When Chan Sung Jung, aka "the Korean Zombie" forced Leonard Garcia to tap to a spine lock called "the twister" at UFC Fight Night 24 it was the first time the submission had been used to finish a fight in UFC history.
The unusual move earned Jung a $55,000 Submission of the Night bonus.
He talked about the move after the fight, per Kevin Iole:
"It's something I saw a long time ago on the Internet on video," Jung said. "It's one of Eddie Bravo's moves. It's something I practiced because it looks fun and I do it quite a bit in practice. I have always told people I was going to try it sometime in competition. I wanted to do it in the UFC and I was able to, finally."
While it was a first for the UFC, it's not the first time the move has been used to finish a fight in MMA.
Gerald Strebendt landed what is generally considered to be the first twister finish in MMA history when he tapped Dave Elliot with one in 2004. Jason Chambers tapped Billy Stamp with a twister in 2005. The Chambers-Stamp video is in the full entry. (HT BE reader stingrza). Jason Day tapped out Trevor Stewardson with a twister in 2009, video in the full entry.
Gal's Guide to MMA points out that Shayna Baszler used the twister to beat Keiko Tamai at EliteXC in 2008. And here at Bloody Elbow we have written up Shuichiro Katsumura using a twister variation called the exorcist at ZST 20 in May 2009.
But that does nothing to diminish the awesomeness of Jung's twister on Saturday.
The move is associated with rubber guard guru Eddie Bravo who wrote an entire book on it, called Mastering the Twister. Here's a little bit from my review of that book:
The twister of the title is a neck crank submission Bravo brought to jiu jitsu from wrestling (video) where it's known as the guillotine. As a beginning jiu jitsu student under Jean Jacques Machado, Bravo built his entire game around this submission since he'd mastered it as a wrestler and few of his jiu jitsu opponents were aware of it.
I expect to see more twisters in the future as more fighters get frustrated trying to get the rear naked choke and getting nowhere. It's also the kind of move that fighters with strong amateur wrestling backgrounds should be comfortable with.
In the full entry we'll look at some gifs and KJ Gould will break down Jung's application of the hold, plus videos of almost every other application of the twister in MMA history and the Gracie Breakdown and Eddie Bravo's break down of the move.
Gifs by BE reader Grappo (except the big giant one by KJ Gould).
Take it away K.J.:
The Twister aka The Wrestler's Guillotine is possibly one of the oldest holds in the history of grappling. There's a famous statue of Greek Pankration that has been oft replicated where one fighter is in the process of setting up the other from the cross body leg-ride.
It's still used in wrestling today but not to the same neck twisting degree due to the modern rules which take safety into consideration. A wrestler would use the Guillotine to create legal discomfort with the intention of getting both of his opponents shoulder blades on to the mat to score a pin-fall.
Eddie Bravo took the Guillotine from wrestling and modified and arguably popularised it for use in submission grappling where his master Jean Jacques Machado came up with the nickname 'Twister'.
Chang Sung Jung finishes it perfectly. From the back he transitions from having both hooks in and fighting for wrist control to removing a hook and quickly figure-fouring the other hook to lock up a single-leg control. Jung also part-grapevines Garcia's left leg with his right giving Jung a level of control similar to that of a 'lockdown' half-guard.
Jung maintains upper body control by using his right arm as an under-hook while he adjusts himself into a better position for the hold. Garcia then straightens his arm out and effectively gives Jung his arm likely unaware that Jung was setting him up for the 'Twister'. Jung puts his left arm in front of Garcia's right arm and uses that to get his whole head in front of Garcia's arm. Jung is able to quickly wrap his arms around Garcia's head in a gable grip, but more importantly makes sure there is no space between his chest and Garcia's face. This is important in both the wrestling version and the submission version - if there was still space and you could see Garcia's shoulder it's not on tight enough to really turn the head and coax a pin or a tap.
With the head locked up, Jung is able to drive his hips forward with the 'lockdown' type control to prevent Garcia turning into him and relieving the pressure. This pull-push effect of the head and hip control means you can get the most pressure out of the hold and Garcia is forced to tap
Annotated gif by KJ Gould, click to load:
Eddie Bravo demonstrating the twister:
Bravo narrating the first time he used a twister in BJJ competition:
Shayna Baszler landing the twister on Keiko Tamai:
Jason Chambers busting out the twister against Billy Stamp at Total Fight Challenge 4 September 17, 2005
Here's Jason Day getting the twister on Trevor Stewardson, RITC 35 June 6, 2009
The Gracie Breakdown
Eddie Bravo's breakdown: