|Professional....yes, why yes indeed.|
Cash money for competitors. Cash money (supposedly) for best submission, though no clarification for the determination of that ranking.
And a "fight card" rather than watching brackets play out over the course of however many hours.
And just in general, I'm glad someone stepped up and made the "attempt" at a professional event.
The quality of matches minus Galvao/Ryron was exciting:
Half the matches ended by submission.
2 of the 3 that went to a draw came so close to ending by submission they were still exciting.
Hearts were broken. Reputations made and/or challenged.
However, when launching a professional event, despite the understanding there will be glitches, there were some serious errors in packing the product:
4 hours of watching for 6 MATCHES
1) Starting an hour late
2) dead time between matches. My wife commented, "I would have rather seen commercials than just a logo for Metamoris" (a made up word)
3) at one point the commentator said, "no heel hooks, right?"
4) a clarification that reaping the knee was legal (for the initiated/knowledgable grapplers among us)
5) as a "Superbowl" of Jiu-Jitsu, the program and the packaging were atrocious. My wife has been to plenty of grappling tournaments (both Judo, BJJ, Submission Only and MMA events) and she said that as a spectator it was unbearably long
6) a white tournament mat with several matches where both competitors wore white gi's
7) no clarificiation of the rules during commentary/play-by-play about legality of submissions (though they did clarify that slamming from the guard was not permissable)
8) no program or idea of how long the event was, when there would be an intermission (that there would be one to begin with)
9) overpriced tickets. it was clear that not a lot of people bought those $350 matside seats
As a commercial for the Gracie Diet, Self-defense Jiu-Jitsu, Gracie University (notice a trend there?) the marketing was barely a subtext. - though, in retrospect, with Rorion heading it up, that should have been expected by those of us familiar with history
I could have also passed on the hammering into the brain part about how "even if you're not in a dominant position, by not getting tapped out, or by escaping you are somehow winning."
I regard it as a disservice to tell grapplers out there that to show up to a SUBMISSION ONLY tournament and stall your way to a 20 minute draw is somehow winning.
I'm not here to watch "moral victory Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu".
Surviving is not the same as winning.