Sambo Practitioners Struggle in ONE Championship’s Submission Grappling Division, But Musumeci Remains Optimistic

April 19, 2023
From: Spartacus

Mikey Musumeci, a highly decorated Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioner, has expressed his belief that Sambo practitioners will eventually find success inside the Circle. ONE Championship, one of the leading mixed martial arts organisations in the world, introduced a submission grappling division in 2022. Since then, a number of world-class Sambo champions have been struggling to secure victories in this division.

In Musumeci’s recent fight, he faced Gatumur Bayanduuren, a Sambo world champion, during ONE Fight Night 6 in January. Despite Bayanduuren’s impressive credentials, Musumeci emerged victorious after an intense battle. However, the Sambo champion suffered an ACL and MCL tear during the fight, which put him out of action for some time.

Musumeci’s victory over Bayanduuren demonstrated his exceptional skill and experience in submission grappling. However, he also acknowledges that Sambo practitioners possess unique techniques and styles that can be effective in this division. With time, Musumeci believes that these athletes will adapt to the rules and regulations of ONE Championship and start achieving success in the Circle.

As the competition in the submission grappling division continues to intensify, it will be interesting to see how Sambo practitioners fare against other elite grapplers. One thing is for certain, Musumeci’s prediction that they will eventually find success inside the Circle will undoubtedly add to the excitement and anticipation of future matchups.

Musumeci also noted that the level of competition in ONE Championship’s submission grappling division is incredibly high, with some of the best grapplers from around the world competing for glory. This means that Sambo practitioners must be at the top of their game and constantly improve their skills in order to be competitive in this division.

Despite the challenges that Sambo practitioners face in the submission grappling division, Musumeci remains optimistic that they will eventually find success inside the Circle. He believes that with time and experience, Sambo athletes will adapt to the rules of the division and showcase their unique techniques and styles to achieve victory.

“I think the best “sambo” people aren’t actually just sambo people. The dagistan team where Khabib and Islam are from they are actually extremely high level collegiate wrestlers. So with their extremely high wrestling level, plus learning any grappling submissions, it makes them extremely dominant. I think the ruleset in sports sambo is limiting (cannot choke someone from back more judo based rules it seems) and combat sambo is great for mma, but for the jiu jitsu grappling ruleset I think it has shown a lack of skills, which overtime these sambo people can for sure develop, but for now they are limited. :)”

Musumeci highlighted the fact that Sambo is a highly effective martial art that combines elements of judo, wrestling, and other grappling arts. However, the rules of Sambo competitions are different from those of ONE Championship’s submission grappling division. For example, in Sambo, competitors can use leg locks and heel hooks, which are not allowed in ONE Championship. This means that Sambo practitioners must adjust their game plan and adapt to the rules of the division in order to be successful.

On May 5, Mikey Musumeci, the reigning ONE flyweight submission grappling world champion, will make his return to the Circle to defend his title against newcomer Osamah Almarwai at ONE Fight Night 10. Musumeci has been on an impressive run, remaining undefeated inside the Circle with notable victories over grappling legends such as Masakazu Imanari, Cleber Sousa, and Gantumur Bayanduuren.

However, Almarwai represents a formidable challenge for the champion. The Yemeni athlete holds the distinction of being the first black belt IBJJF World No-Gi and Pan No-Gi champion from his country. Almarwai trains under BJJ legend Andre Galvao and has a wealth of experience in high-level competition. He will undoubtedly be looking to capitalise on this opportunity to capture ONE Championship gold and make a name for himself in the grappling world.

Musumeci will have to be at his best to fend off the challenge posed by Almarwai. He has proven himself to be a highly skilled and adaptable athlete, capable of adjusting his game plan to suit his opponents’ strengths and weaknesses. With his extensive experience and championship pedigree, Musumeci will undoubtedly be a tough opponent for Almarwai to overcome.

As the two grappling stars prepare to face off in the Circle, fans of the sport are eagerly anticipating what promises to be an intense and exciting matchup. With both athletes possessing a wealth of talent and experience, it will be interesting to see who comes out on top and emerges as the undisputed champion of the flyweight submission grappling division.

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