Many insiders are predicting that the 76.99 KG weight class will be the toughest field in the entire tournament. ADCC 66 – 76.99 KG Weight Class
The second of the weight classes we will be looking at, many insiders are predicting that the 76.99 KG weight class will be the toughest field in the entire tournament. It was also the first of the divisions to name all 16 participants, and although there have been switches and substitutions (most notably Jean Jacques Machado has entered the super fight against Dean Lister), the quality of the replacements is testimony to the depth of this weight class.
66 – 76.99 KG#1 Marcelo Garcia 2003 World Champion (Brazil)#2 Juan ‘Jucao’ Carneiro 2005 Brazilian Qualifier (Brazil)#3 Cameron Earle 2005 North American Qualifier (USA)#4 Martin Lindqvist 2005 European Qualifier (Sweden)#5 Shinja Aoki 2005 Japanese Qualifier (Japan)#6 Gavin Kulper 2005 Australian Qualifier (Australia)#7 Chris Brennan (USA)#8 Pablo Popovitch (USA)#9 Marcos Avellan (USA)#10 Diego Sanchez (USA)#11 Renzo Gracie (Brazil)#12 Jason Brudvik (Sweden)#13 Jake Shields (USA)#14 Leo Santos (Brazil)#15 Otto Olson (USA)#16 George St Pierre (Canada)
Name: Marcelo GarciaStyle Black Belt BJJ, Alliance TeamADCC Record 4-1, 2005 76.99 Champion (Runner up 2003 Brazilian Trials)www.fabiogurgel.com.br/
Marcelo was a last second entry into the 2003 ADCC Championships, having taken second in the Brazilian Trials. The big show would see the emergence of a true superstar in our sport, and Marcelo hasn`t looked back since winning numerous titles and accolades in both submission grappling and jiu jitsu since his impressive run. Marcelo has many, many weapons in which to defeat his opponents. The first is a nearly unstoppably arm drag which allows him to take his opponents back, where few if any have escaped. The second is his X-Guard, which give his opponents fits trying to solve. Without a doubt Marcelo is one of the most exciting grapplers to watch in the world today.
Name: Juan ‘Jucao’ CarneiroStyle: Black Belt BJJ (Brazilian Top Team)ADCC Record First Appearance (2005 Brazilian Qualifier)www.braziliantopteam.com
Jucao is a tough and tactical fighter who in addition to being a black belt in Jiu Jitsu has excellent takedowns and the ability to smother his opponent from the top. Jucao runs an academy in Paris, France. Jucao also has a record of 5-3 in MMA, his most recent outing a loss to Ryo Chonan.
Name: Cameron EarleStyle: Black Belt BJJ (Ralph Gracie)ADCC Record First Appearance (2005 North American Qualifier)www.RalphGracie.com
Cameron Earle earned his shot at ADCC by submitting all three of his opponents in the North American trials, and he used three different submissions to do this, a shoulder lock, foot lock, and a guillotine choke. With so many weapons at his disposal, victories under a few minutes are not uncommon for Cameron, and with his technique and raw physical abilities he has the tendency to literally crush his opponents.
Name: Martin LindqvistStyle: Purple Belt in BJADCC Record: First Appearance (2005 European Qualifier)www.hiltibjj.com
Martin earned the most technical fighter award at the European trials after having submitted all of his opponents via armbars and triangle chokes to earn his shot at ADCC. Lindqvist is known for being both technical and very quick and will be very dangerous from his back to any opponent caught unawares.
Name: Shinja AokiStyle: Judo / Shooto middle weight world rank 8ADCC Record: First Appearance (2005 Japanese Qualifier)
Shinja battled his way through a field of 16 men to get to ADCC, Shinya Aoki has strong judo based grappler. As Aoki calls himself “10 degree of flying submission”, he does exellent flying arm bar in the competitions. Aoki trains at Pareastra under Yuki Nakai and recently received his BJJ black belt from him. Aoki is known for his unorthodix submissions and has a reputation for hurting people because he applies them faster than they can tap.
(thanks to No Bi and Cornholio for the information)
Name: Gavin KulperStyle: ExtremeADCC Record: 1-1 (2005 Australian Qualifier)
Another returning ADCC veteran, Kupler fought some wars to win the Australian Qualifier, with three of his matches going the distance and the finals going into double overtime. Kupler is extremely strong with his wrestling, with excellent takedowns and being hard to takedown in return.
Name: Chris BrennanStyle Next Generation Jiu JitsuADCC Record: First Appearancewww.chrisbrennan.com
Chris Brennan is a noted MMA veteran who has fought all over the world and in the biggest shows including KOTC, UFC and Pride, but for him his appearance in ADCC is as much a quest for the respect he deserves. Chris has a record of 16-9-1 in MMA with 13 of those wins coming via submission. He also has a very successful academy and fight team. Admittedly, Chris` favorite move is the kimura “or any other armlock combination”.
Name: Pablo PopovitchStyle: Black Belt, Brazilian Jiu JitsuADCC Record 1-1 (2003 North American Qualifier)www.bjjcenter.com
In 2001 Pablo defeated previous years champion Marcio Feitosa in the first round before losing to Shaolin. Pablo return to the big show as one of the most competitive grapplers in North America having won numerous titles since then. Pablo is technical and explosive, he stifles his opponents and then when given the opportunity will explode into a submission. Pablo also has one the most super hero inspired physiques in the entire sport.
Name: Marcos AvellanStyle: Freestyle Fighting AcademyADCC Record First Appearance (2005 North American Qualifier 87K)www.floridamartialarts.com
Marcos actually won the North American qualifier at one weigh class higher, but when brother David received an invitation Marcos decided to move down a weight class. Over the last two years Marcos has competed at 155 and 191 and everywhere in between, so he he should feel at home in this weight class. Stylistically, Avellan is a very game, smart competitor who is going to make work for everything in the match. Marcos is more well rounded than he often gets credit for, but is especially dangerous while on top and attempting his unorthodox guard passes.
Name: Diego SanchezStyle: Jackson Gaido Jiu JitsuADCC Record First Appearancewww.4diego.com
Diego Sanchez, after winning The Ultimate Fighter reality series on Spike TV just may be the most well known mixed martial artist in the world right now as millions of people saw him win four bout (three of them in very one sided fashion. Diego is easily one of the most confident, aggressive fighters on the planet, while opponents may typical focus and compose when the step unto the mat, Diego wanted it last month. Stylisitically, Diego can be described as pure aggression on the mat, and often forgoes positioning to go after submission, after submission, after submissionâ€¦. Coupled with his heart and natural athleticism Diego is an extremely dangerous opponent.
Name: Renzo GracieStyle Black Belt, Brazilian Jiu JitsuADCC Record 10-3 1998, 2000 76KG Championwww.RenzoGracie.com
Renzo Gracie may well be the most beloved jiu jitsu practicioners of all for his talent and winning personality. This year will mark his SIXTH participation in the ADCC world championships, and his mere presence adds so much credibility to this field. Renzo has competed in both this weight division (and too much lesser success) the weight class above. Renzo Gracie is also the oldest competitor in this division by at least seven years to the nearest competitor. Does this mean that experience equals an advantage, or does it mean the newer generation is coming up this year?
Name: Jason BrudvikStyle: Brown Belt Brazilian Jiu JitsuADCC Record First Appearancewww.millenniajiujitsu.com
Jason Brudvick may be the most cerebral fighter ever, and he splits his training between Millennia in California and Hilti BJJ in Sweden where he is nearly completed a Phd program in Chemistry. Jason is a very exciting grappler to watch, and with his long frame works his guard to his best advantage, looking for sweeps and submissions.
Name: Jake ShieldsStyle: Purple Belt Brazilian Jiu Jitsu / WrestlingADCC Record First Appearancewww.JakeShields.com
Jake Shields began as a wrestler with a scholarship and turned to MMA fighting for fun, soon hooking up with Cesar Gracie`s team and seeing a dramatic improvement in his skills. Coming unto prominence by upsetting Hayato Sakurai in MMA. Jake has steadily shown his prowess in both MMA and Sub Grappling taking on many tough challenges. On his first gi competition ever, Jake won the purple belt middleweight division at the Pan Americans in 2005. Although a wrestler at heart, Jake has shown impressive submissions as well, and will actively search for guillotines and leg locks especially.
Name: Leo SantosStyle Black Belt Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Nova UniaoADCC Record 3-1 2001 76K Third Place
Leo Santos is well decorated Brazilian Jiu Jitsu stylist, and took third at the 2001 ADCC. Leo uses his long frame to his advantage and will be looking to score sweeps and submissions, but might be stifled by a strong or determined opponent.
Name: Otto OlsonStyle AMC PankrationADCC Record 3-1 2003 76 K Second Placewww.pankration.com
Now training with Matt Hume at AMC Pankration in Seattle, Otto Olson was a wrestling standout at the University of Michigan where he ranked as high as second in the NCAA standing. Otto is absolutely enormous for this weight class and the most physical grappler here, his pawing for the head and shoulder tackling lock ups border on strikes. Anyone unfortunate enough to be facing Otto will assuredly be in for a grueling, physical contest.
Name: George “Rush” St PierreStyle: Purple Belt Brazilian Jiu JitsuADCC Record First Appearance
The last entry into ADCC is George St Pierre. Although probably more well known for his MMA outings (where he is 9-1 most recently suffocating Jason Miller in a decision victory) he is a very good grappler, and recently won the Grappling Grand Prix held in Canada. “Rush” is very strong for this weight class and might simply overwhelm his opponent with his physical prowess, and his new favorite move is the kimura.
Some Historical Match Ups-
Marcelo Garcia vs Renzo Gracie- If there was any single match that made Marcelo Garcia`s name at ADCC 2003 it was this one. Garcia basically took Renzo`s back and stayed there in what at the time was considered a shocking upset.
Marcelo Garcia vs Otto Olson- Marcelo Garcia defeated Otto Olson via choke in the finals of ADCC 2003 to win the crown.
Marcelo Garcia vs Pablo Popovitch- At SWO 1 in early 2004 Garcia showed took Popovitch down, passed guard and eventually submitted Pablo via rear naked choke.
Marcelo Garcia vs Cameron Earle- At Mundial 2001 Cameron actually submitted Garcia in the brown belt division. This was well before Garcia took the world by storm, of course,, but some research on Marcelo shows he had consistently placed at the Worlds for his belt level for each year.
Marcos Avellan vs Pablo Popovitch- Popovitch has defeated Avellan three times in the past (last time by Rear Naked Choke at Grappler`s Quest West 5). If they match up again Avellan (who wants this rematch badly) has gained some size since these match ups.
Marcos Avellan vs Otto Olson- Otto Olson defeated Marcos via guard pass at SWO 1 using a tactic that a battered Avellan would later jokingly refer to as “clubbing baby seals”.
Martin Lindqvist vs Jason Brudvick- Martin Lindqvist submits Jason Brudvick fairly quickly with an armbar at the 2005 European trials.
Jake Shields vs Leo Santos- First round match up at Grappler`s Quest West 5. Jake wins by advantage but spent the majority of the match hunting for the submission as Leo looked to sweep.
Jake Shields vs Pablo Popovitch- Second Round Match up at Grappler`s Quest West 5. Pablo wins a very close match that sees a number of reversals between the two.
Diego Sanchez vs Pablo Popovitch- Diego and Pablo are one and one. Diego won the first match up in the finals of Grappler`s Quest US Nationals 04 on points by aggressive going after Popovitch the entire time. A few weeks late Popovitch evened the score by neutralizing Diego`s aggressiveness to a large degree.
Juan ‘Jucao’ Carneiro vs Leo Santos- Leo Santos won a close match at Campos in which Jucao feels he was not awarded points he should have been.
The Safe Bet- Marcelo Garcia
It`s really difficult to go against Marcelo Garcia here. In addition to being the 2003 Champion, he`s been extremely active adding the titles of Mundial Black Belt Champion at middleweight, along a string of victories at every submission grappling competition he has entered including the Arnold Gracie, SJ Barra and SWO. More than any other athlete in this competition, the expectations are huge for Marcelo.
The Money Bet- Cameron Earle
Cameron is the probably the highest percentage finisher in the United States right now, and within his own weight class he has looked virtually unbeatable. Awarded the most technical fighter of the North American Trials, his offense is going to be hard for anyone to deal with. As stated above, Cameron actually has a submission victory over the current champion Garcia, so psychologically he has a step up on the field.
The Long Shot- Otto Olson
Otto probably is easily the top wrestler in the field, but to say he`s just adapted well to submission grappling is a bit of an understatement, he`s made it his own. He`s got a very physical style (he`s HUGE for this weight class) his opponents will be forced to adapt to and deal with. Last year he made it to the finals only losing to Marcelo Garcia. This year he could take the whole thing.
Coming soon 87K and udner program!