Bas Rutten is a member of the UFC Hall Of Fame and this July, the legendary Maurice Smith will also be in the very same hall of fame.
The legendary MMA fighter says that it is awesome that Smith is going to be a part of the fraternity known as the UFC Hall Of Fame.
“We started right from the beginning, so it’s a freaking awesome thing to see a guy like him getting inducted,” Rutten told MMA Junkie Radio.
Rutten and Smith fought twice in the Pancrase promotion, with Rutten coming out victorious in both of those battles.
Even though both men would eventually make their mark in the UFC, the legendary Rutten was a fan of Smith before his UFC days.
“This is a guy who fought for a long time,” Rutten said. “I saw him fight Thai boxing against Peter Aerts and all these other Dutch guys in Holland. He was the first Thai boxer from America who also did well overseas against other guys. You had a few more, but there were not many. Don Wilson, that was a really good one, but then Maurice Smith was right there in that same line. For a guy to do that at his age also – he’s older than me – and then start (in MMA), I think it is just because he was already a world champion in Thai boxing. He knows what to work for, and what happens is you realize, ‘OK, I have to learn this game.’ He started learning the game. He started putting himself in contact with guys like Matt Hume. This is just making yourself better. When somebody does that, yeah, the path is going to be paved out for them, and boom, suddenly he’s a world champion.”
The 2017 UFC Hall Of Fame Ceremony takes place on Friday, July 6 during the UFC Fan Expo in Las Vegas, Nevada.
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