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Grappling Report: Dean Lister becomes first American in ADCC Hall of Fame

A rundown of the biggest headlines and news from the world of competitive grappling.

After seven Brazilian athletes in a row were announced for the inaugural class of the ADCC Hall of Fame, the promotion has finally announced it’s first American inductee. The man who has earned that honor is none other than Dean Lister, one of the pioneers of leglocks in the early 2000s and an ADCC triple crown winner. Lister was only the fourth American to even win an ADCC championship when he won gold in the absolute division in 2003.

He returned in 2005 to beat Jean-Jacques Machado and claim the superfight championship in a tough match, before taking a break from ADCC in 2007. Although he did compete again in 2009, it wasn’t until 2011 that he was able to complete his triple crown and take home a gold medal in the -99kg division. He also holds the record for highest submission-rate at ADCC with a staggering 84% finishing rate in 26 matches across a total of 6 events.

Neiman Gracie set to headline Bellator 274 against Logan Storley

Ever since Royce Gracie dominated at UFC 1, the Gracie family has been a permanent fixture in the world of MMA and this year will be no exception as Neiman Gracie will be headlining a Bellator event for the second time. He will be competing against Logan Storley as both men look to build a winning streak after registering a victory in each of their last fights.

Gracie has struggled a little since losing his title fight against Rory MacDonald at Bellator 222 but rebounded by knocking out Mark Lemminger in stunning fashion in his last fight. Storley won a close decision against Dante Schiro after suffering his first loss against Yaroslav Amosov. Since Amosov is now the undefeated welterweight champion and these two men are in the top-five, this fight might potentially be a title-eliminator.

Kaynan Duarte talks about fighter pay, may not compete for IBJJF again

Fighter pay is a hot topic in the UFC at the moment, but MMA isn’t the only sport that has an issue with how much it’s leading stars make. Kaynan Duarte has just become the first of what will likely be many athletes speaking openly about how much they make by competing on the IBJJF mats. While the IBJJF is definitely the most prestigious BJJ organization to compete under, the monetary rewards are not exactly incredible.

Duarte is the current IBJJF world champion after a fantastic performance in 2021, but he’s not sure he’ll even come back this year. According to a recent interview he gave, Duarte is weighing up his options and is having trouble making sense of the decision to put his body through the grinder at the IBJJF world championships in 2022 when the money he’ll make isn’t even enough to cover his preparation for the event.

Bellator signs wrestling’s most controversial figure, Pat Downey

American wrestlers usually have a similar disposition as your traditional martial artists, in that they often keep themselves to themselves and work in silence to succeed. Pat Downey has pretty much shattered that mold in recent years and become one of the most polarizing figures in the history of the sport, owing in no small part to some of his recent comments about the popularity of women’s wrestling.

After success in wrestling, Downey started to transition to submission grappling and even made an attempt to qualify for the ADCC world championships late last year. Although he wasn’t successful, the diversity of his talents and his extremely marketable persona has drawn the attention of Bellator. The promotion has signed an exclusive contract with Downey and he’ll be making his MMA debut in the middleweight division soon.


Quick Hits


Technique Corner

Longstep pass to Torreando pass

Wristlock set-up from bottom side control

Armdrag to Back-take, or Hook-sweep