In the storied career of the iconic Royce Gracie, there have been many memorable moments and fights that have defined his career. Be it the Gracie Challenges that began the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu rise, his UFC 1 match against Ken Shamrock, or maybe his phenomenal litmus test against Sakuraba that lasted roughly 90 minutes, Royce has provided some fantastic moments for the fans of Mixed Martial Arts.
What made this fight so unique was Ologun himself. Born in Nigeria, Ologun was on a Japanese gameshow, and through his charismatic antics, became a big star in Japan! He had his own show, where he would try out new activities and sports.
He would eventually give Judo a shot, and the running joke was that he’d be ready to fight in an actual MMA fight by year’s end. Ologun continued to train, and 8 months after he began his experiement, he was slated to fight against the pioneer himself, Royce Gracie!
The dynamic was fantastic: the icon vs. the TV star! Seeing the fight was held in Japan, Ologun had a strong fan base in attendance. Despite the vast experience gap, the fight didn’t play out as you would assume.
Dealing With The Element Of Surprise In Stride
Be it by luck or by skill, Ologun was actually able to control the pace of the match early on the first round. Was Royce taking him lightly? Was he toying with him? Whatever the case may be, Ologun had the dominant position on one of the most notorious men in Mixed Martial Arts history!
With the fans on their feet in shock, Royce showed the signs of a true veteran by not overacting. The much more athletic Ologun clearly had a more impressive frame that could probably pack a nice punch, but Royce wasn’t about to find out.
Keeping his wits about him, Royce did the smart thing and kept the arms—at least one most of the time—pinned to his own chest. By establishing a high closed guard, Gracie was preventing Ologun from posturing and reigning down shots. By eliminating the hands or his opponent, Royce not only saved himself from unwanted damage, but also limited the ground game of Ologun.
However, Ologun continued to dictate the match and where it went. Maintaining top position, Bobby had the legend in the corner, and was ready to unload. Again, being the crafty vet, Royce was aware enough to angle off to the side, while maintaining a grip on the arm of Ologun. This bought him time to fend off any serious strikes, and allowed him to get his right hand on the calf of Ologun.
From here, Royce was able to adjust Ologun’s footing, bringing him back to the mat. This eliminated the posturing advantage Ologun had, and brought the fight back to where Royce was most comfortable.
Trusting In The Foundational Skills of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
The bell would eventually ring without any major damage being done, but clearly something special was happening, and it’s hard to argue that Ologun didn’t win the first round.
At the start of the second, Ologun was able to stuff a takedown and even plow Royce over, regaining dominant top position. This would not last long, as Gracie was soon able to hit a series of sweeps, bringing him back on top in full mount position.
Aware of the power and athletic ability that Ologun brought to the table, Gracie was smart and was quick to get high up on Bobby when he mounted him. By establishing the mount closer to Ologun’s chest, Gracie didn’t have to worry about Ologun getting his hips under him and exploding and bucking him off.
The full mount is known in the MMA world as the most dominant position, one that would bring some vicious punches and elbows to the poor soul trapped underneath. However, it was clear that Royce had an agenda, as he didn’t throw a single punch from this position.
Rather, he methodically worked his way towards the armbar. Once he had it applied, his top leg had slipped off Ologun, and was on the mat for the most part. Even with a little kink in the process, Royce was able to work around the technical flaw and earned himself the submission victory in round two.
Royce has proven to be very influenctial on the BJJ scene. For more thouhts on HOW important Royce really has been check out this article!
I’ve been grappling for some time now, and recently obtained my black belt. The pinnacle of my rather young grappling career, earning that black belt was one of the best feelings I have ever experienced. Through all the hours of hard work and dedication, it truly was rewarding.
Yet and still, with all the hours logged on the mat and all of the knowledge obtained, I never forgot my humble beginnings in grappling.
For those that know me, you probably know I have a slight obsession for leg locks and variations of the sorts. From inverted to 50/50, if it’s complex and takes some serious studying, then it’s for me! I learned in an interview with Caio Terra that "fancy" is not always best, and in terms of "basics," the guillotine tops the list.
Joining the ranks of Rorion Gracie (Lethan Weapon) and the Machado brothers (Texas Rangers and Redbelt) is Paragon BJJ founder Ricardo "Franjinha" Miller.
Franjinha is currently on location in Montreal, Canada working with actor Paul Walker (Fast and the Furious movie series) as the fight scene coordinator in his upcoming movie Brick Mansions.
Paul has been a jiu-jitsu student for four years and will now have the opportunity to display his skills on the big screen as an undercover cop who tries to take down a ruthless crime lord.
With Franjinha’s guidance Paul's goal is to help display the beautiful Martial Art of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu around the World. Paul says, “ I hope this is just the beginning. I plan to add BJJ in my future movies and help to put the name of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu out there. Bjj has helped me so much lately and I really fell in love with it, mainly through seeing Franjinha's own passion for it. His passion for Jiu Jitsu is so contagious that if you learn from him you petty much fall in love with it.”
When it comes to live grappling, we know all too well that anything can happen if you aren't careful. While you can defend yourself most of the time, there are specific moments in which you become very vulnerable to attack.
For instance, I can defend my legs and arms with rather ease; however, it’s a different story when discussing your back. Back takes can happen in the blink of an eye and can be match-ending depending on the level of grappler in which you are facing.
Sometimes we may not be able to defend the transition, for instance, a berimbolo. However, there are ways you can go about defending yourself once your opponent has latched on to your back and is looking for the finish. Luckily, Raphael Chaves and Macrus ‘Buchecha’ Almeida have a fantastic video breaking down how to intelligently—and calmly—defend yourself from back mount.
Roli has sent us this video of his setup for the Belly Down Ankle Lock. He is promoting his Legal Leg Locks DVD and will be giving us one IBJJF legal leg lock a week. If you want more go to http://www.legalleglocks.com/ and register your email. Watch here for next weeks legal leglock. Our thanks to Roli Delgado.
Roli has sent us this video of his setup for the One Legged X-Guard Straight Ankle Lock. He is promoting his Legal Leg Locks DVD and will be giving us one IBJJF legal leg lock a week. If you want more go to http://www.legalleglocks.com/ and register your email. Watch here for next weeks legal leglock. Our thanks to Roli Delgado.
3rd degree Royler Gracie black belt, 11 time World medalist, and leader of Relson Gracie Jacksonville (www.graciejacksonville.com) Daniel Moraes demonstrating one of his favorite take downs. Moraes was at Serg BJJ (www.SergiBJJ.com)in Savannah, Georgia for a seminar on Friday, December 4th. Daniel has some of the best take down skills of any BJJ back belt and was mentored by Darrell Gholar who was a former US division 1 collegiate wrestler and wrestling coach to Brazilian Top Team.