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среда, 23 ноября 2011 г.

Roger Gracie Talks About His Return to MMA and ADCC

The greatest BJJ player ever talks about his return. Makes you understand why he is so great!

четверг, 3 ноября 2011 г.

Fedor Grappling with Gegard Mousasi

Watched the video below. Not impressed with Fedor's grappling skills at all here. Just seems that he has no concept of guard at all. I just think with those grappling skills, Monson will take his back and choke him. You just cant allow a guy like Monson pass the guard.

What Fedor just doesnt seem to be able to learn is that he needs to train properly now and he just cant get away with it just on pure natural talent. He looks out of shape but also he needs to train grappling with great grapplers. Gegard Mousasi is a great fighter, but his base is striking. He needs to be winning when rolling with BJJ black belts if he wants to fight in MMA on the highest level. Just giving your back the way he does and have ZERO guard retention ability is not a good way to go.

вторник, 1 ноября 2011 г.

Blue Belt

Wow, whoever got his blue belt in less than 12 months. I haven't really seen any good guys who have managed to reach a decent level in 12 months of training although it really depends on how much time you spend training.

I think 3 times a week for a year is not enough mat time though. It just takes longer to master and drill the fundamentals I think. Of course there are talented guys who have done Judo or Wrestling for years, but I think technique is very important as well.
In the end it is the instructors decision though. I have always been a fan of competitions though and if you can win there, you are on the right track.

For me it was a long road, lots of injuries and hard work, but so worth it in the end.

вторник, 25 октября 2011 г.

Fedor vs Monson Some Thoughts

Fedor vs Monson is an interesting match. Both fighters have skills that they did not manage to perfect over the years which are obvious. Fedor has the stand up to take this fight but Monson is hard to knock out and his BJJ could be dangerous for Fedor.

Nevertheless, I think Fedor should be able to resist the ground game of the Snowman. Werdum and Big Foot were much bigger and really what Fedor has shown recently is really in my mind a decline in the will to fight and also physical abilities. His speed has declined somewhat. If you saw his fights in the past, he was ferocious on the attack, with each hand landing either devastating strikes or upper body takedowns.

More recently he was basically man-handled by Bigfoot and also Brett Rogers. He used to be able to escape many of those positions just on physical ability alone. Now really he has to work for it. He gets real tired more quickly and then cant display the same level of quality of technique on the ground as some of the BJJ black belts.

This fight could go either way but this time Fedor has learnt that the ground game is dangerous for him these days. He will try to knock out Monson standing as he did with his opponents in the recent fights and then be careful on the ground. If Monson does wrestle him to the grounnd though, I do believe that his ability to control and finish fights will be the decider. Looking forward to this one! Great fight for the Moscow MMA crowds and very good for the sport in Russia which is quickly gaining popularity.

суббота, 15 октября 2011 г.

Big Grapplers After ADCC 2011

1. Rousimar Palhares - known as Toquinho is not only a quality UFC fighter but also a nasty grappler when it comes to ADCC rules events. His heel hooks are just plain scary and his aggressive grappling style is something of a warning to his opponents.

Even though he did not win anything, he sure showed he is a real grappling force today

2. Andre Galvao - he showed he is the best at the moment. No doubt his tactics are great as well.

3. Marcelo Garcia - still the best pound for pound grappler in the world, he showed after a tough 2009 ADCC that he still has what it takes to win, and win impressively.

The way he finished Vitor Estima and several other guys was just terrifyingly impressive. His technique is flawless and the x-guard/guillotine master is sure to reign supreme for probably many years to come

4. Rodolfo Viera - with Roger Gracie absent from the 2011 Mundials, Rodolfo has shown he is the new rising star in the sport. He still has a long way to adapt to grappling though, but I look forward to seeing how this guy will develop in the next few years

5. Rafael Mendes - if there is someone that consistently is better than his foes, its Rafael. He has this amazing ability to take the match to the positions where he has the edge and execute the advantage. Cobrinha is a great rival/

Pedro Duarte Nogueira Seminar

The Pedro Duarte Nogueira Seminar in Moscow is now over. The 7-day event was truly a great experience and I think the whole of Moscow's bjj community truly enjoyed the experience.

Pedro is truly a master in jiu jitsu and I loved his techniques especially in the sweeps and the omoplata moves he showed us and hope to you some of them in the sparring soon.

 Thank you to Sport Club Lion and its leaders for organizing the event.

воскресенье, 9 октября 2011 г.

BJJ as a Business?

Just a thought that some people wonder about. Does bjj make sense as a business? Well, I have some experience in the business world and probably an say a few words in this regard.

Firstly what one has to consider is the investment that needs to be made. If you have a shabby one room academy somewhere in the basement with no changing rooms this is one type of project, a budget/economy project that will only attract certain people, willing to pay little and get little in terms of the quality of the facilities.

Of course one might say that the only thing that really matters is the quality of the teaching. In fact, it truly believe that the quality of the teaching is just a single element that makes up the product that is being offered.

The product itself has the following attributes:

1. Teaching - very important. Sometimes the teaching is done by a poor quality instructor which reduces the value. Progression will not be possible without quality tuition. A good academy will offer private lessons.

2. Service - you must be cared for. The teacher must take care of his students, answer their questions and add elements to enhance student learning and experience. Without this, students will not want to dedicate years from their life to learn the sport.

3. Facilities - good quality facilities allowing athletes to train, work out, wash and change are vital. If you have a conditioning room, even if it is not part of the academy, that is a plus.

4. Location. This one is key. The academy must be easy to reach, whether by car, walking or underground. If no one can find it, reach it, then no one will come.

5. Brand. A great instructor, a successful team that wins in competitions, this are just some of the requisites, a good academy has it's own sports gear, patch. Many join the global BJJ teams like Alliance or Gracie Barra. It is important to be in line with the international standard and now the latest in whatever your area of expertise happens to be.

6. Events and marketing. Seminars are one way to attract students from other academies. Once they see your academy, they make a choice whether to join. Marketing activities help attract a student base. It is the job of the academy instructors and owners to then retain students.

You have to find a balance between investing too much in facilities, marketing and staff and making money. If you find the delicate balance, then you will succeed. Building a bond with the students is extremely important too. Think through the numbers your business plan. Be conservative. Don't go all out and burn out. Take careful steps, start small, find another instructor to support you and then expand when you have a good base of students.

четверг, 29 сентября 2011 г.

ADCC 2011

Awesome event, certainly one of the coolest grappling events out there, really enjoyed watching it on Budovideos.com and its a real shame I couldnt make it to the event in person.

So many great fights, some performance dissapointments but also a lot of great guys displaying great skill. Its amazing to me that some guys like Xande Ribeiro that thrashed everone in 2009 now finds it more difficult. Is the level of grappling rising in the divisions? Well, Marcelo Garcia certainly showed that he is still the top dog in the middleweight divisions showing some incredible grappling prowess. I hope to see more of him.

Really a big shame Lucio Lagarto did not get further but the level of competition is extremely high.

A great thank you to Budovideos guys that have made the event available via the internet to so many jiu jitsu and grappling fans. Look forward to going to the next one in person!

четверг, 8 сентября 2011 г.

UFC Lesnar vs Overeem - mega-fight for the fans

Since Fedor vs Lesnar fight never happened thanks to M1 Global and Vadim Finkelstein, I think the greatest thing that could have happened is the upcoming fight between the newly signed Alistair Overeem and Brock Lesnar, two of the biggest and exciting fighters out there at the moment.

I think so many of us would love to see this fight and I have to say, Dana White did great this time making a real great fight happen for the fans. Its just a shame Fedor did not step up and deliver the same for the fans.

These two monsters are both huge and extremely strong and it would be interesting whether Lesnar would be able to deal with Overeem's striking ability, takedown defense and athleticism.

My favourite for the fight is Overeem. He is too technical, a great grappler, very big and has a good endurance. Anything can happen in a fight like this, but I think Alistair will make a fool out of Brock Lesnar this time.

For Brock, the key is the takedown and ground and pound. The classic. Alistair has a great takedown defense so he has to make sure to conserve energy.

четверг, 25 августа 2011 г.

Rasul Mirzaev - Black Tiger - Reality

There is so much nonesense written on the internet around this incident, it made me want to add just my humble opinion regarding the situation.

The situation here in Moscow regarding many peoples from the Caucasus coming over has caused a lot of unhappiness among the general population. Many of the Dagestan and other country representatives behave extremely rudely and a bring many of their habits they were brought up with to Russia when they come to the country in order to make a living and have a new life. It is said to see so many migrants coming over and in groups terrorizing the general population.

However in this case, I can see a very simple story. Rasul Mirzaev, a very talented and successful athlete, sambo and mma fighter happened to be at the night club called Garazh last week. He happened to get into an argument with a guy that was mistreating his girlfriend.

How would you react if a guy 30cm taller than you and 100 pounds heavier along with his friends starts saying things to your girlfriend. Probably not very well. An accident happened. Rasul Mirzaev hit the guy, and he fell hitting his head against concrete. The situation happened thousands of time and Rasul was wrong to do so. He should have left, humbly like many other great fighters would have in his shoes, but he did not. He hit the guy, and he was wrong to do so. He should pay for this, I fully agree. The treatment Agafonov (the guy who got hit) received was not adequate and for some reason, not yet fully determined the guy dies. Is Mirzaev guilty for murder? Well, he is guilty in a way but did he mean to kill the guy? No, he did not. He is however responsible and should pay for assaulting.

I think there is nothing to be proud of what Rasul Mirzaev has done. An extremely good fighter, world sambo champion and undefeated MMA fighter with an unbeaten record of five straight wins. I met the guy on several occasions and he is probably one of the most talented fighters training in Russia currently.

Rasul Mirzaev is a fighter and an athlete. He had really nothing to do at a night club where drinking and drug abuse is the regular theme. He should have contained himself like the humble athletes before him.

What infuriates me however is when there is so much talk regarding MMA and martial arts. People, who know nothing about martial arts and hardly trained in any sport a day in their life say thing like "martial artists should be regulated, banned for life for misbehaviour" and that they are a danger to society in one way or another.
It is those people that hurt the sport, hurt the country. They dont know anything about MMA and give the sport a bad name because they somehow try to link it to crime by trying to associate it with rage. It is those people, who never heard about MMA, UFC or could not even say what the rules are in MMA, they talk in the news, talk to the press, and give our sport a bad name.

It is a great shame that this has to happen. Of course a fighter has to defend himself if he is threatened. Of course it is hard to control yourself when your family is being mistreated. MMA is a sport, and we all have to remember that the guys that study MMA, brazilian jiu jitsu and boxing, are some of the nicest people you will ever meet. Look at Fedor Emelianenko, Randy Couture and many others. These guys could not hurt anyone.

Yes there are exceptions. Jason Mayhem Miller was recently arrested, Rampage and others had some problems with the law, but we have to remember, movie stars have more issues with the law than MMA fighters. We would not put movie stars in cages, would we? for being dangerous? Then lets stop all the nonesense that just goes on and lets stop people who hardly know what MMA really is talking about MMA and their thoughts. If you don't like the violence in MMA, dont watch it. MMA is an adult sport that has developed over the last two decades. Many great athletes formed it and it has now all the regulation needed. Lets not make out MMA fighters as villains or criminals, its not right.

Russia is a country with many warriors, who gain medals in the olimpics, whether it is wrestling or boxing. Many of these people make mistakes just like people in other walks of life make their mistakes. Lets just be honest with ourselves and open minded with others, and lets hope the judges make the right decisions. It is a great shame Bellator lost such a fine fighter though.

воскресенье, 21 августа 2011 г.

Aikido and other stuff that does not work!

One remark that I wanted to make. I have to say that it hurts me to watch some people spend so much time with some martial arts that just don't work at all. One can argue whether some martial art is more effective vs another one. This is fine. Boxing is a great sport and a true martial art. You can learn judo, wrestling and you can even just go and lift weights all day and do lots of cardio fitness. All this will make you stronger and will help you fight.

There are some martial arts representatives however that should just admit, it doesn't work at all. Maybe a little, but mainly a waste of time.
If you want to do movies, do spend your time learning some of this aikido and Kung Fu shit. Just accept it, it does not work in real life. Don't get fooled when you teacher tells you that it only works when you are on the street. On the street you will fall down and end up in side mount and not one kunf Fu teacher will know what to do from there, let's be realistic.

It hurts because I also for some time believed in this stuff. I did aikido, but also bjj and judo. It just shows that using my judo and bjj skills, I am able to fight any aikido black belt. Aikido just does not work. It looks good and it's great for general coordination, but if you want to gain real striking or grappling skill, learn wrestling, boxing, judo, bjj, muay Thai. Don't let them fool you.

Karate can give you a good striking background I admit. I don't doubt these guys. Some are very tough guys.

Think about what you want. Don't get fooled. Talk to people, and understand what you want.

For self defense if you have only a couple of weeks you want to devote, take some courses in self defense but for a lifetime of learning, learn some true martial arts.

Stay away from fake martial arts!

вторник, 3 мая 2011 г.

UFC 129 GSP vs Shields, ADCC 2011

Generally an awesome show. Stayed up late to watch this one and it was definitely worth it.

Definitely expected Machida to win this one in devastating fashion and he did. Did NOT expect him to win via front kick of course but his striking is excellent and Randy Couture is known at least more recently to get knocked down I.e. By Lesnar and Nogueira.

Randy started great by you always expected there to be trouble from Machida and he was always looking for that opening.

Jose Aldo I am particularly impressed by though. This guy is really tough. There are fighters who are great but his time you see a fighter who is amazingly talented, great striking, but also can take a punch. The only thing that I did not see from Aldo is his attacking jiu jitsu. As a jiu jitsu fan myself, it was disappointing to see no real attacking jiu jitsu that is normally displayed by other jiu jitsu world champions like bj Penn, demian Maia and Ronaldo Jacare Souza, not to even mention Roger Gracie. Jose did nothing from is back especially at the end where he could have at least tried for an arm bar or triangle. If Werdum was in that position, you would see a very different scenario play out in round 5 I am sure of that.

I have to say lastly that GSP is as great as ever. I love a calculating fight and this one was definitely one like that. Jake was powerless to do anything really. His takedowns I guess could have been more desperate but when you try to wrestle a guy like GSP I think you just have to be 100 pounds heavier than him because otherwise he is not going down and if he does fall, he is jumping straight back up.

Another great show for the UFC!

By the way if you are looking forward to ADCC 2011, it looks like it is coming to Nottingham UK this September 27-28. This incredible event featuring the best grapplers all across the world will be held near Braulio Estima's academy in Birmingham. It is also possible that Brock Lesnar will participate and a match between him and Roger Gracie will be worth watching with front row seats no doubt.

вторник, 26 апреля 2011 г.

GSP vs Jake Shields

I am looking forward to this fight. GSP is doing all the right things to prepare for this fight. He is getting his jiu jitsu ready and is training with Braulio Estima and Roger Gracie, two bjj superstars. Roger has recently visited my club in Moscow, true champion, I thinknhe is going to do great in MMA.

I think he is a very smart fighter and does not underestimate Jake who has a very well balanced wrestling and jiu jitsu base. If Georges can keep this fight standing, he should be able to do whatever he wants. Taking down GSP is a huge problem. What GSP needs to remember is to avoid a ground fight. If he takes down Jake, then he needs to get up.

Jake's guard is not outstanding though. He has a great top game but I dont think that Jake will be able to submit GSP from the bottom. This is going to be a cool fight just to see who will be able to control the fight. Jake managed to control the much bigger Dan Henderson so it will be interesting to see what his game plan will be for this fight.

If GSP does get beyond Jake Shields, things are going to get interesting. There is really only Nick Diaz that will potentially be an interesting matchup for GSP. The other will be for sure a fantastic matchup against the much bigger Anderson Silva.

Even though Anderson Silva is such an outstanding fighter, I would just love to see how this fight will turn out. If GSP manages to avoid the dangerous striking of Silva, I still believe GSP could take down the middleweight champion and control the fight on the ground. GSP is extremely athletic and it would be interesting to see how he would try to deal with a much bigger and extremely skilled oponent.

пятница, 15 апреля 2011 г.

Strikeforce purchased by UFC

Strikeforce has been bought by the UFC already months ago but still we have not really seen how this acquisition is going tom play out for the fighters. I have been surprised to learn about Fedor still fighting for them after two losses on his record and being out of the Grand Prix.

Fedor vs Henderson I think will be an interesting match up as both have a potential to win this fight in my opinion. Henderson looked real good against the very dangerous Feijao and Fedor has all the skills he needs to take this fight since Henderson has really the same weakness which is the ground game. I don't think Fedor will submit Hendo and this fight will mostly be decided on the feet. It will be interesting whether Fedor will come in better shape and better prepared this time because his lack of technique in bjj which was compensated by outstanding natural ability has now been exposed.

The main Strikeforce events to now look out for though is the Grand Prix and the fights at light heavyweight. Solid fights like Werdum vs Overeem are going to happen and we all hope soon. I want also to see Mousasi fight again soon against Feijao or one of the top guys. The problem for him is that he has been fighting some weak competition or overrated competition and now he needs to take his career on to a new level if he wants to meet guys like Shogun and Jones in the ring. He also needs to get better at dealing with wrestlers. He is still getting taken down which he needs to avoid if he wants to meet guys like Jones and Evans and stand a decent chance. I think he has the potential but needs to be more aggressive and close the holes in his game.

Scott Coker needs to leverage the new marketing resource that the UFC has and also needs to make the fights happen. Too many delays and match making problems are just hurting the brand really.

суббота, 2 апреля 2011 г.

Roger Gracie in Moscow 23-24 April 2011

Dear All, on the 23-24 april 2011 Lion Sports Club, top BJJ academy in Russia ( Gracie Barra) will hold a seminar by Roger Gracie, one of the most accomplished BJJ players and grapplers in the world today. This is going to be an enormous event!

The cost is 3000 RUR for two days. 15:00 start.

I think there are going to be at least a hundred people at least at this event. BJJ is growing fast in Russia and it is a great privilege to see such an accomplished practitioner, a legend at the club.

I think there maybe some grading as well and I will be sure to make some great photos.

пятница, 18 февраля 2011 г.

Fedor Emelianenko - Advertising Guy For BJJ in Russia

Fedor's last fight yet again highlighted the champion's weaknesses on the ground. While many have claimed Fedor has outstanding ground game, it is clear that his skills to reach certain positions and defend against guard passers is weak.

I have first noticed this when I saw Ricardo Arona fight him. He was always great inside the guard, punching his way and through any opponent, but on his back, his only weapon's clearly were submissions rather than positional play. Yes he can through amazing armbars from his back, but when you are up against a high level bjj black belt, this just doesn't work. Fedor's guard got passed and then he got mounted by Silva, something Nogueira struggled to do but Arona showed early own.

Now every Russian is looking at Brazilian Jiu Jitsu differently. They see that you really need a complete ground game something that Judo and Sambo don't offer even on the highest level.

воскресенье, 30 января 2011 г.

Diaz vs Cyborg

Strikeforce puts on a great show quite often but this time I really enjoyed the fights. The BJJ level of the combatants and the Diaz vs Cyborg show was simply exceptional. Roger Gracie in particular was perfect in what he did this weekend. He took Trevor Prangley down, mounted him while preventing him to try to climb the cage to standing and then submitted him with a rear naked choke. One takedown, one submission attempt to seal the win in the first round. It was all jiu jitsu, the Gracie style.

The other fights were also nice. Jacare did well against a dangerous Lawler but you could see that on the ground Ronaldo could do anything he wanted. Takedowns were good as well.

Diaz I thought fought a smart fight but really I agree with the fans that he does need to fight some tougher opponents. There are plenty to choose from in fact in several nearby weight divisions if not his own. Dream has some good guys too.

Looking forward to Fedor vs Bigfoot Silva now. This is going to be for sure anthers solid event, plenty of other fights would love to see in action too including Mayhem who I think would have been a much more interesting fight for Jacare. King Mo and Gegard Mousasi need to return to the cage. Not sure who they would fight, but there are some choices.

Been rewatching Pride tapes, miss Ricardo Arona, he was real good!

пятница, 21 января 2011 г.

Strikeforce World Heavyweight Grand Prix

The new Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix that is about to begin on February 12 2011 with the Fedor vs Antonio Big Foot Silva event is one of the most exciting MMA events that is to take place this year. I think all of the fans are looking forward to this one.

Apart from perhaps Cain Velasquez vs Junior Dos Santos, for me the most exciting fights would be Fedor vs Overeem or anyone in the Grand Prix for that matter. Overeem is also a very exciting fighter and is going to attract a lot of attention going in to this fight with his exciting fighting style and dominant striking ability.

Well Done Scott Coker!

воскресенье, 16 января 2011 г.

Vote BJJ Fighter of the Year 2010!

The guys on the right hand side of this blog have accomplished a tremendous deal last year as we all know. Please vote who you think was the fighter of the year last year, another great year for brazilian jiu jitsu.

Fedor vs Silva

Fedor Emelianenko is certainly an intriguing fighter to follow. Once
considered the greatest pound for pound fighter in the world,
following to the shocking loss to Fabricio Werdum, he is now looking
to return to the octagon and fight some of the best fighters out hhere
at heavyweight.

Antonio Silva in my opinion presents an interesting challenge for
Fedor. On the one hand Fedor has the chance to prove the world that he
still has what it takes to compete with the new generation of
fighters. On the other hand this fight is important for Fedor as a
second loss would really put him off his career track and out of the
Grand Prix.

Fedor in my opinion has all the skill necessary to win this fight. He
is just far more talented than Antonio Silva but technically on the
ground I still think Silva is technically more proficient. It would be
interesting to see Fedor on his back in this fight.

It looks to me that Fedor has learnt almost nothing if anything from
the loss to Werdum. While I see Anderson Silva training with Ronaldo
Jacare and GSP learning from Roger Gracie and Braulio Estima, Mr.
Emelianenko and his coaches clearly think they know it all when it
comes to he ground game. We shall have to see.

I saw a video of Barnett kind of defending Fedor a little, but really
what I think is that I have never seen Sambo fighters pass the guard
well for years. While he can punch from the guard for sure, passing is
clearly not his strongest area, and while he did escape all of those
submission attempts of Nogueira, Rodrigo was never at the level of say
Werdum or Arona on the ground. Arona by the way also had Fedor in some
serious trouble. Had Arona been allowed to punch Fedor from the mount,
I am not certain Fedor would have been able to win there.

This is going to be an exciting fight. I would love to see Fedor in
the second round of course, so let's hope he can indeed get passed
Silva. His conditioning needs to improve, he needs to find sparring
partners, and a new manager if you ask me. Good luck to him.