The Jiu-Jitsu lessons and Rodrigo Damm’s armbar on TUF Brazil

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Mario Yamasaki raises Rodrigo Damm's arm on TUF Brazil. Publicity photo.

Long-time Jiu-Jitsu and wrestling ace Rodrigo Damm moved ahead on TUF Brazil this Sunday, pushing Green Team, coached by Vitor Belfort, to a 3-0 lead over Wanderlei Silva’s Blue Team. In the featherweight bout wrapping up the week, Damm, who has prior experience fighting under the Strikeforce banner, at Japanese MMA events and Brazil’s Jungle Fight, put in a solid performance over the game John Macapá.

Damm (9w, 5l) started out displaying good striking, to which the opponent from Brazil’s north returned in kind. Still in the first round, Damm landed two solid takedowns. Now in the second, the battle evened out, prompting the judges to call for a third, decisive, round.

Less fatigued, Rodrigo managed to land a takedown and attempt an americana arm lock, which John Macapá duly defended, responding by nearly taking back and then mounting, in a thrilling affair. But time had run out. Once it was over, two judges decided in favor of Rodrigo Damm, who goes through to the divisional semifinal via split decision.

What readers need to know is this: Why didn’t the americana bear fruit?

“The americana didn’t work because Rodrigo didn’t trap Macapá’s hips,” explains Professor Andrezinho Nogueira of the Brazilian state of Ceará. “There’s no way you’ll get the guy if he’s free to move. You have to trap his hips with your legs, that’s where the leverage comes from,” he opined.

Now, following the episode Rodrigo Damm and Godofredo Pepey are through to the next stage of the featherweight contest, while Daniel Sarafian is the only middleweight qualified thus far.

Watch the complete TUF Brazil episode here.

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