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BJJ Fanatics Instructionals

WNO 24 Card, Superb Card And The Return Of Gordon Ryan This Thursday

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Very likely the most exciting card of the year, thus far, in no-gi jiu-jitsu is taking place tomorrow and it will be streamed by FloGrappling. We are talking about the 24th edition of Who’s Number One (WNO), which will feature an all-star cast of some of the finest and most exciting grapplers in the sport right now. From top to bottom, the main card is stacked, if you don’t believe it, keep reading this article.

WNO 24 MAIN CARD

ETHAN CRELINSTEN X DEANDRE CORBE

Two of North America’s top 145 lb athletes. The B-Team and Standard JJ aces have been in the game for a very long time, both have a preference for the top position though they are different at the same time. Crelinsten favors creative scrambles and thrives in the chaos while Corbe is a more task-based competitor who prefers to control and stifle movement.

When it comes to competing, different approaches here as well. Corbe is very active and competes as often as possible, attesting to this are his 21 matches in 2024 against some of the best in the world in different weight classes. A very distinct methodology to Canada’s Ethan who only had 3 bouts this year, none of those against a ranked opponent.

ELIJAH DORSEY X JOZEF CHEN

The clash we are most looking forward to at WNO24 is this gem between the USA’s ADCC Trials winner at 77 kg (170 lb) and the European ADCC Trials winner in the same weight class. Stylistically these two match very well as both can wrestle, both love scrambles, both tend to prefer passing positions, and both can finish. This clash will likely be decided by whoever manages to establish the top position and maintain it. Getting there should be a lot of fun to watch.

JACOB COUCH X JONNATAS GRACIE

Somewhat out of the box, this clash between 88-kg ADCC East Coast Trials winner & 77-kg Brazil runner-up is exactly what we like to watch from pro-events like WNO. On paper, this should be fairly easy pickings for Couch, but only on paper. Jonnatas Gracie is a serious challenge, a very tough guard passer with solid leg-lock defense, who can also play from the bottom as shown at UFC Fight Pass earlier this month.

Couch is coming with one of the most dangerous closed guards in the game and a deadly inside heel hook. There is a chance these two will cancel each other out, but if they both play to their offense, this will be a fun one to follow.

TAINAN DALPRA X JAY RODRIGUEZ

What an absolute banger of a match-up. Although he is one of the best middleweight Gi players in the world, Tainan is still very much a rookie in this no-gi ruleset. Jumping right in the fire, Dalpra will be facing quite a challenge in “Jay-Rod” who is one of the top-ranked athletes at 88 kg (194 lb), a weight class above Dalpra who beat one of Tainan’s main training partners in Jonatha Alves recently and beat him fairly decisively. On paper, Rod has the better takedowns, athleticism, and scrambles, while Dalpra brings a more cerebral approach to the game. Expect this to be one of the best and most interesting matches to follow in this awesome card.

ANNA RODRIGUES X ADELE FORNARINO

Although these two have been competing for some time in similar weight classes, they have yet to compete against each other. Two very opposing styles here, with Adele being more of a constrictor of movement-type player and Rodrigues having a mobility-based approach.

Anna Rodrigues has more accolades with the gi, and is at the very top of the ladder there while Fornarino (although very accomplished with the gi) has focussed on her no-gi career for a lot longer and hasn’t competed with the gi in well over a year. Super fun match with no clear favorite.

DIEGO PATO X FABRICIO ANDREY

Two of the most exciting under 66 kg (145 lb) competitors in the sport with Pato bringing a deadly and very creative leg-lock game and Andrey bringing speed, outside passing, and takedowns. In this classic grappling match-up between the quick & athletic guard passer and the methodical guard player, expect Pato to take away Andrey’s standing advantage early by pulling guard. Diego will likely be looking to lace up Fabricio’s legs while Andrey will be looking to pass from the outside, who will win this battle is a coin toss.

VICTOR HUGO X JAVIER ZARUSKI

Hugo is one of the most accomplished athletes in the sport with multiple world titles while being also a large ultra-heavyweight. He will be going up against challenger Javier Zaruski, who is a super-heavyweight, fairly new to the black belt division with a ton of talent, and an IBJJF World Title in no-gi last year as his biggest achievement. On paper, Hugo is larger, and more experienced, with the more expressive titles. All pressure will be on the Big Man Flow, time will tell if Zaruski can cause the upset.

GORDON RYAN X JOSH SAUNDERS

Coming out of his long hiatus due to his chronic stomach condition is the biggest star in jiu-jitsu, Gordon Ryan. The American will face Australian athlete, Josh Sanders, an ADCC Trials winner in the +99 kilo division who competes mostly in Australia. The fact that Sanders does not compete in big shows regularly left us with limited information on his style. From what we saw, though he is competent, he did not appear to be quite world-class in technical ability at this point, but he makes up for what he lacks in size, power, and aggression. Although there will be a technical gap here it will be interesting to see Australia’s strongest ultra-heavyweight match up against the best in the world, Gordon Ryan.

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