The final Who’s Number One event of 2020 was headlined by an exciting match between Kaynan Duarte and Rodolfo Vieira but in the end, Duarte made short work of the ADCC & IBJJF World Champion. That wasn’t the only exciting matchup on a card that was stacked with elite grapplers however, and 10th Planet was heavily represented with three competitors taking on big challenges.
Jon ‘Thor’ Blank and Grace Gundrum led the charge against Vagner Rocha and Mayssa Bastos respectively, although both would come up just short in close decision losses. Then the co-main event saw Geo Martinez face off with the streaking young competitor Kennedy Maciel and although he made a valiant effort for the first ten minutes, he was eventually forced to tap to a tight Head and Arm Choke.
Full results for the event:
Kaynan Duarte defeats Rodolfo Vieira via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke), 2:28
Kennedy Maciel defeats Geo Martinez via Submission (Head and Arm Choke), 12:42
Mayssa Bastos defeats Grace Gundrum via Unanimous Decision
Roberto Jimenez defeats Dante Leon via Unanimous Decision
Vagner Rocha defeats Jon Blank via Split Decision
Tye Ruotolo defeats Kody Steele via Submission (Heelhook), 13:29
Promotions All Round For the Top of the UFC Middleweight Division
This past week has been a big one for BJJ in the Middleweight division. First on the list was current UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya, who received his BJJ purple belt from ATOS head coach and reigning ADCC superfight champion, Andre Galvao.
Although most people were happy for the superstar, Chael Sonnen appeared to have some criticism of the promotion and of Galvao in general.
Not long after this, the man that Adesanya took the title from and the man who may very well be next in line to take a shot at him, Robert Whittaker, received his black belt. It’s been sixteen years since Whittaker first put on a gi and he now takes Wrestling, BJJ, and no gi classes at Gracie Barra Smeaton Grange. He’s even competed in the gi in recent years at brown belt and this promotion is one of the most well-deserved in recent memory.
Bellator 254 Saw an Elite Judoka Crowned as Queen of the Flyweights
Juliana Velasquez has spent years in a Judo gi training for the hopes of one day competing for an Olympic gold medal, but narrowly missed out during her career. Now she believes that winning the Bellator Flyweight title at Bellator 254 against Ilima-Lei MacFarlane is equivalent to the medal she missed out on. Surprisingly, she actually ended up winning the belt primarily through her work on the feet throughout the five round fight.
She now sits as one of the few Judoka who’ve managed to win a title in a major MMA organisation, and she’s done so while maintaining a perfect record of 11-0. The rest of the event was relatively light on grappling with only two submission finishes throughout, although Robson Gracie Jr finally met Billy Goff in their delayed fight. Unfortunately for him, Goff used his striking advantage perfectly to get the finish in the second round.
California Has Approved the First Ever BJJ Curriculum for Police Use
It seems as though there are reports of regular citizens using their hard-earned grappling skills to restrain criminals until police arrive on a pretty regular basis. We’ve even reported on BJJ practitioners managing to restrain attempted kidnappers not so long ago here. Due to that and the police committing acts of excessive violence or resorting to firearms far too quickly, there have been a growing number of people calling for better police training.
That’s why Rener Gracie has been campaigning as hard as he can lately for his plan for national police reform, using BJJ as a core focus of it. Now, at least one state is finally listening. The Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) have now officially approved his ‘Gracie Survival Tactics’ course for police officer use in California, which is a huge step forward in his mission, but only the first of many.
- Olympic and World Champion boxer Claressa Shields has already announced her MMA debut with PFL, but now she’s started training BJJ under Roberto Alencar to prepare.
- Well-known BJJ black belt Rafael ‘Barata’ Freitas has been jailed and accused of drugging and raping BJJ student, although his legal team have since publicly denied the allegations entirely.
- Olympic Judoka Kayla Harrison has announced one more MMA fight for 2021 at Titan FC 66, only a matter of weeks after a brutal TKO finish at Invicta FC 43.
- At the beginning of a stellar UFC 256 event, 21 year-old BJJ brown belt Chase Hooper made his comeback in the third round with a beautiful heelhook finish.