Retired professional MMA fighter and BJJ Black Belt Enson Inoue talks about his time spent with Grandmaster Relson Gracie, being humble as a black belt, his MMA career and the Yakuza. He also tells the story of the infamous 1998 Pan Ams brawl. Click “read more” for show notes! 


  • Origins
  • How bullying lead him to martial arts
  • Dealing with native Hawaiians as a non-Hawaiian growing up
  • His introduction to martial arts and finding Jiu-Jitsu
  • Training with Grandmaster Relson Gracie
  • The paradigm shift that Jiu-Jitsu caused in martial arts
  • His favorite memories with Grandmaster Relson
  • The first time he used Jiu-Jitsu in self defense
  • His recent self demotion to purple belt
  • Being humble as a black belt
  • His favorite areas in Jiu-Jitsu to work on currently
  • How coming back to BJJ after retirement has improved his health
  • The humorous incident at a local UFC Gym
  • His bracelet company Destiny Forever
  • His return to college
  • His charity work with the Fukushima victims in Japan
  • Walking across Japan
  • The 1998 Pan Ams brawl
  • His falling out and rekindling with Grandmaster Relson
  • His first MMA fight
  • Fighting King Zulu
  • Training in Japan with fighters and professional wrestlers
  • Yakuza involvement in MMA in Japan
  • His Yakuza run-in story
  • The best guys in Japan at that time
  • Fighting for Pride FC
  • Can rules in MMA put in place for safety actually increase injuries?
  • The respect fighters get in Japan vs in the US