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Grappling Exodus: CJI vs. ADCC – More Huge Names In Talks To Join & What We Know So Far

Grappling Exodus: CJI vs. ADCC – More Huge Names In Talks To Join & What We Know So Far

The Grappling Exodus: Craig Jones Invitational vs. ADCC – What We Know So Far

The grappling world is abuzz with a seismic shift as top-tier athletes reconsider their allegiance to the Abu Dhabi Combat Club (ADCC) in favor of the newly announced Craig Jones Invitational (CJI). This unprecedented move has sent shockwaves through the community, with many speculating about the future of both competitions. Let’s delve into everything we know so far about the CJI, the ADCC exodus, and the star-studded lineup that could redefine competitive jiu-jitsu.

The Craig Jones Invitational: A New Era in Grappling

The Craig Jones Invitational has quickly become a beacon for grapplers seeking fair pay, transparency, and broader recognition. Spearheaded by Craig Jones, a renowned figure in the jiu-jitsu community, the CJI promises a million-dollar grand prize and a commitment to treating athletes with the respect and financial support they deserve.

Victor Hugo, a multiple-time world champion, recently made headlines by announcing his decision to compete at CJI instead of ADCC. Hugo highlighted several key reasons for his switch, including the transparency of viewership metrics, fair compensation, and the mission-driven approach of the CJI. “The grand prize plus all the things combined I think are the main things that got me interested in the tournament and also to stand for what’s right,” Hugo stated.

The ADCC Exodus

The ADCC has long been considered the pinnacle of no-gi grappling, but the emergence of the CJI has led to a notable exodus of talent. Athletes are increasingly drawn to the CJI’s promise of financial security and fair treatment.

Hugo’s departure is just the beginning. Rumors swirl about other high-profile competitors potentially making the switch. Notably, rumors (from BJJEE’s trusted sources) have emerged regarding negotiations with legends like Kron Gracie, Buchecha, Makenzie Dern and even the legendary Marcelo Garcia to all compete in either the one of the brackets or in superfights.

Here is a list of notable grappling athletes who have joined the Craig Jones Invitational (CJI) so far:

  1. Victor Hugo:
    • Multiple-time world champion known for his dynamic grappling skills.
  2. Ffion Davies:
    • One of the top female grapplers in the world, known for her aggressive and technical style.
  3. The Tackett Brothers (William and Andrew):
    • Known for their aggressive and relentless grappling styles, both brothers bring a high level of excitement to the competition.
  4. Gabi Garcia:
    • A dominant force in women’s grappling, known for her size, strength, and technical prowess.
  5. Craig Jones:
    • One of the most well-known figures in the grappling community, Jones is not only organizing the event but also competing.
  6. Luke Rockhold:
    • Former UFC Middleweight Champion, bringing his MMA experience and grappling skills to the tournament.
  7. Jozef Chen:
    • A rising star in the grappling world, known for his technical skills and potential.
  8. Nicky Ryan:
    • Known for his technical proficiency and being part of the renowned Ryan family in jiu-jitsu.

Additional Athletes Joined CJI

  1. John Gabriel Rocha:
    • A respected figure in jiu-jitsu, known for his competitive spirit and technical acumen.
  2. Nicky Rodriguez (Nick Rod):
  • Known for his athleticism and explosive grappling style, Nicky Rod is a prominent name in the grappling community.
  1. Jacob Rodriguez (Jay Rod):
  • The younger brother of Nicky Rodriguez, known for his rapid rise in the grappling scene and his competitive prowess.

What to Expect at ADCC

Despite the exodus, ADCC remains a formidable competition with a rich history and a loyal following. The upcoming ADCC events are expected to feature intense matchups, though the absence of some key players could shift the dynamics. New talents are likely to emerge, eager to make their mark in the absence of some of the sport’s most celebrated figures.

ADCC organizers are undoubtedly aware of the shifting landscape and may respond with changes to maintain their prestige and competitive allure. While the loss of stars like Victor Hugo to CJI is significant, it also opens doors for up-and-coming grapplers to seize the spotlight.

The Star-Studded Lineup and Future Prospects

The Craig Jones Invitational is already shaping up to be a historic event. Victor Hugo has expressed excitement about competing against John Gabriel Rocha, a revered figure he has admired since his early days in the sport. This potential matchup is just one example of the high-caliber bouts that fans can anticipate.

With the CJI promoting transparency, fair pay, and an inclusive approach, it is poised to attract more top-tier talent. The participation of jiu-jitsu legends and current champions could elevate the CJI to new heights, challenging the ADCC’s long-held dominance in the grappling world.

The Craig Jones Invitational represents a paradigm shift in competitive grappling, prioritizing athlete welfare and financial transparency. As more grapplers choose the CJI over ADCC, the landscape of the sport is set to evolve dramatically. Whether this signals the dawn of a new era or merely a temporary upheaval remains to be seen, but one thing is certain: the world of competitive jiu-jitsu is in for an exciting ride.

Stay tuned as we continue to monitor the developments and bring you the latest updates on the Craig Jones Invitational, ADCC, and the evolving roster of grappling’s finest athletes.