Ex-WWE star Batista is teaming up with MMA royalty to groom a whole new generation of face-bashers ... with a brand new GYM -- just months after his own pro-fighting career was abruptly cut short.
According to sources, the 6'6" 290-pounder is in the process of opening an MMA training facility in Tampa called Gracie Fighter Jiu Jitsu -- and if the name Gracie sounds familiar ... it's because the Gracie family is credited with establishing modern day MMA.
The gym is currently only open to close martial artist friends ... but Batista and his partner Cesar Gracie -- who trains several top fighters on the West coast -- plan to open it to the public next week.
As we previously reported, Batista was all set to sign with Strikeforce before they were bought out by UFC -- but once the dust settled post-takeover, Batista's deal was dead in the water.
Batista to Open New Ass-Kicking MMA Facility
6/7/2011 3:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
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