In the MMA world the line between what is real and what is just hype can often be so thin that it breaks or blurs easily. Nowhere is this more amply demonstrated than in the video below, which sees Renato Laranja come face to face with Nate Diaz and get into an altercation.
Unfortunately for one half of the dispute, Laranja is apparently fictional – a “crude and arrogant character claiming to be a 27-time world champion who makes outlandish remarks and criticisms about current Brazilian Jiujitsu practitioners and MMA fighters,” according to one write-up. The Laranja character apparently started as an in-joke at Eddie Bravo’s gym but quickly went viral and grew a cult following on YouTube and other MMA fan websites.
Now, none of this is known to the ultra-serious Nate Diaz and so when Laranja and he were booked at an Expo event earlier this year and Laranja started doing his usual Brazilian macho shtick, Diaz was at first nonplussed. Then, he was incensed. And so he tried to start a fight. With a fictional character.
Some of Renato Laranja’s greatest hits: