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Wallid Ismael vs. Ryan Gracie feud – the facts once and for all

It seems that every couple of months an uninformed Ryan Gracie fan comes on the Internet to talk about the Wallid Ismael vs. Ryan Gracie feud. These fans say things like “Wallid was afraid to fight Ryan,” “Wallid never chocked Ryan unconscious,” “Wallid is a coward,” etc.

So, in order to clear up the confusion, I present this brief history of the Wallid Ismael vs. Ryan Gracie feud:

* In November 1999, Ryan signed to fight Wallid in the January 2000 WEC show, and went to NY to train with Renzo. Wallid delayed signing because he was angling for a fight in Pride. But, no matter, Ryan was in “great shape” and training hard at Renzo’s. Wallid signed the contract to fight Ryan 6 weeks before the show, but Ryan suddenly dropped out because he did not have enough time to prepared for the fight. Ryan was supposedly in great shape, had been training for the fight a month, and he still had 6 weeks to prepare. Nevertheless, he claimed that he could not possibly get ready.

*Wallid and Ryan then signed to fight in the April 2001 WEC show, but that fight fell apart after Ryan got arrested for stabbing a man in a bar fight in February. This is the second case of Ryan dropping out of a fight against Wallid.

*In December 1999, Wallid and Ryan got in a shouting match on Pepe beach in Rio. No punches were thrown. A few days later, Ryan walked into a gym where Wallid was working out. Wallid ran downstairs to confront Ryan. Ryan was afraid that Wallid was going to kick his ass, so he reached into his fanny pack and pretended to have a gun in order to make sure Wallid did not jump him.

*In October 2000, Wallid and Ryan both attended the after party for the Bad Boy fashion show in Brazil. Ryan snuck up on Wallid and tried to sucker punch Wallid from behind. Wallid turned around, put Ryan in a guillotine choke, and choked Ryan unconscious.

Oh, and for the Ryan Gracie jock riders, following are the original news stories that substantiate everything I summarized (with links, of course) in case you want to do some research for yourself.

Wallid’s famous interview with

ADCC 11/7/99:

“Ryan Gracie informed us that he has the contract in his hands and is ready to sign. They also said that Ryan is in great shape and is ready . . .”

Wallid has not yet signed the contract


ADCC 11/11/99

“We weren’t able to get Wallid’s reply but were lucky enough to get a hold of Ryan and he told us the following:’The Paraiba (Wallid’s nickname – a disparaging slang signifying a person from Northern Brazil) is running, he is better off signing, because I am either going to beat him and he is going to make $10,000.00 or I am going to beat him in the streets for free and he is not going to make anything. He said too many things and now he is running. Sign the contract and show up.’. . .”


ADCC 11/12/99:

Wallid told us that he will have a resolution next week and will let everyone know. He is for sure going to fight in January, he just hasn’t decide with whom. He said that “O Pau vai comer em Janeiro” (there is going to be a brawl in January), and that he is going to make his enemies cry and his friends will party hard to celebrate the success.


ADCC 11/13/99:

Wallid Ismail called us to inform us, that he is yet to make up his mind as to which event to fight, but he also said that he will have the big announcement on Monday. He said that he will make a lot of people happy with the decision. He is leaving Rio on Sunday and will arrive in Los Angeles the next day and will start intensifying his training for the fight. Check our news on late Monday, early Tuesday for his BIG announcement . . .


ADCC 11/13/99:

Jamie Levine, the Promoter for World Extreme Fighting show contacted us today with more information about Wallid x Ryan Gracie . Jamie told us that he has to have a decision from Wallid by noon Friday, otherwise he will have to CANCEL that Fight!


ADCC 12/2/99

“Wallid Ismail will face Ryan Gracie in the next World Extreme Fighting in January 15, Wallid told us earlier this week. He is expected to finalize the deal with matchmaker Jamie Levine today. (Levine has left Wallid anxious for the last several days – he’s been out of town on a hunting trip!) Ryan Gracie has been signed with WEF for a long time now, but Wallid was trying for a rematch against Royce Gracie in Pride Grand Prix 2000, but money problems have kept him out. Wallid and Ryan will be in the main event of the WEF show and both are training hard. Wallid is in California now and some of his teammates will fly there to help him train. Look for a very high profile WEF event in Rome, Georgia!”


ADCC 12/10/99

“Jamie Levine, WEF matchmaker called us toady in regards to comments Renzo Gracie recently made on E-Yada’s netcast No Holds Barred program. Jamie says that despite Renzo’s apparent second thoughts about letting Ryan Gracie fight Wallid Ismail this coming January 15th, WEF has a signed contract obligating him to do so. Wallid now, according to Levine, is also committed on paper. As of Thursday night, Levine was trying to contact Renzo, who is handling Ryan, to straighten the matter out. “That fight WILL happen,” Levine told us.

“It is known that Wallid has gone to considerable expense to fly trainers to the US for the bout. We’ll have more on this soap opera as it develops.”


ADCC 12/11/99

“The Wallid x Ryan soap opera continues. Renzo contacted us and told us that ‘Ryan is already in Brazil, he had been training here for four months and Wallid was playing games, trying to get a fight in Pride, and that now that the Japanese have rejected him he signed. The problem is that it was too late, beyond the deadline. Ryan left his life in Brazil to train for this fight, he was here for four months and he had to return to take care of his affairs there. They can fight in April’. . . Wallid called us and he was fuming, he said that “they are all cowards, they can’t do that to me now. I have brought 7 people from Brazil to help me prepare, personal trainer, a boxing trainer and several sparring partners, all this cost me money. Backing out at this stage is shame full and they are not going to get away with that. His dad was saying that I was running away from the fight, who is running now?'”


ADCC 12/18/99

“Let us recap: Wallid Ismail and Ryan Gracie have a little family pride/personal feud thing going. Both said they wanted to fight each other. Wallid went as far as to say he would fight Ryan for free. WEF’s matchmaker Jamie Levine went to extra lengths to find backers to put up money beyond the scope of his show’s budget and Ryan signed to fight (and began to train
for) the January 15th bout. Wallid however decided to play a little game with the promoters of PRIDE and see if he could play Levine’s offer off against them for a bigger purse. It backfired. Wallid passed his deadline to sign, Ryan (says H ) quit training for the fight, and Wallid had to scramble to get the original deal from Levine. Now Wallid has signed and is training to fight Ryan Gracie. But hold on! Now Ryan Gracie is making excuses about why he won’t fight. He says he had quit training because Wallid didn’t sign his contract and he won’t be ready by January 15th, though he would have had six weeks (which is what it takes the average fighter) to get prepared, besides which he had presumably trained very hard until only a few weeks before.”


ADCC 12/24/99

“Wallid Ismail versus Ryan Gracie is officially off for January, 2000. The fight will take place in April on the following WEF card, so now fans will endure another three months of the soap opera before seeing if the two actually fight.”


ADCC 12/28/99

“Ryan Gracie and Wallid Ismail almost gave a preview of the WEF main event for April yesterday. They crossed paths on Pepe Beach and the meeting was 100% predictable. They started bad mouthing each other and almost fought on the spot. After some intervention they went home, thank God!”


ADCC 12/30/99

A rumors is running rampant about an incident that happened in a Gym in Rio involving Wallid Ismael and Ryan Gracie and the alleged use of a gun. Since this is serious business we felt it was in the best interest of everybody to obtain an account from sources close to the whole situation. We turned to Luca Atalla from Gracie Magazine. We also contacted Ryan Gracie and he said that Alexandre “Soca” Carneiro was there at the time of the incident and here is their account of the story:

The day before yesterday, Ryan was going in to the Academia da Praia Gym in Barra da Tijuca, Rio de Janeiro. When he arrived there Wallid Ismael was waiting for him and challenged him to a fight. Ryan said that he wouldn’t fight there because they were both sponsored by the Academy and that it was disrespectful to do so there but he’d be willing to fight the next day at the school behind closed doors. Wallid didn’t back off and started to charge at Ryan. Ryan reached into his fanny pack and said you better stop, you’ll have to wait until tomorrow and then a lot of people left. There was an of duty police officer from the Policia Civil of Rio de Janeiro, Officer Reis (also known as Rambo) who was working out at the Academy at the time and officer Reis went over to Ryan and demanded to look into the fanny pack. He opened it and all he found was a shaving kit and deodorant! Ryan stated to me that he hates guns and doesn’t want anything to do with them, and that he is usually at the other end of them.

We then contacted Luis “Bebel” Duarte from Carlson Gracie Team who was there himself and said that he didn’t see any gun but that no one was sure whether there was a gun or not, and no one was going to pay to see. He did say that every time Wallid went towards Ryan that Ryan reached into his fanny pack. Bebel stated that he doesn’t condone either ones attitude and we both agreed that this is not good for the sport.

Kid hates to bring up these kind of stories because they present a bad side of a great sport, but these things are happening and we felt that we had to report the facts.

A little later today we spoke to Soca as well, who saw the whole incident, and he confirmed that there was no gun involved, period . . .


ADCC 1/3/00

“Wallid Ismail and Ryan Gracie signed their contracts for next April’s World Extreme Fighting on the Hora da Luta television program three days ago. No shots were fired.”


ADCC 2/14/00

“TV Globo in Brazil has reported that Ryan Gracie was arrested today for stabbing a man in a night club called Ilha Dos Pescadores (Island of the Fisherman). The nightclub is just west of Rio.

“The victims name is Marcos Vinicius. Apparently, in a brawl involving as many as 30 persons, Ryan stabbed Vinicius in the stomach and delivered several headbutts. The Police said Ryan the fled to his home town – Sao Paulo, where he was taken into custody without further inccident. No further word on the condition of Vinicius was available.

“Ryan is the brother of Ralph and Renzo Gracie and the half-brother of Charles Gracie. He is noted for his high-profile grudge match with Wallid Ismail which was to be resolved on a future WEF fight card, but which will now most likely be put on hold. Ryan is also infamous for an incident in which he reportedly bit off an opponent’s ear in a challenge match. We at ADCC will keep you posted on further developements with this story!”


ADCC 2/20/00

Yesterday, the chief of police Napoleao Salgado put together all the accusations against Ryan Gracie.

Sought as the villain of the riot at the Ilha da Fantasia nightclub, Ryan Gracie, in his statement to the police, said that all happened because of an heroic gesture. The fighter – accused of attacking (punching) Mauricio Tadeu Carneiro Lima, president of the Jiu-Jitsu League, and wounding with a knife the sales rep Marcus Vinicius Da Rosa last Sunday night, said that he was trying to stop a man from being beaten, when the riot started. He gave his version in his statement yesterday, at the police department.

According to him, Marcus had the knife and tried to stab him. Ryan denied that he hadpunched the president of the League, at the same club, a few moments before the incident. Ryan’s father, Robson Gracie, said that he received information that Marcus was connected to drug dealers and was setting up an ambush to kill Ryan.

The chief of police said that he will wait for Marcus statement to clarify everything. In his statement Ryan said that he was at the club when he saw a group of around fifteen men chasing a guy he did not know. The fighter then went to protect the man, afraid that the group would kill him. (Note from Carioca: Things like that are becoming commonplace in Rio.) That’s when Marcus, whom Ryan says he never met before, called out to him and displayed the knife.

“I don’t use knives. We fell down on the ground and people from his group started to kick me on the head. We rolled and he got cut with his own knife,” Ryan said. He also denied that he had participated in the siege of a convenience store.

“I am always being provoked because there are way too many guys out there that want to show off and become famous through me. I am almost like Billy the Kid. Everyone in the west wants to defeat Billy the Kid because he was the best. With me it is the same. If the guys loses to me, no problem. If he wins, he beat Ryan Gracie,” said Ryan.

According to the Jornal do Brasil, yesterday’s edition, they (the newspaper) are starting today to keep records. Records include: Name, Address, Rank, School, Phone numbers, Competition records. They call it the “Fighter’s Database” …

* * *

Behind the mess involving jiujitsu fighters at the night club FANTASY ISL

AND, there is a much worse combat: discrimination against homosexuals. The president of the Rio de

Janeiro Jiujitsu league, Muricio Lima said that he was attacked by Ryan Gracie because of a letter, published in a jiujitsu magazine (note from Carioca: O Tatame), where he accused Ryan’s father, Robson Gracie, of being prejudiced against homosexuals. Thanks to this letter, Mauricio was given a homage by the gay magazine SUI GENERIS. But, according to Mauricio, that got Ryan really mad..

“I criticized his father, and Robson did not retaliate. I don’t get it. At the night club, Ryan said I was bad mouthing his dad and punched me in the chin. I didn’t fight back.” – said Mauricio Lima.

After learning about what Mauricio said to the police, Ryan said, Ironically: “Saddam (Mauricio’s nickname) is an amoeba, and idiot. I never said anything about gays. Only thing is, during my TV show (Ring Heroes), we joked, when a guest of the show said that Mark Kerr looked a little feminine. I have nothing against gays. Saddam, for example, has a candid, delicate soul. Now, if he is gay or not is not my business. Personally, I think homosexualism is an ugly thing, two hairy men touching each other, . . ugh. Now, two women having sex is ok!.

* * *

Robson Gracie, president of the JiuJitsu Federation, criticized Wallid Ismael who had made declarations against his son and even got into a fight with him at a tourney last year. He winked to Ryan and stuck out his tongue, provoking him. I don’t say that Wallid is gay, but I personally would not like to have a gay son. There are, though, brilliant individuals who are gay. Some are great artists . . .

Wallid, who has a fight scheduled against Ryan for the end of May, challenged: “If his son is so Macho, I wanna see if he is going to show to fight. Last time, he ran away”


ADCC 3/27/00

Wallid, what are you doing here in California?

Man, I live here. Here and Brazil. I’m here for about three weeks. I’m here to try and give Royce a rematch. He won’t give me one! His cousin Ryan is the same way. He keeps saying, “I am going to beat Wallid.” First in January, then I need more time to train. Ryan spent only ten days in jail. Man he rested in jail. He is not tired he is afraid I will do to him what I did to his other family memebers. Only worse becuase this is Vale Tudo! Royce on the other hand I used to respect. I used to talk good about him. Now I can’t talk good about him. This guy is chicken shit of me. He won’t fight me. This is bullshit!


ADCC 9/20/00

Sources in Brazil have told us of a fight that occurred between Wallid Ismail and Ryan Gracie. It seems that on 9/18/2000, according to witnesses Wallid was speaking to some friends at a party when he was approached by Ryan. Ryan then allegedly struck Wallid in the side of the face from behind. Wallid then turned and Ryan shot in. He was put into a guillotine and choked unconscious by Wallid. This is the story coming out of Brazil at this time. We will update you on future news of this when we receive more information.


FC Fighter 10/3/2000

Rio and São Paulo are getting too small for Ryan Gracie and Wallid Ismail. After spending time training in L.A., Wallid came back to Brazil straight to São Paulo (he lives in Rio) to take part in the summer fashion parade of his sponsor Bad Boy. As soon as he got there, he met Ryan, his #1 enemy, backstage at the event. The bodyguards had to act many times because both spent the whole night provoking each other. In the end of the night (around 1 am), the worst happened. Wallid gives his side of the story, “He pretended to fight me to make the security guard hold him. I told them to let him free because he was not enough man to fight me face to face. When they set him free, he disappeared. I turned around, and while I was talking with Leonardo Vieira (Alliance black belt), he came from behind me and tried to punch me. I was lucky enough to feel that something was strange, and turned around in time to escape his punch. After that, he tried to put me down but I got a guillotine choke on him and left him unconscious.” Witnesses say that Ryan was drunk and unable to fight. It doesn’t matter because the worst happened and the case reached O Globo, the biggest newspaper in Brazil, and once again Jiu-Jitsu was on the police pages. Everybody is praying to see this situation resolved. Promoter Sergio Batarelli is interested in finishing the problem in the right place: the ring.

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