Best butterfly guard players

Discussion in 'Grappling Technique' started by nauhry, Jun 3, 2014.

  1. nauhry

    nauhry White Belt

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    Just wondering who the best butterfly guard players are out there- butterfly is probably my go-to guard, but with all the berimbolo DLR craziness going on, I've had problems finding a 'role model' to sloppily emulate :D Jean-Jacques Machado, Marcelo Garcia and Leo Santos are some names that spring to mind- anyone else? Any suggestions would be appreciated!
     
  2. Uchi Mata

    Uchi Mata Preaching the gospel of heel hooks and left kicks

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    Robson Moura is also a very good butterfly guard player, but Marcelo Garcia is the best by far and a subscription to MGinAction will get you more butterfly material than you could ever absorb.
     
  3. Zankou

    Zankou Muscle and Hate Staff Member Senior Moderator

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    The sad truth is that few guys play pure "butterfly guard" outside of mma. In the modern game, butterfly guard is really more a set of principles that link the hook sweep or shin to shin position with leglocks/1 legged x guard.

    For true butterfly guard against a kneeling opponent, I would watch Marcelo and Leo Santos. I would augment that with watching some guys who are sick at transitioning between butterfly guard and leglocks (rather than 1 legged x). In the gi, I would also focus on watching some guys who are great off a sitting collar drag (like braulio).

    I really don't think you can get away from learning a lot of modern half guard/DLR/RDLR even if you are a butterfly guard player. It's not the kind of guard where you can sit there and avoid transitioning into other guards. You will need a versatile set of leg attacks if you are a butterfly guard player, period. They can be leglocks, x guard, inverting DLR/RDLR, or regular wrestling takedowns. But you are going to need to attack the legs like a dog as a butterfly player, because attacking the legs is where your sweeps are going to come from. The more traditional attacks on the head and arms combined with hook sweep (basically like closed guard with hooks in) is not something you are going to be able to forcibly sit and work against advanced opponents for any length of time.
     
  4. Shemhazai

    Shemhazai Black Belt

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    This.

    For what it's worth, I personally find that RDLR transitions nicely into shin-on-shin on the same side and butterfly on the opposite side. The former is useful when the opponent kills your distance control, or tries to halt the single leg, and the latter comes in handy any time your knees get redirected, or sitting up to recover vs. a front side pass (Marcelo style).
     
  5. Difeco

    Difeco Blue Belt

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    I couldn't disagree more with you guys...The reason people use DLR and inversions is because someone started to use it and dominate. It's not a superior guard, but the players who were using it were, bc they were training harder and were talented.

    If some "new Miyao Bros" started using butterfly, they would have the same success. Not because of the guard, but because they WORK HARD, are TALENTED and IMPOSE THEIR GAME.

    So...don't limit your game to other people game!

    (answering: Leo Santos, Marcelo, Galv
     
  6. Uchi Mata

    Uchi Mata Preaching the gospel of heel hooks and left kicks

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  7. brollikk

    brollikk Green Belt

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  8. KneeShield

    KneeShield Orange Belt

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    Rafael Formiga Barbosa
     
  9. Difeco

    Difeco Blue Belt

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    rules? they are still very similar to the time when butterfly was more popular.

    What happens is that guard pullers are lazier now...butterfly comes easily if you pull closed guard.
    You guys are just thinking about Lightweight and under...Look at Worlds 2014:
    MW: Lo sweeping with X, Otavio with sit ups (ok, a DLR derivation), Vitor Oliveira with HG and pressure passing, Estima and Calasans with closed guard.
    LHW: Galv
     
  10. pistol3

    pistol3 Orange Belt

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    I rolled with him last week. I felt completely helpless in his butterfly guard. He was doing helicopter sweeps at will haha.
     
  11. sha

    sha Geekjitsu Black Belt

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    It's really hard to force someone to stay in your butterfly guard if they want to back up though, you just don't have the same control as in DLR/RDLR unless you already have super-deep grips.
     
  12. Difeco

    Difeco Blue Belt

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    If they want to back up you gotta have sweep and subs as an answer...if you are just holding, this logic applies to almost any guard (except 50-50, closed an maybe dhg)

    To illustrate what I'm talking about you guys should watch Michael Liera at the Pans and Worlds this year. He beat 90% of his opponents with CLOSED GUARD attacks.
    How he got there: DLR/Spider guard

    It's just a matter of adapting your game to it, without ignoring the modern positions. Anybody can play any guard and be successful.
     
  13. Uchi Mata

    Uchi Mata Preaching the gospel of heel hooks and left kicks

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    It's a little easier to force someone to remain in closed guard than it is to force them to stay in butterfly. Butterfly is like any other open guard, because it's open your opponent can move a lot more and you have to be ready to transition to other guards. Butterfly runs up against this more often than most because it essentially requires your opponent to try and pass on the knees or otherwise you're playing something other than butterfly.
     
  14. sha

    sha Geekjitsu Black Belt

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    I don't know. You'll see matches where people just spend a ton of time in DLR or RDLR. That rarely happens with butterfly guard unless your opponent is asleep at the wheel.

    For me it's just not the same type of guard, it's more of a transitional position than a guard you establish and hang out in. Which is why you don't see it that much: even when people do use it, it lasts a lot shorter than some of these other guards.
     
  15. Shemhazai

    Shemhazai Black Belt

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    This is pretty much what the Mendes bros. say as well
     
  16. Uchi Mata

    Uchi Mata Preaching the gospel of heel hooks and left kicks

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  17. ganssle

    ganssle Blue Belt

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  18. Shemhazai

    Shemhazai Black Belt

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    You have a few points, but the main difference is that RDLR and DLR are extremely easily available due to how people approach the guard. (Not to say that they are wrong to approach in this manner.) Closed guard and butterfly require a lot more coaxing and trickery to set up.
     
  19. ganssle

    ganssle Blue Belt

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    They are accessible in terms of entry? Sure.. But we're talking about working very hard at doing something, I don't think "it's harder to get closed guard" is a worthy obstacle/deterrent when deciding whether or not to study them extensively. But yes, I can't disagree that DRL and RDLR are easier to enter than butterfly.
    Personally I love using trickery B-)
     
  20. Uchi Mata

    Uchi Mata Preaching the gospel of heel hooks and left kicks

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    Closed guard suffers the same problem as butterfly in that it's hard to achieve on a standing opponent unless you're jumping into it from standing. Closed guard is awesome, I love it and use it and I also know top guys will fight like hell to avoid the closed guard because it's so dangerous. But if you're playing open guard trying to get to closed and your opponent stands (which happens most of the time in modern BJJ) then you're basically out of luck. DLR and RDLR are widely used not only because they're effective but also because your opponent can't really prevent you from establishing those guards. As such it makes a lot of sense to study them because you'll almost certainly get to use them whereas closed or butterfly are much more situational and harder to impose.

    I also think you see a lot more closed guard than butterfly in high level competition, so I'm not sure it's a great analogy.
     

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