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Jiu Jitsu in the UFC

Anyone else noticed the lack of submissions in the UFC at the moment? I was reading a piece by James Burman about it, in which he dismisses it as an anomaly, and points out that just because there are not submissions there is still a lot of grappling. But if you look at the recent big events, UFC 92, 93, 94, 95 and 96, there have been a grand total of three wins by submission. Anyone think we can draw any conclusions from that?

Uh… all mma’ers know Jiu Jitsu to some degree therefore they no longer get caught as easily?

One thing for certain is that if half of current mma’ers would stop practicing Jiu Jitsu we would see the number of submission wins skyrocket again.

Bottom line: you need Jiu Jitsu just to be on an even playing field. It may no longer put you at the front of the race, but it definitely keeps you from trailing the pack.

It’s hard to pull off submissions when the other guy knows what you’re trying to do. Like Proto already said, the average bjj skills of fighters has gone up, so in turn the submissions will go down.

Heh, one show where it looked like they knew no submissions was in the last TUF on the British side…maybe they had an off night, and it was only one fight each, but their grappling looked suspect for the most part.

[quote]Protoculture wrote:
Uh… all mma’ers know Jiu Jitsu to some degree therefore they no longer get caught as easily?

One thing for certain is that if half of current mma’ers would stop practicing Jiu Jitsu we would see the number of submission wins skyrocket again.

Bottom line: you need Jiu Jitsu just to be on an even playing field. It may no longer put you at the front of the race, but it definitely keeps you from trailing the pack.

[/quote]

x2

I think most guys are looking for what the American audience will see as an “exciting finish”. Mostly that means punches, kicks, knees, elbows, and above all blood. This actually saddens me. Reminds me of when Corey Hill broke his femur and the people I was watching it with said, “Aw dude I wish I could see that every fight!” Fucking terrible. Also I agree with Proto, to a degree.

[quote]Beershoes wrote:
I think most guys are looking for what the American audience will see as an “exciting finish”. Mostly that means punches, kicks, knees, elbows, and above all blood. This actually saddens me. Reminds me of when Corey Hill broke his femur and the people I was watching it with said, “Aw dude I wish I could see that every fight!” Fucking terrible. Also I agree with Proto, to a degree. [/quote]

Agreed. UFC is not only an arena for MMA but it also has its politics - after all, money is involved. The masses prefer bloody massacres to creative submissions. Perhaps most people would rather see broken femurs over brilliant submissions. They have to keep people interested with the “exciting finishes”.

The UFC was created to find the most effective martial art. The answer was proven by Royce Gracie. Why wouldn’t every fighter learn it? With that, you have to know BJJ to survive, but it’s not necessarily the first line of defense (or offense). Especially considering you need to keep your fans interested. If you believe that most UFC fans want broken bones and bloody noses, BJJ won’t keep their attention. But you need to practice it to prevent losing.

Just my thoughts. Interesting post.

Well, yeah they all know Jits. But that isn’t a new phenomenon is it? You must admit its an interesting trend of late.
Here is Burman’s full blog post-

[quote]At one time you knew that a fight was pretty much over once the Jiu Jitsu guy got the fight to the mat. They?d always find a way to the arm bar, triangle or rear-naked choke and all the traditional martial arts fans would nod approvingly at the way that almost mystical techniques had overcome brawn and aggression.

But the sport changed.

One thing that we can all enjoy about MMA is the fact that it?s constantly evolving and the emergence of different strategies over the years has enriched the sport. Ground and pound, sprawl and brawl, hit and run. All simple phrases for strategies that can be incredibly complex.

Recently we?ve seen a real lack of submissions though and initially I was concerned that we were beginning to see the death of Jiu Jitsu in MMA. In the last two UFC events we?ve had 20 fights and only 1 submission (courtesy of Demian Maia ? who else?). Have the days of the ?gentle way? passed us by? We still have a few stand-out submission masters like Dustin Hazelett and the new guard of Brazilian masters ? Palhares and Maia, but what other evidence is there of Jiu Jitsu in The Octagon?

Well, plenty to be honest…we just have to dig a little deeper than before to appreciate it.

Jiu Jitsu?s influence in The Octagon, despite the lack of its most potent techniques (submissions), is still strong if not stronger than ever. Before we herald its death we should note that three of the five UFC champions are Jiu Jitsu Black Belts. Anderson Silva, George St. Pierre and BJ Penn each hold the fabled rank and the respective straps at their weight. Does a Muay Thai machine like Silva need it? When he beat Nate Marquardt and Travis Lutter it certainly didn?t work against him!

The other point of note is that we?re not considering all the wins recorded by ground and pound. How do you pass someone?s guard to get into a dominant position to deliver strikes? How do you get out from underneath someone so you can stand back up and knock them out with a high kick? Spend some time in a Jiu Jitsu class and you?ll learn these techniques and more. We wouldn?t herald the death of Boxing in the Octagon if people stopped getting knocked out with punches for a while. Fighters would still be scoring with them.

The recent run of results only proves that if you submit someone you?re more likely to earn yourself a nice bonus than you are if you knock them out because there?ll be more competition for the KO of the Night bonus.

Jiu Jitsu started this thing and it?ll be here forever. [/quote]

“Recently we?ve seen a real lack of submissions though and initially I was concerned that we were beginning to see the death of Jiu Jitsu in MMA. In the last two UFC events we?ve had 20 fights and only 1 submission (courtesy of Demian Maia ? who else?).”

The “big three” to jiu jitsu are passing the guard, getting the mount and escaping the mount. If you can pass the guard or get to the mount, jiu jitsu has done its job regardless of whether a fighter wins by submission or ground and pound.

Just because the number of submissions is going down doesn’t mean that UFC fighters aren’t using BJJ. Like he said “Jiu Jitsu started this thing and it’ll be here forever”.

Rather than watching how fighters finish the fight, we should pay attention to how they get to that finish. I think that’ll give us a better idea of whether or not BJJ is dying or not. Undoubtedly, BJJ will be a huge part of how fighters get to victory. I agree that it’s not going anywhere.

I also feel this is a side effect of judging. Not good or bad necessarily, just is. Judges put a big emphasis on takedowns and top game. Therefore, good guard games and submissions from there have fell by the wayside. Even if you are playing a good tight guard, not getting hit much, attempting a bunch of subs, you are likely to lose if you are on bottom.

This emphasis is not lost on fighters who tailor their games to satisfy judging criteria. However, this has been countered recently by top level jiu-jitsu guys by shooting and, if stuffed, pulling half-guard or guard and hitting a sweep. We’ve seen Maia do this, Galvao did it at Dream 8, Monson did it at Dream 8, Aoki does it all the time. So I predict that the continued development of no-gi half-guard games especially will lead to more subs in the future.

About time someone mentioned Maia.

Just look at the Miguel Torres 21 submission wins, Fedor 15 submission wins, Kenny Florian 7 submission wins. It all depends on the fighter. It’s no coincidence these guys are all accomplished submission fighters. The guys who have fought lately are not upper tier submission fighters, so of course there are going to be less submissions.

Speaking of submissions, Tim Credeur looked outstanding against Catone the other day.

http://mixedmartialartvideos.com/2009/04/03/tim-credeur-vs-nick-catone-video-ufc-fight-night-18/

Five minutes ain’t much time to submit a guy near your skill level.

If I’m rolling and my only goal is to avoid getting submitted, even higher level guys have trouble submitting me.

You don’t even get five minutes on the ground (unless you started on the ground) in each round.

Pretty basic stuff.

Bader’s win in the UFN was created by his take downs but finished off by his ability to pass the guard.

The results go in cycles, a couple of UFCs time there will be loads of subs and someone will be asking if KOs are a thing of the past.

if u think there is no bjj in ufc, you dont know what bjj is

i thinks its a mix of a few things, everyone at the ufc level trains in sub defence,the established fighters look to give a more pro typical american stand up fight, also the lack of GIs in ufc make submisions in the later rounds harder

Nikiforos you’re amazing! I missed that fight and have been looking for it since!

[quote]Roundhead wrote:
if you look at the recent big events, UFC 92, 93, 94, 95 and 96, there have been a grand total of three wins by submission. Anyone think we can draw any conclusions from that?[/quote]

In the last UFC fight night alone, there were 4 submissions victories. I would say that it also has to do a lot with the way refs are starting to stand up fighters from being on the ground, for example Roy Nelson having side control and working a kimura on Arlovski and being stood up. Its because its more entertaining for people who are not knowledgeable on grappling to watch two people hit each other in the face.

Also in the UFC fight night before that, with Lauzon vs. Stevens, six of the ten fights were finished in submission.