October 10, 2002
Translated by Roberto Pedreira
interview took place after Royce's August 28, 2002 fight with Hidehiko
Yoshida. Royce lost at 7:24 of the first of two scheduled 10-minute
rounds, by what was ruled a "失神"
means loss of
consciousness. As the
caption above Helio's picture indicates, Royce was
unable or unwilling to be
present at the post-fight 会見場 [press
conference]. Helio spoke in place of Royce. Royce commented later, here.
Helio: First, I
want to say something. In
my opinion, the fight didn't
referee in this match, I think he didn't have the authority [権限]
to stop it. It is extremely regrettable that he stopped the match. I
think it was really unfair [不公平].
I understand that not everyone in Japan agrees with his action [レフエリーのした行為は、日本の人たち全ての意見ではないと私は理解しています.]
Because I really respect Japanese people I never thought such a thing
would happen [日本人を本当に尊敬しているので、このようなこと絶対にやらないと考えています].
I'm sure everyone in Japan doesn't
agree with the referee's action. I would
like this contest to be declared a "no contest" [ノーコンテスト
] and for that reason I asked the promoters to declare
this fight a "no contest". I want to be clear on this
And also, I think I would like for there to be a new match [あと改めて試合をさせていただきたいと思います].
This isn't a "revenge"[リベンジ]
match, it will be a new
you have some agreement about the referee before the match?
Concerning the rules, we clearly discussed the fact that there wouldn't
be any referee stops. Only the fighters' "seconds" would
be permitted to stop the match. That was firmly stipulated in the
you saying that the match could only be stopped by "throwing in a
That's right. The only one who can stop the match is us 「私たち].
do you think about Yoshida's judo technique? [吉田選手の柔道の技術]
Concerning Yoshida, from before the match it was understood [by Helio or
by the Gracie team, or by people in general], that he was said to be a great
athlete, and it was known [by Helio, etc.] that he was a world judo
champion. So in that way [we] respected him.
the referee hadn't stopped the match, what do you think would have
happened (how would the match have gone)? [展開になっていたとおもいますか？]
not something that I
can forecast. It is a pity
that it wasn't allowed to continue [because then we would know].
Personally, I wanted my son to win.
A circumflex (hat symbol) over a vowel indicates a long
vowel (pronounced the length of two ordinary vowels, or, in practice, with
greater stress). Vowel length is phonemic in Japanese, meaning that an
otherwise identical word with a short vowel has a different meaning from
one wioth a long vowel.) For example, "o" [short o, written お]
has a different meaning from ô [long vowel, usually written おう].
An alternative Romanization convention is to write long vowels with a
石井館長 his name is Ishii
[和義]. Kanchô means
"head of an organization"].
Death match is 死闘. In a previous sentence he used the
word 対決 (confrontation, showdown, face-off, challenge)
Note: Style versus style, or "style challenge match
is 他流試合. By "styles" we mean ryu [流]. The writer
considers Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to be a "ryu". Ryu refers to a
teacher (and staff in some cases) and his teachings (which may be slightly
different, very different, or not at all different from those of a
different ryu). And since Kimura's "style" was Kodokan judo,
Brazilian jiu-jitsu is, to this writer, a style of judo.
***For more interviews with Helio
and Royce, see:
(talks about Yoshida fight, Pedro Valente Jr., and Royce also add their 2
(talks about Sakuraba and Wanderlei Silva)
(talks about K-1 and Ray Sefo)
(before fight with Yoshida. Also Mario Sperry offers exclusive
prediction about the outcome of the match)
(c) 2016, Roberto Pedreira. All
Updated October 14, 2019.