clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

UFC 139 Judo Chop: Martin Kampmann Foot-Sweeps Rick Story With a Sasae Tsurikomi Ashi

New, comments

In another mini-Judo Chop from UFC 139, T.P. Grant takes a look at Martin Kampmann's exploitation of Rick Story's mistakes in the clinch. Kampmann came into the bout still furious about the decision loss to Diego Sanchez at UFC Live: Sanchez vs. Kampmann and took his anger out on Story, who had experienced his own tough loss to Charlie Brenneman at UFC Live: Kongo vs. Barry. The two were going head to head to determine who would springboard right back into the divisional elite among the welterweights and Kampmann used his clinch skills to gain a decisive advantage.

Kampmann used a slightly modified form of Sasae Tsurikomi Ashi, one of the fundamental throws of Kodokan Judo. The Princeton Judo club writes on this technique:

Usually attempted when uke moves forward or in a circle. In competition, it is often combined with O-soto-gari. Sasae-tsurikomi-ashi can be effectively countered with O-uchi-gari or Kuchiki-taoshi.

Within judo, this throw can be used for ippon - a match-winning throw -and it relies upon the interruption of the opponent's foot placement to create a moment of instability that can be rapidly capitalized upon.

Let Tom take you into Kampmann's sweet foot sweep from the clinch after the jump.

First, I give you the traditional judo-style performance of this sasae tsurikomi ashi throw:



Due to the gi and the grips available to the tori (throwing person), the traditional throw looks a bit different than we saw it in UFC 139. Now to Kampmann's MMA-specific version, as laid out by Tom Grant:

In MMA fighters come from many different backgrounds, and while high level fighters no longer come to the sport employing a single martial art, each fighter has his or her own distinct background and style. One of those dominant martial arts backgrounds in MMA is wrestling. As wrestling becomes more a commonplace component of elite MMA and submission grappling, more strategies are being developed to deal with strong offensive wrestlers. The most basic strategy is "Don't wrestle a wrestler," meaning the using of techniques against wrestlers that are not commonly found in wrestling.

Martin Kampmann did a wonderful job of employing these techniques against Rick Story, who destroyed Brazilian jiu jitsu ace Dustin Hazelett using nasty hit-and-run body punishment tactics. Kampmann clearly did not want to let Story work his regular wrestling attack and use such tactics from the top. Kampmann wanted Story on his back instead. In order for Kampmann to get a decent offensive wrestler on his back, without spending all his energy clinging to a single leg while Story sprawls on him, Kampmann had to reach into his Danish Muay Thai background and combine that with his considerable grappling experience.


Gif via

Kampmann throws the quick knee and then steps in with his right foot, towards Story's underhook. Story understands that Kampmann is bringing his hips in close and looking for a takedown and he shifts his weight on to his left foot to drive at Kampmann with his underhook. But as Story pushes in, Kampmann pulls, which brings Story off balance and to maintain his balance, Story needs to take a step with his right foot. However, Kampmann is already blocking that step from landing with his left foot and spins to complete a perfect foot sweep. Story is on his back, where the decisive advantage in the fight can be seized.

Due to his Muay Thai background, Kampmann is an able clinch striker and grappler. In the gif above, Kampmann and Story are locked in over-under grips, in which both fighters have one underhook and overhook. This a common position in wrestling and judo and there are a myriad of throws and takedowns from this position. After throwing a knee to establish distance, Kampmann chooses to go for a spinning trip against the wrestler, instead of fight for double underhooks or engage in a grinding standing battle.

After the modified sasae tsurikomi ashi, Story would spend the rest of the round fending off Kampmann's arm triangle set-ups and would go on to lose the decision to the Dane.

Questions? Comments? Fire away below and thanks to Tom for the great mini-Judo Chop.