WNO: Nicky Rodriguez Defeats Yuri Simoes In Co-Main Event

The co-main event of Who’s Number One: Gordon Ryan vs. Vagner Rocha saw the match between multiple-time ADCC champion Yuri Simoes and 2019 ADCC silver medalist Nicky Rodriguez go the distance. When the clock ran out, though, Rodriguez’s heavy pressure won him the favor of the judges.

Simoes pulled guard right away, and Rodriguez got to work trying to pass. He kept heavy pressure on Simoes and quickly passed the guard, trying to get to the back before Simoes recovered and returned to playing guard. Rodriguez was relentless with his pressure and very nearly got to mount before Simoes successfully got butterfly hooks back in. Rodriguez got to his feet and stepped back, getting low again after a reset. Simoes wasn’t afraid to push against Rodriguez’s face, and after stepping back for a moment, Rodriguez returned to his low and tight pressure from guard. He again nearly got to mount before Simoes pushed him away and brought the match back to the feet for a moment before pulling guard again.

With under eight minutes to go, Simoes briefly separated himself from Rodriguez. Rodriguez, however, was relentless, getting to mount and then transitioning to the saddle and then a front headlock when Simoes recovered guard. For as good as Rodriguez’s offense was, though, Simoes’ defense was equally impressive, and he succeeded in getting back to guard. He pulled Rodriguez’s shoulder forward, and Rodriguez pulled himself out and got back to his feet. The competitors both wrestled on their feet briefly before returning to their familiar battle, with Simoes on the bottom and Rodriguez staying low to pass.

With about three and a half minutes to go, Rodriguez got past his opponent’s legs and tried to take the back, but again, Simoes’ guard retention was too good to make the opportunity last. The match returned to the feet with about a minute to go, and Simoes pulled guard and defended himself against Rodriguez’s final passing attempts. Simoes attempted a leg attack just before time ran out, but couldn’t capitalize on it before the clock wound down to zero.

Nicky Rodriguez was declared the winner by judges’ decision.


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