Salutations, dear readers! Kevin Bradley here with the latest and greatest news in the world of professional combat sports. That’s right. The Aces BJJ News Roundup is here!!!!
Memorial Day recently recharged us all with fun times and good food, so we’d like to take a short moment to remember all servicemen and women who laid everything down in the line of duty. And to all current or past military who might be reading this, thank you. And to any that missed it, please go and check out our Memorial Day Tribute article written by the incomparable William Hancock right here.
Though we were a bit light on events this week, WNO came in clutch with several marquee matches that rocked the grappling world. From a sub of the night performance by Mikey Musumeci to a blazing quick main event from Craig Jones, the show set a solid pace from beginning to end.
Unfortunately, the dark side was strong this week, as we have to talk once again about the Paul Brothers. Ahead of older brother Logan’s match against possible GOAT boxer Floyd Mayweather, Jake Paul will once again be facing a retired UFC fighter in a professional boxing match of his own. Former Bantamweight champion Tyron Woodley will be tasked with representing MMA against the blonde guy who kicked Ben Askren to the curb, and honestly, a few folks are nervous.
And finally, a bullied teen is receiving help after a vicious bullying attack caught on video. Renner Gracie once again offered to sponsor a kid in need, and it looks like the help is already taking hold. Always fantastic to highlight goodness!
All this and more on this week’s roundup!
In a bare week for grappling news, WNO came in clutch to give us all the eye candy we could want. With a stacked prelim card and main card, people got to see BJJ greats from all over the world play their games on the mat. But with respect to them, Mikey Musumeci vs. Lucas Pinheiro and Craig Jones vs. Luiz Panza stole the show. Both dynamic submission finishes, the technique, and pace were such that you could blink and miss half the show.
In the co-main, Musumeci immediately sat to guard and looked for leg exposure. Luis began immediately looking for the pass and tried to control Mikey’s legs. Mikey was still able to enter K-Guard and began to force Luis to posture as he attacked the now exposed right leg. Luis did a phenomenal job defending, rolling out, and nearly escaping the leg entanglement. But Mikey stuck on, and at barely two minutes into the match, Luis gave up the tap. A lightning-fast performance, but it would soon be outdone on the clock.
In the main event, Jones immediately sat to guard looking for his classic entry, and Panza dropped to join him. Jones looked for an arm drag on Panza’s right, but Panza disengaged as Jones slipped in a butterfly hook. Jones went deep and caught a bite on Panza’s right leg, causing the Checkmat black belt to turn to escape. However, Jones had the leg fully secured and brought Panza to the mat as he went for the heel hook. With less than 60 seconds having passed, Jones got the tap, and the main event win.
It was a fantastic night of matches. If you missed it, they deserve a look back online.
Woodley vs. Paul
And now we must talk about this. Former UFC champion Tyron Woodley will be facing disgraced Disney Channel star turned Social media monster turned pro boxer Jake Paul, in a Showtime pay-per-view event this August. Paul is looking to take on a much more seasoned striker this time around, rocking the combat sports world with his KO win over former ONE FC champion and UFC vet Ben Askren months prior.
“Easiest fight of my career and biggest purse of my career all in one night,” Woodley said to ESPN. “Basically, they brought me in to take out the trash. I can’t wait to shut this bitch up. This is getting done for the culture, the whole MMA community and boxing community, to rid this guy of combat sports.”
A different beast than Askren despite their shared wrestling background, Woodley has a respectable 7 KO/TKO record of his 19 professional wins inside the cage. His last striking showcase was in his leveling of seasoned striker Darren Till before submitting him at UFC 228. But coming off of a four-fight losing streak against some of the divisions’ best before retirement, the betting odds have been remarkably scattershot across different outlets.
With a 3-0 record, many fans are disappointed that no one has demolished Paul yet. But with an apparent dedication to training, he might be seen as genuinely legitimate with a win over Woodley. Whether or not this will lead to any foray into MMA is anyone’s guess.
The date is set for August 28, but no venue or card details have been announced as of writing.
Break out the Everclear folks. We’re doing this again.
Gracie Helps Bullied Teen
As more and more incidents of violent bullying are documented worldwide, people have turned to martial arts as a means of protection in droves. Last week, a seventh-grader named Charlee Funes became the latest focal point of the conversation.
A victim of school bullying, pictures of Charlee’s brutalized face after an attack from a repeat harasser made the rounds on social media. Taking notice, BJJ black belt and Gracie Bullyproof creator Rener Gracie publicly offered to sponsor the girl’s martial arts training. She could travel to a nearby Gracie accredited school for free lessons on self-defense and de-escalation.
Taking him up on the offer, Charlee entered her first BJJ class under Professor Jeff Kim of Fusion MMA soon after. Gracie posted a video update of Charlee’s rapid progress, showcasing her escaping mount, taking the back, and other fundamentals.
For anyone who was a victim of bullying, it’s a heartwarming sight to see. Best of luck to Charlee on her martial arts journey!
Well, that’s all from me, folks. Tune in next time to read about the many time’s fellow Aces Writer Jeff Nelson stole my wallet!
Aces BJJ Blog staff writer and BJJ Blue belt under Edward “Scissor Hands” Berberich of Soulcraft BJJ. Kevin has been training BJJ for four years and complaining about Star Wars for over 20. Follow him on Instagram @kbrads_bjj