Tonight, the world's most prestigious submission grappling tournament kicks off in Beijing, China. The Abu Dhabi Combat Club Submission Fighting Championships (called ADCC for short) comes along once every two years and this year's edition is split over two days (Saturday/Sunday in China and Friday/Saturday for those in the US/Brazil, due to the time zone difference) .
Depending on which source you believe, the matches start at either 8:30 PM ET or 9:00 PM ET. The uStream channel has split the stream into three mats and three streams, which can be purchased individually for $20 (so $60 for all three). Channel 1 is here. Channel 2 is here. Channel 3 is here. Going into the event, there is no word on what the stream quality is, but rest assured that I will make it a priority to communicate my experience with it here and on my Twitter (@DefGrappler).
The rules are fairly simple and can be mostly summed as the following: two submission grapplers on a 30 ft square mat, 10 minute rounds in the early going, no points for the first half, no strikes, no grabbing of clothes and submissions can be slammed out of or finished off the mats.
This year's edition had several qualifier tournaments held worldwide to fill most of the spots and the rest filled by invite. Due to the unusually opaque nature of the ADCC media efforts and the normal athletic uncertainty of the health and ability to attend of the invited grapplers, the final selection of the divisions was unknown until this week. This hampered any significant preview efforts, but the brackets are now out and the favorites, dark horses and out-of-left-field candidates are being anointed as we speak.
There are many past, present and future stars in submission grappling or combat sports in general; the biggest Q-rating/needle mover at this edition is likely Benson Henderson, the former UFC champion, who is competing in the 77 kg division. Dong Hyun Kim, fresh off his brolic knockout of Erick Silva, is in the 88 kg division, which is kind of amazing since in the last few weeks he's gone from Korea to Brazil back to Korea and is now in China.
The brackets are linked below, courtesy of the ADCC themselves:
Men's 66 kg
Short preview: The two favorites are Rafael Mendes and Rubens "Cobrinha" Charles. They've been in the finals together at ADCC 2009 and 2011, most of the world championships and several other major tournaments. They mostly destroy everybody else at the weight class in ways that make them look like adults among children. However, Augusto "Tanquinho" Mendes is perhaps the best athlete at the weight class and has shown a wily capacity to eke out points win against the very best on their slightly off days. He's up against Justin Rader, who is a very tough out himself, so that could be a decider for spoiler. Joao Miyao is a new black belt, who alongside his brother, Paolo, can best be described as a"combat ant". His unusual style revolves around taking the back and being nearly immune to footlocks, but he may be out-muscled by Rico Vieira or Rafael in the semis.
Men's 77 kg
Short preview: Leo Vieira is a legend in the sport. He could retire now and be remembered as one of the all-time greats for his amazing throws, immense athleticism and highly entertaining style. However, he's back in a very tough division and may not be the favorite to win, despite a second place finish at ADCC 2011 to Marcelo Garcia. Kron, the son of Rickson Gracie, gave Marcelo Garcia a hell of a fight in ADCC 2011 and is probably the favorite due to his relentless guillotines and crushing pursuit of armbars. Lucas Lepri is astoundingly good and astoundingly underrated every time out. Benson is probably the best conditioned athlete here, but his submission defense may not be enough to win points victories and his attempts at going for subs himself could leave openings. DJ "Open Warrant for His Arrest on 3rd Deg Sexual Assault" Jackson is a tough out, but has to go through AJ Azagarm and Leo Vieira to get to the semis. Otavio Sousa, despite being a multiple time world champion, probably isn't rated as a medal favorite by many and could surprise everyone with a finals run if things fall his way. I pick Lepri/Kron as one semi and Otavio/Leo for the other with an Otavio/Kron final and Kron gold, but it could go any number of ways.
Men's 88 kg
Short preview: Andre Galvao won this in 2011 and has moved up to the Super Fight, leaving the division open to the contenders. Pablo Popovitch is one of the most successful competitors in ADCC history and was a bronze medalist twice at ADCC 2011 after losing to Galvao both times in the 88 kg and Absolute divisions. He's the clear favorite, despite this being the most stacked bracket in the tourney. Romulo Barral is an oft-injured genius of grappling and has long, lanky legs that can entrap even the best of opponents. He's up against Stun Gun Kim, who could smother his way if Romulo is having a very bad day. Lucas Leite has perhaps the best half guard outside of Bernardo Faria, but has to go through Romulo to get to the semi-final. Claudio Calasans is also another tremendous competitor and he'll blast through his first round match to get the winner of the match between Keenan Cornelius and Clark Gracie. That might be a toss-up despite Keenan's better overall game, as Clark's found an incredible ability to get his omoplata and sweeps going in high profile matches again and again. Rafael Lovato Jr. is the dark horse to beat everybody. His guard is maybe the second best and his top game is perhaps the second or third best in the tourney - if he can stay out of leg locks and work his game, Lovato can win this. I pick Popovitch for the gold after a squeaker against Lovato and a dominant stifling of Romulo in the finals. Lovato for bronze over Calasans.
Men's 99 kg
Short preview: The thinnest division in the men's side. Dean "The Boogeyman" Lister is the clear favorite, having won this in 2011. Joao Assis came in second that year and is here as well. Leo Nogueira (the bigger one, as there's one in the 66 kg division) has had a considerable amount of success in the gi. I'm not sure what his no gi game looks like, but he could get a match going against Assis in the semis. James Puopolo is a tough competitor, but I'm not sure he can take Lister's footlocking attacks for a full ten minutes without his defenses breaking. Lister for gold, Assis gets the silver and Puopolo for bronze.
Men's Over 99 kg
Short preview: Marcus "Buchecha" Almeida is the best competition grappler on the planet right now. His combination of immense athleticism (think Gustaffson/Davis or just a smidge below Jones), extremely high pace and unorthodox tactics have led to an enormous collection of big time wins at major tournaments for the past year and a half. He should win this, but Vinny Magalhaes, the 2011 winner could make this interesting. Vinny's a fairly good athlete himself and has exhibited a touch for the dramatic wins and escapes time and again in both grappling and MMA (although he's had a bad run in MMA lately). Joao Gabiel (Gabriel de Oliveira up there on the bracket) is a BJJ wunderkind and a tremendous youngster. But he's a youngster and I'm not sure he can steamroll the veteran Vinny in a semi-final match-up. Orlando Sanchez is a human bowling ball and could be very, very tough for anyone to budge. Cyborg Abreu is the second best athlete in the division, but he's very inconsistent with his results as he'll stick to his favored tornado guard or blatantly not care about points, while doing exactly what he feels is the most entertaining. He won't get Schaub'ed here, but Orlando is a tough out and Buchecha has stomped him a few times already. Almeida for the gold, Vinny for the silver and Cyborg for the bronze.
Women's below 60 kg
Short preview: This is most likely going to come down to Michelle Nicolini and Luanna Alzuguir. Nicolini has the slightly better track record - although Luanna is certainly a force to be reckoned with - and particularly likes ankle locks, so I'll pick Nicolini to win a decision after ripping through the first couple matches.
Women's over 60 kg
Short preview: Gabi Garcia will win again - this time with a display of true elite black belt skills. Tammy Griego could have made a run to the finals if she was on the other side of the bracket, but she'll try to play her unusually spinny game against the biggest, strongest competitor the women's game has ever seen and lose. Fernanda Mazelli could upset Penny Thomas if the match goes the right way and get to the finals. Watch for Gabi pulling guard and getting lightning fast armbars. She's done it before and could do it here before switching to the Plan B of side control keylocks.
Super Fight #1: Fabio "The General" Gurgel vs. "Ze" Mario Sperry
Two large sized legends known for their punishing top games and coaching acumen. Sperry won a slopfest against Renzo Gracie at ADCC 2011 (sloppy because the footing was slick from the ice underneath the mats melting) and has been active with the Blackzilians as well as his home team. Gurgel has run the main Alliance camp for years and his pool of active competitors is much larger than Sperry's. I pick Gurgel by points, but it'll be a stand-up battle for a while before the ground game comes into play.
Super Fight #2: Andre Galvao vs. Braulio "Carcara" Estima
Estima won this battle of Gods of War at the 2013 Worlds this year in a hotly contested match (video). Braulio also triangled Andre in the ADCC 2009 88 kg finals and went on to beat Jacare Souza in the ADCC 2011 Super Fight. However, Andre has been on a competition tear since then and has only dropped a few matches since (to Buchecha, Braulio and a couple others). This is a toss-up and both grapplers could win this by submission or points. Braulio has the penchant for footlocks that the ADCC format enables considerably, but Andre could get the back or an armlock. It's a true super fight and could be the highlight match of the tournament.
The last edition in 2011 showed us just how frighteningly beastly Andre Galvao had become after turning away from MMA and towards full time submission grappling with his double golds in the 88 kg division and the Absolute (openweight) division. This one will probably give us Marcus "Buchecha" Almeida adding a brace of medals to his rapidly growing collection with some flat out ridiculous athleticism and submissions - you know, like he normally does at every major tournament these days. However, there are other stars to watch in each division. Pick your favorites and cheer them on. This could be the last ADCC, given how lackluster the promotion and media efforts have been from the ADCC organizers.
Live Blog: I'll be on the scene at 8:30 PM ET and sign off when the tourney ends for the day, but it's more likely that things will kick off at 9:00 PM.
8:43 PM ET: No stream. Periodically, pictures of ADCC 2011 cycle through and they're crystal clear. However, no video has yet appeared or any audio.
9:01 PM ET: JSho, the longtime forum presence, has dug up a schedule: http://i.imgur.com/OR26F2l.jpg It is sort of informative, but really isn't an actual schedule. It's more like the general goalposts of a strategy with the actual mat assignments and divisional times being tactically up to the organizers ad hoc.
The video is intermittently cutting in in what appears to be good fashion, but the angles are being adjusted. So we've got nice views of the floor mat, the ceiling, someone in a black jumper and jeans and the "Now we are preparing for Live streaming... Please keep waiting until we will be ready" cue card. Wonnnnderful.
9:11 PM ET: Video and audio now. However, it's the same video for all three mats right now. Not sure what's up with that. Very clear video right now.
9:15 PM ET: Vinny Magalhaes up first in +99 kg. Wei Yang Bo is his opponent. They cautiously gripfight standing and Vinny appears to be the aggressor. Vinny drops to guard, goes to rubber guard and locks up.
Dean lister on a mat, Vinny goes for an omoplata and is off the mat proper. He's now in top of guard and they'll reset in the middle. Joao Gabriel appears to be up as well.
Dopp on top in half guard. Vinny drops from top to go for a heel hook and cinches it up super fast. Quick win for him with zero attrition, really.
Dopp back up on the feet and Joao Gabriel being very cautious. Gabriel gets a takedown, but is now dealing with a guillotine for a bit. He pops free. Dopp was briefly in side control, but got up and went into the half guard. Antwain Britt is up on Mat 2 now. Gabriel on 3 and Dopp on 1. Gabriel now in mount after a pass and looking to be real methodical. Lister slowly crunching his opponent from side control.
Britt's opponent pulls guard and goes for a kimura. Britt staying based and calm. Lister back to the feet after not feeling the sub opportunity come. Gabriel just waiting and pressuring from mount still. Britt moves to the half gaurd. Dopp deals with a clinch by going to the ground in top half and passing fast to side control. Britt defending a kimura by clinching his own hands and now pulling upwards. Doesn't look serious. Gabriel looking to take the back of his turtled opponent, using seat belt control. Britt still dealing with kimura.
Dopp back to standing. Gabriel has the back and is going for the RNC. Britt kinda being boring. Dopp just standing and dealing with the 10th Planet guy (AA are his initials, I know that). Mat 3 is frozen I think.
Gabriel does get the RNC, while the other two carry own. Britt is in half guard with no kimura threat now.
I missed what the Britt match ended in. Buchecha now on. I also thought Dopp was Lister. Oops. Buchecha standing as his opponent plays guard. Robby Donofrio and his opponent are on Mat 2. Buchecha being very calm and periodically going into top half and then returning to his feet. Dopp has head control on the 10th Planet guy and gets swept by a keylock as he goes for a takedown. Buchecha fending off halfhearted leglock attempts.
Dopp scrambles out. Going for a front choke, but it slips and he's stuck in bottom half, now to guard. Donofrio tied up and Buchecha chilling in the open guard, steps over for a kneebar or toehold and decides to stand up as it's not there.
Dopp's match is done. Not sure who won with the points. Buechecha is starting to flatten out Friedrich now and then, but pops up to top of butterfly and back to the feet. Donofrio's match is really boring as Sekine basically refuses to engage. Cyborg Abreu coming up on Mat 1 against Martelle. Sekine lets Donofrio do something and gets taken down or swept rather. Cyborg clinches up and pulls guard to butterfly.
Buchecha working something weird. Cyborg quickly shifts to the back and climbs all the way up for an armbar finish. Whoa. Quick work. Sekine is now playing deep half and Donofrio has to bail to the feet. Buchecha on top of butterfly and not expending much energy. Donofrio looking to clinch up and get something going against Sekine. Pulls guard.
Buchecha now trying to clump Friedrich's legs together in butterfly and push to a side. It's too slippery to do that it appears and he's being slow to engage. Now he's putting on the pace! Hops over! Side control and Friedrich shrimps out successfully.
Sekine back to the feet. Buechecha goes for a toehold, by diving from top of guard and gets it! Sekine gets a takedown from the clinch. Sekine now letting Donofrio up and then taking him down again. Seems like he's building a points lead if it's gotten that far into the match. Donofrio can't seem to deal with the bulk well.
Orlando Sanchez coming up against Kitner Mendoga. Orlando is much shorter, but built like a barrel. Donofrio trying to work from butterfly to an armbar or something without success. Mendoga dancing around and Sanchez is beign patient.
I think Dean Lister just destroyed Jin Jang Yang's knee with a heel hook in about five seconds. That was suuuuper-scary and hopefully Yang will be alright soon. A commentor (Mr. Zhang) has some background on the Chinese competitors in the comments if you're up for some more reading.
9:36 PM: The matches are flying in. Ezra Lenon vs Jeremy York and Ottaviano and Lazzarini on now. York is wearing a sweet Scramble rashguard (the Double Dragon homage one). Lenon sits guard. Sanchez/Mendoga is the worst match ever. Lenon goes for a heelhook and doesn't get it. York drops back to his guard and Lenon comes up. The other match is a stand-up affair as well.
Mendoga pulls half guard! Sanchez goes in full brute mode and starts bellying/hipping down in half guard. Lenon trying to get past triceps control and top of half in York's guard. Ottaviano and Lazzarini are still clinching up and slowly moving around. One drops and they scramble slowly to the feet.
Lenon is in mount after a fast pass to the left and is pressuring down in low mount. Looking to get a keylock going. Sanchez uses a burst of energy to try a pass, but Mendoga pulls him back to half guard, while yielding the flattened back. Lenon gets bucked off and York is standing.
The stream skipped a bit and York is now in guard and Lenon is on top. A bit of a headlock/guillotine in the Lazzarini match. Not sure which is which, but the red Venum shorts guy won by the guillotine. Sanchez is doing his half guard boredom thing.
Streams are skipping and all three are now buffering. Ugh.
9:43 PM: I get a brief glimpse of Lenon working from side control to get a keylock on York, but not sure if it's deep enough to go anywhere. Sanchez is in top of half, almost in quarter guard. Appears to have either ridden out hte match or gotten a finish. York has scrambled out of the keylock. Uminski and Puopolo are on the mats also. Puopolo on top of deep half and looking to finish a brabo. Deep brabo.
Lenon and York scrambling a bit more and Lenon passes once more to the left. York's guard just can't deal with the pressure on that side. Puopolo has the brabo busted and switches sides in half guard hunting for a pass. Scrambling around looking for more head and arm chokes.
York is in north/south bottom fending off a keylock and Lenon moves to knee on belly to further gass the opponent. Pupopolo sets up another brabo. Lenon has side control and Joao Assis is now coming up against Liu Wen Bo.
Puopolo on top of butterfly, but has the head controlled. Lenon and York reset to middle. Lenon works a mount to triangle. Whoo. Tough sub to escape and York doesn't. Lenon wins by sub.
Joao Assis working from top of half guard and appears to be in full pursuit of an arm triangle/mount pass. Assis gets most of the way to side control. Narkun/Isaev starts up and both look a bit spirited in how they clinch up on the feet. Assis now trying to smash for the arm triangle and looks to be getting there slowly.
Leo Nog has guard pulled on him and he starts Tozi passing. Assis is absolutely relentless with the arm triangle pursuit and has gotten to quarter mount. Narkun/Isaev still on the feet. Leo Nog moves to half guard and is squeezing the devils out of his opponent. Nog now in side control and resisting an upa to farside.
Assis moves to a back take/seatbelt control off the arm triangle position. Narkun/Isaev hit the ground after a guillotine attempt by Narkun (I think?). Leo Nog besting from side control and Joao Assis has a very deep RNC stuck in. Bo appears to be fighting it until the very last moment possible. Guillotine busted in Narkun/Isaev and Leo Nog now working a mean guillotine from front headlock position. Gets it. Assis lost the RNC.
Narkun/Isaev now a triangle by the guy who was free from the guillotine and he has to tap to an armbar off the triangle. I think Isaev won (white shorts, no shirt, taller guy). Assis very controlled with his hunting of the RNC. Bo trying to wiggle the legs and hips free, but has no luck. Assis shoves him back in firm back control.
Knutsson/Ozawa coming up now. Assis still can't finish Bo.
Popovitch is up against Doorwang Jeon. Jeon has spun under Pop for a leglock and it's good enough that Pablo has to drop back and work his way out methodically. Jeon also wearing the Double Dragon rashguard.
Knutsson is like 2 feet taller than Ozawa. Lol.
Pop out of the leglock and looking to pass left from standing/pressuring open guard. Jeon scooting around looking for the leglock. Assis finally has another RNC deep and Bo fought it off until the last minute. Nice way to face defeat, Bo. Assis was predicted to blow his doors off. Pablo got warned about something - probably clothes grabbing.
Rodrigo Caporal/David Avellan coming up. Knutsson has Ozawa's back on the ground and has the RNC fast. Jeon still spinning and frustrating Pablo's passing attempts. Avellan clinches up and Caporal is trying to use his mobility to stay in the middle and free of the clinch.
Pablo now in top of half and appears to have convinced Jeon to calm down. Looking for a pressure pass. Avellan and Caporal still on the feet. Pablo looking for the usual butterfly guard pressure pass (controlling one leg and sliding around).
Lovato vs. Anzal now. Rafael is much taller. Avellan tries to take Caporal's back standing, but doesn't have the hooks or arm control to stay on and Rodrigo gets away. Jeon starting to crumple under Pablo's pressure.
Stream buffering caused me to miss however Lovato Jr. won, but he did it very fast and very well.
Pablo backed off Jeon and Caporal/Avellan are now standing. Avellan goes for a kimura from standing, Caporal has to flip to defend and nearly has his back taken. They're stuck in a hybrid position and Caporal stands, goes for a bulldog choke on Avellan, but they're out of bounds.
Rustam Chsiev is on (he of the hairy back) and already in top of half. Pablo playing patsycake with Jeon. Caporal and Aellan is back on the feet and clinching up. Pablo trying to pass left as always. Rustam switching sides and going for head control/flattening out opponent.
Pablo wins with his very cautious tactics as time runs out (due to advantages for near passes). Rustam still working from top of half and avoiding armbars. Caporal and Avellan still on the feet and not doing much. Calasans on.
Avellan fending off a back take by Caporal by turtling up. Calasans pulls guard and Caporal working mightily for hooks. Doesn't get it and has to try for something from front headlock. Doesn't get it either and back to the feet. Rustam can't get out of half guard, but isn't in any danger at all of losing.
Calasans working from z-guard. Caporal/Avellan on the feet. Calasans to full guard and chilling out. Rustam working from open guard top to scoop up a leg, I think. Calasans scooting around, trying to work something. Not much immediately open for him, but he looks fairly comfortable doign it.
Caporal/Avellan still on the feet and Rustam still maneuvering to get around the half guard. Man, that back hair is almost a rash guard in and of itself. Calasans in z-guard again and grip fighting to keep his head and arms free. Goes for a kneebar and blows it, nearly has his back taken, flops out and goes for the knee again. Now back to z-guard. Rustam nearly past the half guard, but has to roll out to preserve his balance. Back to the feet. Avellan/Caporal still a boring clinchfest with nothing happening. Calasans now going for closed guard again. Rustam on the feet with his opponent and staving off shots, looking to get a beautiful single and does it. Perfect single leg off a pull and duck under.
Calasans chilling in full guard. Rustam smashing to pass, opponent turtles and rolls free to the feet. Calasans going for his lovely wristlock. Doesn't get it. Opens up guard. Avellan celebrates a win, but it's in overtime due to a points tie or no points tie.
Rustam has head control and is smashing from front headlock. Time has elapsed. He'll win on points. Calasans in open guard and looking to go for a kneebar as the opponent circles out and drops back for an ankle lock.
10:21 PM ET: My internet has died. Frantically trying to get it back up.
10:31 PM ET: Internet back. Kron just murdered Andy Wang. Out cold, smooth walkaway etc. It was so fast.
Stun Gun Kim working from top on Romulo. Leite won quickly as well. I think Barral just got a toehold from elevating Kim above him and swiveling.
Kitaoka and Tonon going. Kitaoka in half guard top and Tonon looking to keep Kitaoka from passing. Lepri in top of open guard and looking to get a pass into side control or a keylock. Kitaoka drops back for a leglock and Tonon has to roll to defend. I think it's loose enough that Tonon can get out and he does. Kitaoka comes up to top of open guard and Tonon moves to half again. Lepri working his beautifully balanced game to stay on top of his opponent.
Tonon and Kitaoka to the feet. JT Torres and Teta Rios going. Rios pulls half and JT keeps his balance. Looking to backstep over to the left or hop over to the right. Teta keeps going for deep half and JT steps his way out easily. Lepri now looking to knee slice his way into firm control of his opponent. Kitaoka has guard pulled on him and is looking to get something going from full guard. Tonon sneaking to the back and gets there! Kitaoka can't turn over or wiggle free yet. Tonon chilling. JT has a guillotine! Teta defends by falling back and has to give up his back. Tonon now on Kitaoka's back looking for the choke.
JT is gripfighting with Rios for an RNC position and has it! Gets the tap fast! Wow, he's looking good.
Tonon now working the RNC as Kitaoka chills calmly. Lepri has slid out and gotten the back of the turtled opponent. Kitaoka had to tap and Tonon wins.
Lepri now working a very nasty looking variation of the brabo on Pyylampi. DJ "Open Warrant for Arrest on 3rd Degree Sexual Assault" Jackson is up against AJ Agazarm now.
Leo Vieira vs. Yamada now. Lepri working from a headlock to get to the back or a choke, while the other two matches are both on the feet and cautiously engaging in some slapfighting.
Lepri now working a headlock, DJ tries for a takedown and they fly out of bounds. Reset in the middle. Leo clinched up with Yamada. Lepri's match has time expire and he wins.
10:44 PM ET: Both matches going now (Leo vs. Yamada and AJ vs DJ) are slow, cautious gripfights on the feet. Otavio Sousa coming on vs Youngnam Noh. Otavio has guard pulled on him right away and he goes straight for the smash. He's controlling the head and looking to inch up into quarter mount before working a pass to side control. Very basic stuff, but hard to defend from him. AJ shoots in and grabs a leg, but DJ hops and they go out of bounds. Leo and Yamada are actually boring me so I'm basically not paying attention.
Otavio now looking to backstep out of the half guard, has Noh flattened out and is inching up his trapped leg. Leo is handfighting with Yamada, who appears only to be looking for trips. AJ shoots in again on DJ, only to go nowhere significant. DJ now trying to reshoot, but they stand and clinch. Leo and Yamada are being talked to for stalling, I think.
Yamada pulls guard. Looking for a heel hook. Leo pulls out and goes into a pass to north/south. Otavio is nearly free and into mount, but no, Noh denies him. Leo is now on the back of Yamada after going north/south and looking for the choke. Otavio is still in the half guard, his opponent turtles up.
Yamada gets out of the choke. Back to the feet. Otavio gets a finish. Leo wins on points. AJ shoots in on DJ and DJ sprawling to defend. AJ now working for headlock. AJ shoots in again. DJ sprawls.
Benson is up! He's looking like he usually does in grappling competitions. Little Leo Nogueira, his opponent goes for a guillotine and Benson falls back to defend. He's out, they're back to the feet.
Rafael Mendes too. He smashes past the open guard and into half guard. Now past and into side control. Benson is on top. Rafa going for a keylock or reverse triangle and has it cinched up already. AJ nearly has DJ's back standing. Benson has Lil Leo's back and is looking for a body triangle RNC. Rafa working the reverse triangle and keylock. Urrrgh.
Benson's RNC technique isn't perfect, so he switched to an arm triangle, which he's holding from bottom of half guard. AJ basically has DJ in back control. Benson now working the headlock and Rafa finishes by reverse triangle. AJ slips off and DJ works to pass.
Benson and Lil Leo are on the feet. DJ passes, but they're out of bounds and reset on the feet. Benson continues to pressure forwards.
Benson working an inverted RNC, doesn't have it cinched tight enough to beat the defenses of Lil Leo. Lil Leo jumps on a guillotine himself! Benson is defending it well and pops out to top of guard. AJ and DJ are battling.
A match of Suzuki and Hirkivangas is on as well. Benson now has the back of Lil Leo. Daaaang crazy match.
Lil Leo going for guillotine, but Benson is chilling out in there. Suzuki is doing some baiting of his opponent, looking for a heelhook. Benson is out of the guillotine and back to the feet. DJ and AJ are stalemating again on the feet. AJ shoots in lazily and DJ sprawls on him.
Benson has the top of turtle after a scramble, but looks to improve and loses the position. More scrambling and Lil Leo nearly has a sweet slam, but Benson spins behind during the scramble. Suzuki chilling in turtle, as his opponent works seatbelt control. DJ and AJ still stalemating and shooting/sprawling etc.
Benson in full mount, nearly gets back, but is shucked loose and stays on top of turtle. Suzuki and the Finn are on their feet clinching up. Benson looking to pass the z-guard of his opponent. Benson has the back of Lil Leo, looking for the RNC.
AJ vs. DJ ends, AJ wins on points. Hard earned battle, but very boring to watch. Leo Vieira has to be happy he conserved a bit of energy and can face a tired AJ.
Benson gets the win! Sweet match. Very nice showing for him.
Suzuki vs. Hirklvangas is still going. The Finn appears to have taken a foot to the eye during a scramble.
Joao Miyao vs. Mark Ramos now. Miyao pulls guard and immediately goes into the human-backpack mode he's so good at. Ramos is fending it off and they head out of bounds.
Suzuki is fending off a heel hook from 50/50. Miyao is rolling around, doing all the spinny shit the Diaz brothers would hate and is inverting to threaten x-guard/get under Ramos. Sasaski vs Rico Vieira now.
Ramos fends off the combat ant's advances and they reset to the middle of the match. Suzuki's match is stopped once more for some reason. Miyao inverting like crazy to get under Ramos, but nothing doing so far. Rico and Sasaski are grip fighting on the feet cautiously. Miyao seems like he might have gotten what he wanted and is now using the hook he's developed to go for the back. Ramos escapes! Back to guard for them
Ramos going for a toehold himself, but the Miyao doesn't react at all. Back to open guard with Ramos standing. Rico and Sasaski standing still. Miyao butt-scooting, Ramos carefully steps into top of half guard and gives up the invert and hook. Miyao trying to leg drag to the back, but Ramos's legs are too carefully placed and they end up back in the guard.
Suzuki's match starts up again. Rico and Sasaski cautiously clinching still. Miyao inverting again and Ramos defending smartly. Joao is baiting a toehold and goes for an ankle lock himself! Gets it! Ramos verbally taps.
Suzuki wins on points against the Finn and Rico drops for a Marcelotine. The guillotine is so tight that Sasaski goes to sleep trying to fight it off.
Cobrinha vs. Hemmings now. Darson pulls guard and Cobrinha double unders/flips him and is in control on top of turtle. Cobrinha goes for the seatbelt control slowly and then drops for a back take. He looks to the ref because it looks like Darson is grabbing his rashguard or something.
Tanquinho and Rader warming up. Cobrinha now fakes the hooks, grabs an RNC, puts the hooks in and shifts to seatbelt as Hemmings frantically defends.
Tanquinho pulls guard and goes for a heel hook on Rader, who calmly defends. Cobrinha still hunting RNC on Hemmings. Rader is out of the heel hook and standing. Tanq butt scoots in. Rader tries double unders, but it doesn't go anywhere. Marcio Andre now battling Sabaruddin also. Andre has pulled guard. Cobrinha in a body triangle RNC position. Tanq in open guard. Andre appears to be hunting either a kneebar or a single leg. Doesn't get either, but he does work a guillotine.
Cobrinha having trouble with Hemmings's active hands and defense. Rader can't get past Tanquinho's legs to do what he wants and Tanquinho can't heel hook him either.
Andre worked a sweep to the top of Sabaruddin, but can't stay there long. They're back to open guard and Sabarudding tries to jump for a keylock. Nothing doing and Andre grabs an omoplata. Cobrinha still working from the back of Hemmings. Andre looking to avoid a heelhook now, Tanquinho still has Rader within his guard and firmly placed there.
Rader high-stepping to stay out of Tanquinho's leglock attempts and resets to the basic open guard. Tanquinho slides in for a half guard/z-guard. Cobrinha has a better choke locked in now. Hemmings has to tap after a few seconds and does.
Marcio Andre back to open guard with Sabaruddin on top, looking for a pressure pass. Andre comes up with a single leg sweep, avoids the guillotine and grabs one of his own. Sabaruddin defends well enough to pop free. Tanquinho now pulling Rader's head down and grip fighting with the free hand in half guard. Rader pops out and stuffs a heel hook attempt, then comes back in.
Baret Yoshida vs. Renier now. Yoshida pulls guard, murks Renier into breaking posture badly and is looking to get on top. Slips off and is under side control/north/south now. Yoshida recovers guard easily. Tanquinho constantly spinning under Rader, who's basically slipping and sliding all over the place to avoid a sub. Rader now tries to headlock and jump past guard. No luck. Yoshida now hunting a sweep off the DLR/half butterfly. Rader nearly passes Tanquinho for a split second, but Tanquinho recovers half guard and is threatening more subs. Yoshida gave up too much space and is on bottom of side control again. No serious danger to him from Renier though. Tanquinho and Rader to the feet.
Andre and Sabarudding are going back and forth, but they're not doing fun stuff. Yoshida is out, spinning inverted and Renier backs off to open guard. Andre wins on points.
Rader looking to bull into a single leg, while Tanquinho carefully gripfights to prevent that. Yoshida butt scoots to Renier to push the action. Rader navigating the gripfight battle to set up the single or headlock, but Tanquinho won't let him. Yoshida trying to get under Renier from half guard and again lets Renier go over the top to side control.
Tanquinho briefly gets Rader spun around and takes him down, Rader bounces back up to feet and Tanq has the bodylock. No joy from it and Rader breaks free. Yoshida recovers gaurd and works the half butterfly. Rader tries a snapdown on Tanquinho and it nearly works, but the out of bounds line approaches and they reset in the middle. Rader has a nice set-up for a single, but the scramble from Tanq is too mighty for it. Back to middle.
Yoshida constantly giving up side control after a half butterfly experiment. He gets out of it all the time, but it's approaching points time. Tanq and Rader gripfighting on the feet still. Rader gets a leg, but can't seize it tight enough to stifle the movement. Renier once more in side control, but can't keep it. Yoshida tries some more half butterfly. Renier backs out to the feet.
Rader and Tanquinho slide past each other and reset. Yoshida now elevating Renier and hunting for a heel hook, goes for head control, then back to half butterfly.
Rader shoves Tanquinho down! Not quite seizing control, but Tanquinho has to scramble to get away and he does. Yoshida sitting up now, not flat on his back anymore. Rader goes for an anaconda! It's serious enough to get Tanquinho to defend and now Rader is on top of Tanquinho's half guard and likely up on points. Tanquinho has to engage from his back and he looks somewhat despondent, while going about his leglock attacks. Yoshida trying for the Miyao-style back take. Has one hook in, climbing up the back and ends up in quarter mount/back take situation.
Gabi Garcia coming up vs. Yurika Nakakura. Yoshida loses on points, despite being the better grappler. Yow, I guess ADCC isn't a time for playfulness and exploring your game.
Rader is coming in furiously at Tanquinho to pass, but nothing is quite doing and Tanquinho nearly seized an arm from an odd position. Tanq tries a guillotine, ends up spinning around to fend off Rader's hopping around, hunting for a pass opportunity. Time runs out and Rader is the winner on points.
Tammi Griego now up vs Ida Hansson. Michelle Nicolini vs. Yan Liu now, I think too. Maybe not. Whoever the Asian woman wearing SUB gear was, she choked the other out cold with a cool guillotine.
Griego trying her spinny shit game against Ida and it's not quite working. Tara White vs. Fernanda now. Fernanda jumps guard.
Now it's Nicolini vs. Liu and Nicolini goes for a fake guard pull/single leg, gets a takedown, ends up on the back of her opponent, who is flattened out, looking pitiful. Tammy still working the deep half on Ida and finally forces her out and back to the open guard.
Fernanda trying to fend off Tara's strength advantage from guard. Tammy has her back nearly taken after a misstep in the deep half and is fending off an RNC. Nicolini working on her own RNC. Tammy back to the half guard and is looking to bump free. Nicolini gets bucked off and Liu is on top of guard in the reset in the middle. Tara White is now in half guard and looking to smash pass. Griego trying for the back of Hansson, who goes for a toehold that isn't there. Tammy comes up to her feet to try for the back take, it isn't there either and they clinch in the middle.
Nicolini working slowly from guard now. Fernanda having trouble doing anything, but hang out in half guard with Tara White. Nicolini breaks posture of Liu and gets the sub.
Tara White finally pops free and goes to mount. Mazelli turtles up to try and avoid that. Tammy has gotten Ida down and turtled. Looking for a back take.
Nyjah vs. Tavares now. Mazelli has popped free of White's back take attempt and is on top of guard. Nyjah has pulled guard on Tavares and is looking to shove a wrist down for a triangle. Ida is back on her feet and clinching with Tammy.
Fernanda can't go anywhere with the butterfly guard of Tara White. Ida and Tammy are scrambling everywhere, careening out of bounds after clinching and tripping. Nyjah has dropped her pace and pressure from guard some and Tavares is hanging out in top of guard, getting good posture.
Mazellin has now started to flatten out White and get past the butterfly. now to north/south. Ida and Tammy is a wild clinch battle that's going all over the mats as one looks for a trip and the other backs off to defend. Fernanda is trying to stifle the invert attempts of White. Tavares is now standing as Nyjah keeps her guard open, but Tavares steps into half guard to the right. Tammy finally exhausts Ida enough to get a back take off a trip to the ground!
Ida defends, gets her shoulders to the ground and looks to roll over. Tammy tries to defend it, but can't avoid the roll over, so she goes up to the feet. Ida trips her and goes for a back take! Wild stuff!
Tavares fended off a leglock attempt by Nyjah and then went back into the right half guard. Mazelli outpoints Tara White after looking rather mortal in the early going.
Tammy is fending off the back take, but can't get her hips out or head up enough. Ida is hanging out and being patient. Goes for a neck crank, to see what's there. Nothing really, but Tammy has to respect it.
Tavares now standing and Nyjah inverts. Sets up a heel hook attempt and Tavares grip fights to defend it. Somehow, Tammy has held on to enough points to win against Ida Hansson.
Now Kristina Barlaan vs. Seiko Yamamoto. Barlaan sits guard. Tavares going nowhere in the halfguard and Nyjah is clearly the aggressor here, despite Tavares coming forwards to sit in the half guard.
Nothing happening in Yamamoto vs. Barlaan. Yamamoto is standing and being very picky about coming in, while Barlaan isn't butt scooting forwards much.
11:55 PM ET: Tavares finally drops for an ankle lock, but it doesn't look like it's there, so she comes up top. Nyjah is now in z-guard. Luana Alzuguir vs. Laura Hondorp now. Tavares jumps past Nyjah's guard and settles into north/south, trying for a side control situation. Nyjah trying to squeeze in her leg for half guard.
Yamamoto still circling around Barlaan and nothing is happening. Barlaan yanks on an arm and Luana finishes with an anklelock quickly from guard. Tavares may have gotten a finish too at the same time and I missed it. Yeah, she did.
Barlaan now goes to spider guard and works for x-guard or half butterfly. Yamamoto crunches her up, but it's not looking like it's effective as a long-term defense. Welp, I'm wrong. Barlaan gives it up and gives up side control.
Jared Dopp vs. Vinny Magalhaes now. Vinny tries a flying armbar and Dopp ducks out of the way. Vinny now in guard, now in deep half. Dopp taking his time very seriously here. Vinny goes for a toehold, Dopp has to turn away, Vinny now in a possible back take/sweep situation. Vinny stands up with a rear bodylock on Dopp. Trips Dopp, Yamamoto working headlock on Barlaan. Vinny still has bodylock. Drops to the mat and goes into DLR guard.
Barlaan can't get out of the headlock and is now allowing Yamamoto to control her from top of turtle. Dopp defends and Vinny works a very nice half guard sweep to a possible heel hook set-up. Dopp handfighting with everything he has to avoid it and Vinny really going after it.
No luck for Vinny there, so he chills out as Dopp tries to stand. He tries once more. Yamamoto and Barlaan are broken up and they are standing once more. Vinny in the 50/50 and comes to the top. Yamamoto drives into Barlaan for a takedown. Barlaan trying for rubber guard. Vinny on top with a leg firmly seized between his own. Barlaan working an omoplata slowly.
Dopp scrambles up and Vinny tries to keep him down. No luck. Dopp circling around and Vinny rests, goes to his back. Barlaan unable to cut the corner on Yamamoto and get the head up.
Vinny going RDLR on both legs to open guard to closed guard. Vinny opens it up and goes to turtle to try and get Dopp to engage more. Vinny comfortable there, but looking to avoid giving anything up.
Barlaan switches to a guillotine, Dopp trying for a kimura and Vinny out-strengths him to turn into top of guard. Vinny pulling his arm out slowly as Dopp has really gone after it. Dopp lets go and stands up. Vinny goes with him.
Yamamoto fending off everything minor that Barlaan throws at her from the guard. Dopp engages into Vinny's half guard and Vinny starts working for a leg pull on either side. Yamamoto and Barlaan warned for stalling.
Joao Gabriel vs. Janne from Finland. Joao has Janne's back fast. Vinny gets the sub, which I missed looking at Janne's really complicated last name. Dangit.
Yamamoto gets a takedown on Barlaan, who still can't do anything to her. Joao has the back after a reset in the middle and works on Janne's arm for an armbar. He loses the armbar.
Janne frees himself and Buchecha is now up against Sekine. Buchecha puts on a superfast pace and gets right to mount. Joao gets to top of half guard. Buchecha is shoved down to half guard and takes a break. He came right out on fire and surprised Sekine. Buchecha pops the leg free and is now in side control, pushing down on an arm, traps it with his leg and looks to pop over, but Sekine defends nicely. Sekine shoves Buchecha back to open butterfly, but Almeida is already working the pass. Joao Gabriel slowly working from top of half, has Janne flattened out and Yamamoto is sprawled on top of Barlaan who has basically run out of gas.
Buchecha starting to flow nicely, has the half guard and is sliding upwards, upwards and driving Sekine down. Time elapses for Barlaan/Yamamoto and Yamamoto moves on. Almeida looking to come into quarter guard, right now. Janne spins for a heel hook on Joao Gabriel, who stands to defend, shoves the legs aside and drops for the back take. Janne looking to turtle. Sekine barely surviving in the half guard right now, getting flattened out and his legs shoved around.
Buchecha slides upwards enough that he can get a keylock on Sekine's farside arm and eventually torques it enough for a tap. That's some mean stuff.
Joao Gabriel finishes an RNC from the back on Janne.
Cyborg pulls halfguard on Orlando right away. Holy shizz, he's finagled his way into a possible armbar on Orlando's nearside arm. Flips Orlando over. Lister vs. Lenon. Orlando gets poked in the eye and the match stops. Lister pulls guard and Lenon stuffs him from reaching the legs. Lister goes for the omoplata. Lister hanging out in the omoplata and Lenon carefully tucks his legs up front, away from Lister as he sits up to defend. Lister trying to climb up Lenon's back now.
Cyborg back to the half guard on Orlando. The Polish guy who beat Puopolo is up now against somebody.
Cyborg uses his halfguard to nearly flip Orlando over again, but Orlando wriggles free and enters into the halfguard again.
Lister lets go of the omoplata and works from his preferred leftside halfguard on Lenon, who is carefully gripfighting. Lenon looks to bust free of the half guard and push Lister's legs off, but cannot quite do so, so goes back down, avoids any leglock set-ups while Dean shifts tactics to a more active halfguard.
Cyborg staying stretched out in half guard, attacking Orlando's nearside arm. It's sort of working, but Orlando isn't expending much energy defending or forcing any progression of position. Lenon trying hard to get past Lister's halfguard, flattens Dean out and backscoots to free the trapped leg.
Orlando starts hopping around and Cyborg shifts around to fend him off. Lenon flips the leg free as Lister briefly opens his half guard up and gets to side control! But it's not for long as Dean shoves him back to half guard and is on his side. Cyborg pushing the head and starting to play z-guard on Orlando. The Polish guy lost somehow to Lazzarini. I wasn't paying attention as it was a standing stallfest in the middle for a long time.
Lister bails on the half guard, Lenon nearly gets a back take and Lister turns to his back and Lenon is in quarter guard. Lister tries to buck up and get Lenon off, but it fails and lets Lenon go to mount. Lister is stuck for a bit, but bucks Lenon up off him and into a heelhook! Whoa! What a comeback! Ezra Lenon had the gameplan of the tourney going and fell victim to the Boogeyman's leglock!
Joao Assis vs the winner of Narkun/Isaev now. Orlando/Cyborg still the same and going. Cyborg has yet anouther armlock setup on Orlando and flips him with it, gets greedy and goes for the armlock as the flip succeeds. It doesn't work and Orlando re-rolls to come up top.
Big Leo Nog vs Knutsson. BIg Leo gets a takedown into half. Joao Assis working from halfguard top and loses it breifly, goes to his guard and half guard.
Big Leo looking to beast the pass to his right, as usual. Cyborg and Orlando stopped yet again for another medical/blood clean-up. Knutsson trying to push Leo Nog's head away, but it's only letting the smash pass work better.
Assis is firmly in the half guard and being patient. Cyborg and Orlando are standing. Leo Nog is dealing with Knutsson trying to take his back with a firm push of the underhook and careful hip positioning. Leo Nog working his way upwards slowly, but gets shunted back to guard. Cyborg dancing around Orlando a bit and goes back into the standing clinch.
Joao Assis still working the dep half. Cyborg shoots for a double, but get sprawled on and shoved back. Leo Nog goes to stand, can't keep his footing and comes back down. Leo Nog going Tozi pass again. Joao loses his half guard and turtles up to chill out. In danger of a back take.
Cyborg and Orlando are still going for a takedown standing. Leo Nog can't work the Tozi and goes back to regular closed guard. Joao Assis now back in the half guard and looking to turn under and come up. Cyborg and Orlando kinda just standing there.
Assis scrambles from the half and gets to a back take position. One hook in, seatbelt control, but not quite the two hooks. Now two hooks! Leo Nogueira to the half guard, Knutsson putting up a mighty fight to keep him from passing. Orlando and Cyborg are still battling for a takedown. Joao loses back control, turtles up and starts to roll out. Gets up top, goes for a kneebar from top of guard. Knutsson tries for a guillotine after standing up, but it fails and Leo Nog uses it to scramble up top and into side control. Knutsson trying to recover guard.
Assis turtled up again after failing with the kneebar, spins into his opponent and drives into him to keep the top of guard position. Leo Nog firmly in side control. Looking for mount.
Assis in top of guard. Cyborg and Orlando still standing around and not doing much. Assis gets a toehold win. Leo Nog loses the side control and they go to the feet and clinch. Time elapses and Leo Nog wins on points. Knutsson did much better than expected. Cyborg wins by referee decision or points or something. I dunno.
Popovitch vs Avellan now. They're so cautious that they both get a stalling warning. Lovato vs Rustam, who has put on a shirt. Damnit.
Lovato pulls halfguard and Chsiev backs out of it, re-engages. Pablo vs Avellan still on the feet and still a stalling thing. Keenan vs Oscar right now, I guess Calasans lost or got hurt.
Chsiev can't do much with Lovato's halfguard and Lovato appears to be waiting for a mistake. Keenan pulls guard on Oscar, flips it into a heel hook battle, spins out of a threat and comes up top. Keenan looking to pass, smashes downwards to north/south. Chsiev and Lovato still feeling each other out gameplan-wise in the halfguard. Keenan now into side control firmly and looking to come up for a keylock or loop choke. Keenan flips Oscar for a back take, but it fails and Oscar is on top of guard. Popovitch is on the back of Avellan after some action.
Chsiev keeps fending off farside keylocks and trying to pass. Keenan flips Oscar and has his back! trying for a choke! Popovitch slowly gets the full hooks in and is squeezing Avellan tightly. Oscar gripfighting with Keenan to prevent a choke. Keenan switches to the body triangle for security. Oscar tries for a last ditch footlock, but Keenan opens his legs up.
Avellan nearly stands and shakes Pablo off, but Pablo recovers. Keenan grabs teh neck and prevents a rollover to guard. Still on the back and in the body triangle control.
Lovato taking more risks with his half guard in the pursuit of the keylock and Chsiev pressures inwards. Neither gets what they want and Lovato scares Chsiev off a bit. They reengage. Pablos still on Avellan's back and Keenan still on Oscar's back. Pablo gets rolled over enough that David can get to top of guard and hafl guard.
Keenan still working the body triangle and chokes. Chsiev still going in the left halfguard.
Pablo sweeps David, grabs ahold of the back in a scramble and goes for an armbar. It's done. Pablo armbars David after a scramble.
Lovato has a triangle locked up! Chsiev slamming to get out, but doesn't! Lovato gets the armbar/triangle! Whoa!
Keenan now working to retain back control on Oscar. Gets shaken off, goes to open guard and works his way to a brabo choke on Oscar that the ref stops because he thinks Oscar is out. He probably was, but he's protesting it.
Kron and Tonon standing, Tonon didn't want to dive into Kron's guillotine, so they stood back up. Kron pulls guard on the standing Tonon and goes into backpack mode. Shifts to standing with a head and collar tie, gets to Gary's back standing and dumps both to the ground. Kron trying to take the back or mount on Gary.
Romulo and Leite is a standing gripfest. Not exactly boring, but not high paced. Kron in mount and slowly squeezing a gift wrap out of Tonon. Kron gets shifted back to guard after some very tough pressure.
JT dumps Lepri to the ground and looks to pass. Romulo has Leite on the ground in the headlock position.
Kron pushes himself away and looks to set up a guillotine. Romulo trying to headlock and work his way around Leite without getting into the half guard. Lepri firmly in the halfguard vs. JT. Tonon has worked himself into body triangle back control on Kron, who is looking to roll back up to guard top.
Same positions for the others. Kron can't re-roll to top of guard so goes to a side and defends the arms. Romulo looking to get his legs involved on the sprawl/headlock. Leite just can't get up off his elbows and knees. Kron now off to the side, has his shoulders free and so Tonon rolls on top of him to mount. Lepri and JT are stuck in that halfguard without much significant action.
Leite finally recovers halfguard as they nearly head out of bounds.
Kron gets up out of mount during a reset and nearly gives up a heel hook, spins around and starts to pass, straight up the middle, knee slice. Beautiful. Gary stays strong with his guard work and gets to half, but Kron keeps his legs out of reach and works for the turtle and back take. Gary trying to slide off to the side.
Romulo back to headlock position out of the headlock. Lepri trying for a heelhook on JT, Torres spins out of it and into a complex halfguard by Lepri. Kron has a RNC choke locked in on Tonon and gets the tap. What a battle. Way closer than Kron ever wanted that to be.
Romulo beasts his way to a toss of Leite and near back take. Has seatbelt contro, but only one hook. Leite turns into him, gets Romulo to turn over, Leite in the top of guard, scramble, back to the feet.
Lepri having trouble with JT's pressure from half guard and can't get a sweep going. JT flattened him out and got past the half guard! Into side control, north/south and Lepri trying to turn into him and back to guard. JT can't control Lepri fully and ends up sprawled on top of Lepri's turtle.
Romulo and Leite standing once more. Letie tries once more for a takedown, only to be sprawled on. AJ vs Leo Vieira now. Romulo holding onto the headlock on Leite and AJ gripfighting with Leo.
Lepri and JT standing after a reset and slowly engaging. Leite spins to halfguard and is trying to twist Romulo's knee such that he has to give up a single or run away. Romulo wins on points.
Leozinho counters a single leg with an guillotine and it appears both sides decided to abandon ship at the same time. Back to a standing grip fight. Lepri and JT still gripfighting. Leo steps out of the way of a single again and briefly chases a guillotine in return. No doing.
Lepri and JT are basically stalemated standing. Neither is stalling per se, but there's not much purpose to their handwork and footwork beyond defense. Torres tries for a couple singles, but doesn't get them.
Benson vs. Otavio right now. All three matches are slow, cautious gripfights. Nothing significant is happening until AJ gets sloppy going after a single and lets Leo behind him for a trip. Otavio also pulls guard on Benson and JT finally bodylocks with Lepri and brings him down. Lepri frantically working to break JT's posture and grab an arm or a leg.
AJ nearly lets Leo behind again - leo displaying some very nice limp leg to escape the single and whip behind AJ, who isn't standing up fast enough to defend super well. Benson working from top as Otavio has his posture destroyed. Otavio armlocks Benson. Not a surprise, but it's a tad bittersweet to see such a fast end to Benson's ride here.
AJ whips Leo down briefly with yet another single leg.
Rafa vs Suzuki. Suzuki does some weird kick out and Rafa armdrags him into a trip takedown. Rafa is on top of Suzuki's legs and making sure Suzuki does't get a kimura. Rafa inches up into mount, very tight work. Smothering Suzuki.
Leo vs AJ is back to the gripfest with nothing really offensive from Leo. Rafa to triangle from top and Suzuki trying to roll out. Does roll out and Rafa goes back to side control with one arm trapped by a leg. Rafa shifts to the other side and gets a back take. Body triangle. Grip fighting for the RNC.
Miyao looking to invert, but not as fast or furiously as with his first match. Rafa slowly getting the RNC gripwork right. AJ and Leo still going somehow. AJ shoots in, lets Leo behind him, stays with him. gets the other leg. Leo gets sloppy and AJ gets a rear bodylock.
Rafa now starting to trap Suzuki's hands with his legs and go for the armlock from the back. Gets it. Very dominant victory for Rafa. Miyao having a hard time getting under Rico and goes for a leglock. Nearly has it and makes Rico defend.
Leo vs AJ to overtime. Aj shoots in, Leo nearly subs him with a Marcelotine. AJ backs out to the feet.
Miyao and Rico in a scramblefest, but Rico is staying smart about his footwork, which is preventing Miyao from getting under him. Leo and AJ are going back and forth, the pace is picking up. Miyao is working half butterfly.
Cobrinha vs Marcio Andre. Leo has a headlock on Rader and is trying to turn it into a sub. Miyao trying yet again to invert and get under. No luck. Leo turns a guillotine into a standing guillotine choke and they head out of bounds. No sub, reset in the middle standing.
Cobrinha pulls guard. Miyao goes for a toehold and Rico too. Both let go. Leo starting to sprawl straight on AJ's shots instead of turning away.
Cobrinha elevates Andre and comes under for a toehold/sweep. Leo might have a takedown out of bounds. Miyao subbed Rico with a leglock. No takedown for Leo. Cobrinha swept Andre and is on top of butterfly/half now. Leo trying to catch AJ being sloppy with a shot. Cobrinha nearly gets a back take, but Andre reverses it and comes up into top of guard.
Reiner vs. Rader now. Cobrinha hasn't managed to sink Andre into one of his traps fully yet. Rader scrambling around with Reiner and ends up on top after briefly being on bottom. Cobrinha gripfighting with Andre from guard now.
Correction: Dopp beat Vinny on points, apparently. I was wrong earlier.
Rader goes for a mean guillotine on Renier from mount, turnover, gets out. Rader is raring to go again in the reset.
Cobrinha has worked to a toehold, but it's not right and he lets go. Andre scrambles away and they reset in the middle. Cobrinha works a kneebar threat into a rear bodylock/dragdown. Top of guard now for him. Andre trying to elevate Cobrinha from one legged x-guard, but Charles pushes a leg aside and back steps out of it. Andre inverts and goes after an arm/leg. Charles pushes Andre to side control and as Andre scrambles away, moves to seatbelt control. Cobrinha getting the rolls of Andre to set him up in legdrag and resumption of the seatbelt position.
After some scrambling, Rader stabilizes in the top half guard of Renier. Cobrinha chasing an RNC, gets both hooks in and flattens Andre out.
Rader resists an upa and eventually goes back into halfguard a different way. Cobrinha hunting the RNC still and I believe time elapses. Cobrinha wins. Rader still looking to get something going vs Renier, they're now on the feet and Renier is acquitting himself well in fending off the guillotine/pass assault of Rader.
Rader works headcontrol into a nifty guillotine attempt, but Renier works his way out and back to the feet. Renier tries for a heelhook at the last, but it is not enough. Rader wins on points.
ANDRE GALVAO VS. BRAULIO ESTIMA!
Braulio right foot forwards, Andre left foot forwards. Both slapping at heads, wrestling style and locking up in similar fashion. Andre feinting at the legs and clinching the head, coming forwards a bit more. Andre pulls a leg towards him and Braulio cooperates. Braulio now playing butterfly and Andre looking to leg weave his way past after switching sides briefly. No go.
Braulio now playing a very open half guard, almost inviting Andre in for some invert work. Andre shifting to leg drag at times, but not feeling it. Andre staying active and switching sides constantly. Braulio seems to be moving much slower, inverts to go for a leg, Andre stands up, stuffs the legs and starts to back out. Has to spin out of the leglock as Braulio won't go away.
After some more feinting and slow movement, Andre settles into the half guard of Braulio to Braulio's right and starts figuring out if he can work the pressures right to pass. An explosive movement sees Andre bypass the halfguard after backing out slightly and try to seize north/south. Braulio inverts in response and Andre crunches down. They've tangled up their legs and Andre drops for a heel hook. It could be there, but Braulio isn't concerned. He's staying patient for the half guard.
Andre tries once more to explosively hop past, but this time to the other side and Braulio gets his legs in to keep the open guard. Braulio really seems to want triceps control on Andre when he's up in butterfly. Andre tries to get an anklelock, but the positioning isn't quite right.
Braulio now on his side, taking a very curious tack towards Andre and Andre appears to be worried of a back take, scrambling backwards as Braulio sidewinds his way forwards. Braulio doing some stuff very reminiscent of the Miyaos, in combination with a heel hook set-up.
Braulio now on top. Andre goes to open guard and tries to take a leg of Braulio. Braulio flips around and nearly backsteps into side control, loses it, Andre stands up with a leg and gets a sweep i suppose and Braulio calmly goes down. Then inverts and starts toe holding Andre with a rear body triangle around the waist. Andre's leg is bent up and the foot is nearly next to the butt, but he's not moving to defend much. Braulio going after a particular foot and Andre flops out, gets to his back and slides the legs out of danger. Braulio inverts again to try for another leg lock, but they're separated. Reset in the middle.
Oh gods, they start doing shit I can't even explain. Twisting and turning, going for advantageous positions that I can't even see happening until they're already past. This is see-sawing like crazy. Braulio getting more clear-cut opportunities for submission set-ups, but Andre seems to have more position advances possible at the same time.
Andre bulldogging his way into a possible side control/brabo set-up. Turns it into a near back take. One hook in, Braulio stands, rolls down, Andre still on him, seatbelt control, Braulio rolling all over, Andre going for the sub and gets the RNC win!
Holy shit. Both guys are tremendous and that was a finish for the ages. That was insane. Just one of the best, most technical and fluid matches from two masters of the sport that I've seen.
It doesn't trump Buchecha/Rodolfo for pure excitement, but in terms of technique, I think it does.