All-time Jiu-jitsu great Gordon Ryan is seemingly happy to stick with just grappling for now.
Although Gordon Ryan is widely considered the greatest ever no-Gi grappler, many wonder how the American would do inside the cage. The five-time ADCC champion is fresh off yet another impressive win against Nick Rodriguez as part of the UFC Fight Pass Invitational stretching his undefeated streak to over five years.
Talking with Ariel Helwani as part of The MMA hour, Gordon Ryan expressed his interest in competing in MMA and revealed that he did begin the preparation process at one point.
“I was actually going to start fighting in 2019. I was actually getting ready,” Ryan began. “I was sparring. I was actually getting ready. I went to a Bellator event and I was talking to some guys from Bellator. I was talking to ONE about fighting MMA and then in 2019, right in the beginning of the year, I fought Joao Gabriel Rocha and I tore my LCL. I had to have surgery on my LCL. So the second I came back from LCL surgery, the focus wasn’t MMA anymore. I was hopping into camp for ADCC because we had 2019 ADCC at the end of the year.”
Ryan would continue, saying that he is comfortable money he earns from Jiu-Jitsu is more than most UFC champions, explaining that his position is too comfortable to leave at the moment.
“So like seven months off surgery”, Ryan said. “I had to compete in ADCC so that was the focus, and then I won the Absolute so now I’m looking forward to 2021 ADCC where I have to fight Andre [Galvao] which ended up being 2022. I just kept getting roped back into jiu-jitsu like, ‘Oh, there’s something more I have to do in jiu-jitsu before I leave.’ Now I’m at a point where I don’t have to leave. I make more money than most UFC champions and there’s no reason for me to get punched in the head every day and then have to fight.” (H/T MiddleEasy)
At only 27 year-old, Ryan has plenty of time to switch over to MMA should he so choose. Such a move would be huge and with his grappling ability seemingly so far ahead of his competition at the moment, Ryan could prove to be an exciting addition to the scene.