Thursday, July 27, 2017

BJJ Scout: Weidman vs Gastelum - Teaching an Old Dog New Tricks

Watching the evolution of a fighter or grappler over time is truly a gift of the modern era. Add to that insight from people far more observant and calculating and analytical than your humble narrator and the internet legitimately possesses so much to add to the evolution of grappling and combat sports.

Watching the change in Weidman's tactics and in particular that 10 finger posture controlling grip high on the opponents back to continually drag or chop him down to the back when combined with the riding vs back taking is everything that watching grappling evolve is about.

It's amazing to see a guy as good as Weidman is, with his grappling chops, adjust and change and truly change how guys see and approach the game. Another guy obviously is Maia, watching for example, his fight with Jake Shields that he lost (I honestly think Shields escaping the backpack (an earlier version of it) then ending up on top won Shields one more round out of the three and therefore the decision). At any rate, Weidman's grappling game was just simply fluid. I think Gastelum's success against talented grappler Tim Kennedy also gave him a bit too much confidence in this bout. Gastelum at times appeared to lack urgency in dealing with Weidman's top game. That's of course easy for me to say as I'm at home watching and he could have been doing his best but simply was not prepared for the change in Weidman's top control and decision to eschew back control. It's honestly amazing to go back and see the change in the game of guys from even several fights previously. Here, though, Weidman's body lock to takedown to that ankle pick off the cage, it all just looked and seemed fluid and eventually, with a guy like Weidman on top of you, keeping you there with a top game you likely didn't prepare for...the end came as a result of the top control and opportunity simply arose.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

BJJ Scout - Cormier vs Jones - Clinch Fighting Preview/Analysis

Dude is on fire this week (if it even is someone who identifies as male...). I've posted a ton about this DC/Jon Jones fight but frankly, I haven't been this excited for a rematch or a title fight or a unification bout in......I couldn't even tell you how long. BJJ Scout as always shows a narrative of the fight/stylistic match-up which I had not previously noted.

Personally, I noticed that in a larger context, either DC abandoned (I doubt it) or Jones adjusted (likely) to DC's head control after the first couple rounds. That being said, it's easy to forget that DC was coming down to LHW and had not fought 5 rounds at that weight before. Early on, especially, DC had to strictly diet to reach LHW because of his weight cutting experience/effects after the Olympics. The real question is, how much more mileage does DC have? Jon Jones' inactivity is a concern but moreso because of how focused or unfocused he has been with no looming fights (other than several he was pulled from for various indiscretions. Did the window of time where Jones' physical abilities and talent and optimal age range pass ala Muhammad Ali after his time spent incarcerated? Not to say that either man is now washed up or done, but with Ali there were some notable changes to be sure. I always chalked up the loss in the first fight to DC's fatigue setting in + Jones' ability to adjust. I also forgot until I rewatched the fight just how scrappy a fight it was. I mean, they really put it one one another for 5 rounds. It concerns me that DC has had as many fights go the championship distance as he has since winning the belt (ala it may have caught up with Dominic Cruz - not to mention an insane injury layoff period)......but we'll see. I promise this is probably the last DC/Jones post until the actual fight.

Monday, July 24, 2017

UFC Rewind: Jon Jones vs Daniel Cormier First Fight

UFC 214 Countdown Special Full Episode: Cormier vs Jones 2, Maia vs Woodley, Cyborg vs Evinger

Inside the Octagon Breakdown of UFC 214: Cormier vs Jones 2

Fair play, as I've been a total nonce in talking ill about the UFC's lack of starpower and entertaining match-ups for the past two months or so, this card promises/has high expectations. A long, long, long awaited rematch with the added narrative of "Mr. Towel Hands" Cormier and Jon "I love trouble" Jones.....Cyborg fighting a woman who's remotely close to her size, Lawler vs Cerrone in a contest of aging gladiators who like to cause and absorb brain damage, Jimi "I am totally risking my title shot to face a guy with one impressive win in the UFC" Manuwa, and Demian "backpack" Maia vs Tyron "my last two fights were a draw and a razor thin mind blowingly boring decision" Woodley.

The undercard has Renan Barao in desperate need of a win and Ricardo Lamas fighting to stay in the middle of the pack.