This past weekend featured a lot of competitive grappling action on both coasts. On the eastern shore the Show the Art Finishers 3 Submission Only event brought together a number of up-and-coming grapplers, along with more experienced athletes to compete under EBI rules. The event was held at Pure MMA in New Jersey and featured athletes from areas including New York, New Jersey and Washington, DC. At the end of the day, spectators in person and on YouTube enjoyed some exciting matchups in both the 145-pound and 170-pound divisions.
James Gonzalez and Jon Calestine were the big winners of the afternoon. Gonzalez took the welterweight tournament while Calestine earned victory in the featherweight group. Both walked out of the show with $2,000 in prize money.
Gonzalez used a variety of submissions to make his way to the finals. He hit everything from a baseball bat choke, to a calf crank, and an armbar to reach the finals where he would face Gary Gioni. Gonzalez pulled out another victory via armbar in overtime to walk away with the big check and bragging rights.
Calestine, on the other hand, used a vicious heel hook game to force four submissions and take the title. The Team Renzo Gracie standout finished every bout very quickly as none of them reached overtime. In the finals he defeated John Battle, who also had an impressive showing, including a 10-second knee bar for the fastest submission of the competition.
The event also featured a number of teenage grapplers competing in super fights. Names such as Grace Gundrum and Cora Sek competed against other up and coming athletes. This was the first time that kids and teens were included in the showcase.
Show the Art Finishers 3 and the first two events are available for viewing on Show the Arts YouTube channel.