Along with the extraordinary knockouts over the past three months in ONE Championship, there have been some exceptional submission finishes, too.
The Home Of Martial Arts’ five events from From April to June have featured the sport’s best jiu-jitsu practitioners using their world-class skills to force their opponents to tap out.
Here are five of the best submissions from the second quarter of June 2018.
Shinya Aoki’s Deep Triangle Choke
His lightning-quick submission of Russian grappler Rasul Yakhyaev in Singapore proved that the Japanese veteran is showing no signs of losing his edge. Instead, he continues to sharpen his tools.
Following a chaotic start to the contest, in which the former ONE Lightweight World Champion jumped for a flying armbar, Aoki eventually found himself in Yakhyaev’s guard, and then transitioned to mount and locked up a triangle choke.
Yakhyaev valiantly tried to shake off “Tobikan Judan” and managed to get back to his feet to throw punches at the Japanese icon, but Aoki’s hold was deep.
After cutting an angle, pulling the head down, and tightening the squeeze, Aoki forced the Russian to tap at the 3:15 mark of the opening round.
Leandro Issa’s Thrilling Comeback
The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu World Champion was dropped seconds into the bantamweight contest by promotional newcomer Roman “Boom” Alvarez, but the veteran used all of his experience and intelligence to recover quickly and take the contest to the mat.
From the half guard position, Issa leaned on his elite jiu-jitsu credentials and fished for submissions. He clasped his arms around the Guam native’s head and left arm, slid into full mount, moved counterclockwise, and secured the arm-triangle choke to put his rival to sleep.
“Brodinho” scored the brilliant victory in 86 seconds, and now finds himself on a three-bout win streak – and in contention for a shot at the ONE Bantamweight World Title.
Marat Gafurov’s Slick Arm-Triangle
In April, Marat “Cobra” Gafurov successfully kicked off his journey back to the ONE Featherweight World Championship.
The Dagestani tamed surging contender Emilio “The Honey Badger” Urrutia in the first round of their featherweight tilt at ONE: HEROES OF HONOR in Manila, Philippines.
Although Urrutia hurt the former titleholder with his first leg kick, Gafurov limped forward, caught his adversary’s second leg kick, and took him to the ground. “Cobra” kept him on the canvas with a smothering top game, and he methodically unloaded punches to the body and the head.
Nearly two minutes into the tilt, he slid into half guard as he secured his arms around Urrutia’s head and left arm. He postured up and strategically moved counterclockwise to tighten the arm-triangle choke, and then leaned his shoulder forward and squeezed.
“The Honey Badger” defended in the right way, but Gafurov’s hold was in too deep. Within a matter of seconds, the American fell asleep.
Stefer Rahardian’s Relentless Rear-Naked Choke
Rahardian made his strawweight debut against seven-time Indian national wushu champion Himanshu Kaushik, and he barely gave Kaushik a chance to use his formidable striking. He quickly closed the distance and sent his adversary crashing to the mat with a powerful takedown.
The Indonesian swiftly stepped over his rival’s body to enter full mount, and when Kaushik tried to scramble, the Bali MMA representative immediately took his back, put his hooks in place, and delivered a barrage of ground and pound.
The Indonesian hero continued to soften Kaushik with punches, and slid his left arm underneath Kaushik’s chin as soon as the opportunity presented itself.
He locked the choke in with his right arm, and adjusted his legs to a body triangle around his opponent’s waist to create a double squeeze. The wushu warrior had no choice but to submit halfway into the opening stanza.
Tetsuya Yamada’s Fantastic Submission
Also at ONE: GRIT AND GLORY, Japanese athlete Tetsuya “MMA Fantasista” Yamada notched a massive victory when he submitted former ONE Featherweight World Title challenger Eric “The Natural” Kelly just three minutes into the opening round.
After fending off some early strikes from the Filipino, Yamada began with a near-flawless sequence to bring the bout to the canvas.
He evaded a roundhouse kick, stepped in to grab his rival, and forced him to the ground. Once he had Kelly where he wanted him, “MMA Fantasista” instantly jumped on his opponent’s back, locked in his hooks, flattened the Filipino, and unloaded with rapid-fire punches.
As Yamada locked a figure-four around Kelly’s body, he snuck his left arm underneath the Filipino’s chin, pushed his right arm away, and secured the rear-naked choke.
“The Natural” was caught, and he was forced to tap.