Roger Gracie gave one of the top combat sports performances of all time at ADCC 2005.OntheMat.com is pleased to announce our choice of Submission Grappler of the Year 2005 goes to Roger Gracie.
It is rare that we give an award based on a performance at a single event, however Roger Gracie’s performance at the ADCC 2005 was not only the best submission grappling performances ever, it may well rank among the top performances in combat sports of all time.
To win the accolades as OTM Submission Grappler of the Year Roger Gracie won both the under 99 Kilos Division and the Absolute title, defeating 8 opponents over two days in perhaps the most stacked fields in submission grappling ever. Not one of those matches were determined on points as Roger submitted seven of his opponents outright, with one unable to answer the call for overtime.
Roger Gracie began the tournament withstanding a big slam from Justin Garcia, but recovered very quickly to slap on a rear naked choke. He then went on to finish turtle guard master Eduardo Telles very quickly via armlock, then submitted Xande Riberio via Rear naked choke. The finals were a war saw Roger victorious when Alexandre Cacareco could not respond to the second overtime and lost by forfeit.
But if he Roger was good in his own weight division, he was brilliant in the Absolute division, first submitted Shinja Aoki by straight ankle lock in the first round. Roger then secured a rear naked choke on Fabrico Werdum, Xande Riberio was looking for revenge in their rematch, and actually caught Roger in triangle choke, but Roger escaped and was able to put on what was obviously becoming a favorite move, the rear naked choke.
This set the stage for a showdown between Roger Gracie and arch rival Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza, and the confrontation proved to be every bit as dramatic as their previous encounters and then some. Roger almost scored a submission quickly with a guillotine choke, but Jacare recovered and responded with a brutal suplex to Roger. If it fazed Roger, he didn’t show it, and after a scramble on the feet Roger was able to take the back and secure the rear naked choke on the still standing Jacare to win the absolute title.
Roger’s style has been described as old school by some (this is definitely a compliment here), and his success proves the importance of basic fundamental technique. In addition to his considerable offensive capability Roger can boast perhaps the best defense of any active grappler on the circuit and he has certainly demonstrated the ability to recover from any position.
Roger splits his time when not competing training at Gracie Barra in Rio, Renzo Gracie’s academy in New York, and has an academy in London with his father Mauricio Gomes. (More information at http://www.gracie-barra.co.uk)
Congratulations to Roger Gracie, the OTM Submission Grappler of the Year for 2005!
In the next few days we will reveal the OntheMat Jiu Jitsu Player of the year (Gi), OntheMat MMA Fighter of the year and have a 2005 year end wrap up and summary with the most mentionable happenings. Stay tuned…