee died. That is a testament to nothing except how old I am – I was 14 at the time. At the time I devoured every piece of information I could get on him. My basement work out areas was covered in posters from Chinese magazines. I was a fanatic.

    As I read the article above and the posts I began to wonder who in MMA now is most like Bruce Lee – not in physicality but in personality and attitude. In work ethic it is GSP. In heart it is Frankie Edgar. In creativity it is Jon Jones. In timing it is Anderson Silva. In cold attitude about his opponent in a fight it is Rory McDonald. In that regard it is interesting to remember that he was not well liked by everybody. There were a number of fights related to his teaching of the "lo faun". Many people didn't like his arrogance. Those that could see past all that were able to benefit from having known him.

    My favorite quote from Lee was "Before I learned the art a punch was just a punch and a kick was just a kick. After I learned the martial art a punch was more than just a punch, a kick more than just a kick. After I understood the art a punch was just a punch and a kick was just a kick."

    Tao of Jeet Kune Do is a must read. It is my one Bruce Lee book I won't part with. The rest, however, have to go. Even Bruce Lee moves on in your priorities. If you are interested in a pile of Bruce Lee books send me an e-mail.

  • Bruce Lee would be proud but I also believe he would wag his finger at some of the rules and scoring systems in place today.

  • Hi Michael Stephensen.

    Yeah, I'd like to have those books if you don't mind. I'm a HUGE Bruce Lee fan.


    He was 'About 32'. As Age depends on more than just one factor. What about Health as well? 🙂 Thanks!

  • Address: 41 Buntine Crescent, Isaacs, ACT (Australian Capital Territory), 2607 Australia