When a skinny Royce Gracie submitted a buff Ken Shamrock at UFC 1 in 1993, it went down as one of the most significant fights in MMA history. The rematch two years later resulted in a draw.
Part III wasn’t something anyone expected, or wanted, to see when Shamrocks is 52 and Gracie is 49, but it happened Friday at Bellator 149.
The trilogy didn’t last long, but did end controversially. It’s not shown in the clip below, but Shamrock caught a knee to the groin. The referee didn’t see it and wasn’t able to step in to give Shamrock time to recover from the illegal strike.
Shamrock then took another knee to the head and Gracie dragged him to the mat. That’s when Shamrock started reaching for his groin in agony while Garcie was unloading punches to his face.
Because Shamrock wasn’t defending himself, the referee stopped the assault.
The stoppage came at 2:22 in the first round.
Shamrock was irate after the fight, accusing Gracie from unleashing the knee to his cup intentionally. What hurt Shamrock’s cause during the fight is that he was slow to react to the groin strike. If he collapsed right when it occurred, the referee would have likely been able to recognize it better.
Shamrock vs. Gracie IV, anyone? Bueller? Bueller? Bueller?
Bellator 149 took place inside Toyota Center in Houston, Texas.
Please click the media player below to watch the highlights:
— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) February 20, 2016
(UPDATED: 2/20/16 at 9:15AM PT)
ESPN.com has provided video of the entire fight, including the knee that appeared to catch Shamrock in the groin: