By now you may be scratching your head, wondering how two equally successful professional athletes on a parallel career trajectory, who happen to be related to each other, could possibly work together all the time. While their motivation to uplift each other outweighs any competitiveness they might feel toward one another, it doesn’t mean their fight camps go off without any friction.
“When it gets down to it, this camp, because we’re fighting a week apart, there’s a lot of competitiveness between us,” Kyle said in an interview with UFC.com in mid-September. “We both get annoyed at each other and get mad at each other when we’re rolling, but in the end it makes us better.”
“There’s always a level of competitiveness—with anything. Checkers, chess… even in the rounds. Wrestling rounds, jiu-jitsu, whatever we’re doing, there’s always going to be a level of competitiveness. But it’s never malicious in any way where I’m trying to get the better of him. I am trying to get the better of him but in that I’m trying to improve on myself as a fighter and help him with certain things he can improve on — takedown defense, striking, whatever — and vice versa,” Chris said.
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While Chris has the advantage with age, there’s one thing Kyle will always have the upper hand on.
“My mile time has always been better than his has,” Kyle said, finally letting a smirk spread across his face.
“I’ve got no shot,” Chris said, laughing. “I’ve come to terms with the fact that I have no shot, as far as running goes. Maybe, maybe the 100 meter sprint, but anything over 100 meters, he’s got it.”
As the two Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belts make the start on their second UFC contracts, don’t be surprised to see them in more high-profile fights, starting with Chris as he faces off against Derrick Lewis at UFC Fight Night on December 18th.
But whether it’s Chris or Kyle you see making the walk to the Octagon, the other won’t be far behind in tow. It’s been this way for 11 years, and it’s probably not going to change anytime soon.