MMA Grappling Recap 5 – BJJ Back in the Cage

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LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - FEBRUARY 20: (L-R) Tom Aspinall of England secures a rear choke submission against Andrei Arlovski of Belarus in a heavyweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on February 20, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

After a short hiatus, we return to our series on BJJ in MMA, looking at the best MMA grappling in the cage from the past week. We take a look at the most exciting moments, slick submissions, and beautiful gameplans. This is grappling even a casual can appreciate.

Tommy Aaron (LFA 100)

Tommy had taken the lead in this match from the start, putting on an excellent striking display for the first two rounds and taking the lead. The third round could so easily have been there to eat away from the clock, but it was anything but stagnant. There, we got some terrific wrestling and dynamic scrambles, a slam to the mat, and some oh-so-close attempts to return to the feet. Finally, slicing through the guard, Tommy’s powerful ground and pound forced Scott to give up his back and lead to the finish. 

Casey O’Neil (UFC Vegas 19)

This bout had some real extended grappling exchanges, with a huge amount of movement and some brilliant transitions. Shana showed good defence but that did little to extend the match – she was good enough to keep it interesting but not quite enough to escape. The first round ended with some strong elbows on the ground and a last-minute heel- hook attempt, and the second began with a rapid takedown. It was every aspect of MMA grappling. The best thing O’Neil showed was the ability to maintain a dominant position and transition seamlessly despite her opponent’s furious activity, and it showed as she was able to end up on top and rain down strikes for the finish. 

Tom Aspinall (UFC Vegas 19)

In a match that had just a few moments of grappling, Tom Aspinall won the biggest fight of his career against Andrei Arlovski. The bout looked to be a carefully executed stand-up match, but with a quick change of pace, Tom took his opponent down, took the back, and submitted him in seconds of taking the position. It was a quick turnaround and one of those moments in which the submission is just as thrilling as the KO. 

Darrick Minner (UFC Vegas 19)

This was the only fight in this list to not end in a finish, but don’t let that fool you into dismissing it. This match, aside from being great when it was on the feet, was packed to the seams with submission attempts. Darrick Minner came close to a head and arm choke time and time again, maintaining a dominant position throughout and showing fantastic transitions between the triangle, the arm-bar, and the omoplata. Rosa was far from defenseless, showing good kimura attacks but ultimately did not have the skills to walk away with the win. This ended in a decision but was likely my favorite of these matches, and showed some beautiful MMA grappling. 


Like this article? Check out some of our previous MMA grappling recaps, and let us know if we missed anything out.

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Featured Image Credits to Embed from Getty Images

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