Cody Garbrandt probably won’t be co-starring in the next sequel to “Kickboxer.”
Recently, video emerged of martial arts movie legend Jean-Claude Van Damme accidentally kicking Garbrandt in the head during a training session at Team Alpha Male in Sacramento, Calif. Garbrandt explained his side of what happened to Ariel Helwani on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour.
“He just can’t control himself,” Garbrandt said of Van Damme. “He got too excited in there. He was running all over the place like he was on shit.”
Garbrandt, the former UFC bantamweight champion, said Van Damme was out all night drinking with the team the night before, was two hours late to the gym and took an absurd amount of time to warm up for the session. Van Damme apparently wanted to show Garbrandt some moves, but “No Love” didn’t seem to be feeling it, especially since it wasn’t long after UFC 217 when he dropped his title to T.J. Dillashaw.
“What is Jean Claude gonna show me?” Garbrandt said. “I respect the guy. But he’s two hours late, he had to warm up. I was annoyed by the whole thing.”
Then, in the course of light work, Van Damme threw a kick that hit Garbrandt right in the teeth. It made Garbrandt pretty furious at the moment.
“It was just a circus act, to be honest,” Garbrandt said. “I looked over at this buddy and his manager. I was like, you gotta get this guy out of my face.”
Garbrandt said the entire gym stopped when it happened, because Van Damme dropped to his knees and began crying, because he was sorry. Garbrandt, though, said he heard it was not the first time he had done something like that.
“It looked like I punched him and dropped him,” Garbrandt said. “People didn’t know he kicked me. I was just annoyed with the guy and I’m like, ‘all right, I’m done with this fool’ and walked out of the cage.”
Since Garbrandt first spoke publicly about what happened last month, he said Van Damme and his team were unhappy and also apologetic. Garbrandt said they released the video of the incident, but Garbrandt doesn’t “give a shit” about Van Damme and the drama anymore.
However, Garbrandt said there are no hard feelings and he even went to Van Damme’s movie premiere for “Kickboxer: Retaliation” in Los Angeles a few weeks ago. Van Damme, though, was not in attendance, he said.
“He’s an old guy,” Garbrandt said. “What am I gonna do? Pummel him? It’s a lose-lose. We’re cool. I went to his premiere. It is what it is. He’s just a sensitive Hollywood guy.”