Metamoris 6 happened this week-end and I think the fights were great. The 20 minutes, sub only format still works exceedingly well and as time goes on I believe the match ups make more and more sense.

Contains minor spoilers. The amazing photos are from Stefan Kocev.

Prefight meditations

Preliminary fights

The sixth edition had a few novelties, including prelim’ fights that funnily enough were among the absolute bests of the night. Sinistro was on fire and had the smoothest transitions, and the clash of styles between Liera Jr. and Niedlinger is something to watch. Two very technical matches with a lot of action from hungry competitors.

That’s the point were I tuned out and watched the rest on the next day. Living in europe, it is pretty much impossible to watch Metamoris live. We’ve tried it twice, and it’s no fun: the matches would start at midnight but even after five editions they still can’t start on time. And because there are gigantic half an hour breaks in between the matches the main event is at 5AM, where every one just wants to go to bed. Hence, watching the replay the next day.

Friedrich VS Nunes

The quick recap on how Friedrich got his spot for M6 was good — not too long, not too short. Sadly Monson had to bail out and was replaced by Evandro Nunes who I hadn’t heard of. It’s a bit frustrating that there are so many changes between what Metamoris announces a card will be, and what it eventually is. I understand a lot of it is out of their hands but still.

The match was ok anyway. Friedrich is very impressive with his guard work and leg attacks, but Nunes managed to shut him down very effectively. The level difference was just too tight for any of both fighters to make a difference although I would have wished for Friedrich to adapt his game plan a little.

The good ones

I loved the Clark Gracie x Roberto Satoshi confrontation. Highly technical, great pace, they were both going at it. It bugs we that Clark kept going for the straight footlock because I feel it’s a rather low percentage attack, but he had impressive omoplata set-ups, especially the one on Satoshi’s turtle. The flying triangle vs guard pull was damn impressive too.

Dillon Danis repping for Beats

Cornelius x Ribeiro was cool too. Due to a post I saw on Facebook, I thought the match would end in a submission, without knowing for who… which made the match even more intense. At every near submission I was fired up as hell since, well, the chance of any of the two submitting the other is rather low. Xande was good, you could feel his old-man-strength from behind the screen. He eventually made a mistake and got into a pretty bad spot… and then of course escaped!

Finally, Danis x Lauzon was a bit unbalanced but still great to watch. Dillon is an absolute beast and I’m curious to see how he evolves. I definitely hope to see him fight again soon.

The bad ones

Please stop having Sonnen on Metamoris. After (predictably) getting tooled by Galvao, he was now stacked against Babalu. The match was boring as hell. Sonnen was contempt to wait in Babalu’s guard for the whole match without attempting anything, while Babalu had absolutely nu success with his guard but didn’t try something else either.

To be fair, Josh Barnett x Ryron Gracie wasn’t bad per say. As expected, it was very much unbalanced and a bit disappointing considering we expected Cyborg to fight Barnett. That said, Ryron did put up a good show. Keeping the match in stand up was very impressive; you could see how Barnett was clearly more powerfull, yet Gracie kept is posture incredibly straight. Once on the ground he did suffer a bit but again was impressively effective at defending Josh’s constant smothering. I guess he became a little too confident towards the end and Josh took advantage.

Josh Barnett and his night gawn

I have a greater respect for both of them after this fight. I really don’t like the way Ryron sees fights as either a proof of BJJ’s dominance, or a lesson learned. If you listen to him he never looses which is a bit bullshit. That said, he took the fight against Barnett and on late notice on top of that. He put up a good show and I appreciate that he was a god sportsman at the end, confirming the tap and not trying to pretend like it didn’t happen. As much as I disagree on his philosophy, there’s no denying he’s a good person and a true warrior.

Meanwhile Barnett showed once again that he has smarts as wel as skills. His comments were very classy, respectful and revelant. He also decided not to rip Ryrons ankle apart when he could, which to me is another sign of someone who’s not just a good fighter but also a good person.

The production

So while the fights were probably the best overall since M2, I’m constantly surprised by how little Metamoris is improving their presentation. The comments were rubbish for the most part. Bas Rutten does not know BJJ, he had a couple of lucky predictions but otherwise had only personal anecdotes to contribute, which is not what I expect fro ma commentator. His post fight interviews were crap, ranging from missed questions (how close was that armbar on Clark Gracie?) to downright disrespectful. Glover spent half of the time cracking jokes and the other half of the time trying to get the others no crack less jokes and focus on the fights. Rener was biased as always but had at least some good insights. The rolling commentaries were mostly a poor idea (though Dillon Danis did a good job).

I could lengthly explain what I expect from a good commentator, but it’s easier for me to just point you to Dan Lukeheart, for example anywhere in the video below. This is exactly what a commentator is supposed to do, nothing more, nothing less.

The production had a few stutters too, notably the wrong card showing up for Gracie x Satoshi (and Rutten not even noticing). Again, after five editions, you would expect less of that. The replays were also notably weak, showing the same angle as during the fight and without any slow motion.

Keenans hands, gladiator style

In short, great fights but needs to do better production-wise. And for fun, here’s my dream (albeit realistic) card for M7:

  • Rafael Mendes x Roberto Satoshi (gi)
  • Danis x Tonon (nogi)
  • Nicolini x Musumeci (gi)
  • Cornelius x Fariah (gi)
  • Buchecha x Barnett (nogi)