As the fights took place at the center of the Octagon this past weekend at UFC San Antonio, a fun little wrestling exchange was happening backstage. In an Instagram video he uploaded, former middleweight champion Luke Rockhold engaged in a playful tussle with NBA great Tim Duncan.
The exchange was more light-hearted than competitive. Rockhold was even left impressed by the strength of the 46-year-old Duncan, who’s listed at 6’11” and 250 pounds.
“He’s still strong as f–k. Aren’t you supposed to be retired?” Rockhold was heard saying.
Rockhold’s striking coach Jason Parillo became the next target, who then gave Duncan a light smack on the head before running off laughing.
Duncan, who is also a two-time MVP in his 19-year stint with the San Antonio Spurs, was known for his formidable presence in the post during his playing years. He retired in 2016 and returned as an assistant coach for the Spurs from 2019 to 2020.
The five-time NBA champion also took up kickboxing after retiring from basketball. Here are a couple of clips from around five years ago.
As for the 38-year-old Rockhold, he came out of a short-lived retirement and signed with BKFC in early March. He will make his bare-knuckle boxing debut at BKFC 41 on April 29 against fellow UFC vet Mike Perry.
About the author: Milan Ordoñez has been covering combat sports since 2012 and has been part of the Bloody Elbow staff since 2016. He’s also competed in amateur mixed martial arts and submission grappling tournaments. (full bio)
About the author