Robson Gracie Jr.’s professional MMA debut has been cancelled. Again.
The younger brother of MMA legend Renzo Gracie was scheduled to compete at Saturday’s Bellator 208 in Long Island, but a 175-pound catchweight bout with Jamal Pottinger was scrapped from the preliminary card after Pottinger missed weight Friday morning.
Gracie Jr., who has attempted to make his MMA debut a number of times since 2015, made weight for Bellator 208, but Pottinger came in 6.2 pounds over the limit. The Brazilian told MMA Fighting he agreed to take the fight, but wanted to make sure Pottinger wasn’t over 185 pounds by Saturday.
All parts involved agreed to a 190-pound limit in the end, he said, but the match was cancelled by the New York State Athletic Commission moments after.
“I was a bit upset at the time, cried a lot,” Gracie Jr. told MMA Fighting hours after the weigh-ins, “But (my MMA debut) was supposed to happen four years ago and didn’t happen. God knows what he does. When it’s not the time, it’s not the time, there’s nothing we can do. But I will remain focused, continue to believe and continue to fight.”
Gracie Jr. expects a financial compensation from Bellator since he made weight, and is looking for a quick turnaround following a smooth weight cut for Saturday's event.
“Everything happened so fast,” Gracie Jr. said. “They offered me three events: November 15 in Israel (Bellator 209), November 30 in Oklahoma (Bellator 210), and December 15 in Hawaii (Bellator 213). The plan was to fight in Hawaii if I had a quick win tomorrow, so maybe Israel is a good idea.”
A second preliminary bout was scratched from the Bellator 208 card due to a botched weight cut. James Gonzalez and Frank Buenafuente came in over the featherweight limit and NYSAC cancelled the bout. All main card fighters made weight Friday morning, including headliners Fedor Emelianenko and Chael Sonnen.