UnderGround Forums Jimmy Smith: "Ngannou ground game was white belt"

28 days ago
2/5/06
Posts: 9491

Saw this during the post-fight show and thought maybe that was a bit harsh, but possibly true, as well.

Made me a bit sad about the depth of the HW division though, when the #1 UFC HW contender in 2018 basically has (in Jimmy Smith's opinion anyway) at best barely fundamental ground skills in the sport of MMA.

Was Smith too harsh, or was it simply an accurate assessment of Ngannou once he was on the mat?

28 days ago
1/14/18
Posts: 34

I would say fully accurate. I had said leading up to the fight and we saw during the fight that Francis didn't use any actual technique when trying to get up just pure power and strength. And unfortunately technique beats power 9 times out of 10.

Also if you look at a lot of his training footage his submission attempts don't look anything close to how they should. No proper hand positions, set ups etc. 

I specifically recall a clip in embedded where he is going for some kind of guillotine but is literally just yanking on the neck of his trainer. Don't get me wrong that shit probably hurts with the strength of the guy. But it just isn't going to work against Werdum, Cain, Stipe etc. 

With that said, he has learnt a lot in the last 5 years so hopefully he will take a lot from this fight and try and bridge those gaps.

28 days ago
9/5/11
Posts: 34669

He’s actually a brown belt under the great Wilt “Bombaata” Chamberlain. 

No one gives Bombaata the respect he deserves. 

28 days ago
1/1/17
Posts: 101
MMALegends - 

I would say fully accurate. I had said leading up to the fight and we saw during the fight that Francis didn't use any actual technique when trying to get up just pure power and strength. And unfortunately technique beats power 9 times out of 10.

Also if you look at a lot of his training footage his submission attempts don't look anything close to how they should. No proper hand positions, set ups etc. 

I specifically recall a clip in embedded where he is going for some kind of guillotine but is literally just yanking on the neck of his trainer. Don't get me wrong that shit probably hurts with the strength of the guy. But it just isn't going to work against Werdum, Cain, Stipe etc. 

With that said, he has learnt a lot in the last 5 years so hopefully he will take a lot from this fight and try and bridge those gaps.


Indeed. and furthermore, the person who he was submitting wasnt a bjj black belt. Or even a bjj coach. It was his striking coach, that short 5'3 black guy. Francis did not have a grappling/wrestling coach in his corner for his title fight against a wrestler. Imagine... UFC Training Institute.... But he can punch really hard though at least.
28 days ago
11/28/03
Posts: 97823

his bjj didnt look good, but his wrestling was far better than i expected

28 days ago
11/1/03
Posts: 14987

I'm thinking his gas tank was more or an issue than his ground game buts it hard to judge. Stipe didn't g&p as much as he usually does, i'm guessing to mantain better control.

28 days ago
4/15/16
Posts: 828
Vitor is a black belt and looked white belt against Weidman.

Sometimes your opponent is that much better. Ever see Chuck Norris vs Rickson?

With a full tank of gas he is probably better than what he showed against Stipe.

I remember seeing him practicing on bottom in all the UFC institute clips saw, so we know he at least tried to prepare.

Stipe is just a beast and been grappling WAAAAY longer.
28 days ago
8/28/16
Posts: 165

Ngannu has submitted a brown belt in the ufc, i wouldn't call that white belt skills, his gas tank was the issue 

28 days ago
9/14/15
Posts: 546
White belt would have been finished inside of 5
28 days ago
4/17/17
Posts: 1101
Ngannou's strength and toughness kept him live on the ground. He didnt show much skill or natural grappling instincts.

That said, lots of BJJ blackbelts would lose position battles against Stipe and get beat up on the ground.
28 days ago
12/28/14
Posts: 4762

For a man as athletic as he is, his bottom game is severely lacking. It doesn't make sense to have 4 African guys with not a single BJJ belt or wrestling match between them all in the corner. At some point you have to improve the quality of coaching or this will keep being the result

28 days ago
8/6/06
Posts: 41370

He actually has submission wins, in the ufc even, and against a D1 wrestler. Ngannou has submitted, and dominated multiple D1 wrestlers. Stipe is more than just a D1 wrestler. He's the best heavyweight in the world.

28 days ago
8/6/06
Posts: 41371
failure at life -

For a man as athletic as he is, his bottom game is severely lacking. It doesn't make sense to have 4 African guys with not a single BJJ belt or wrestling match between them all in the corner. At some point you have to improve the quality of coaching or this will keep being the result

He had 0 African guys in his corner. At least neither of his two coaches I know, were African. Although they were both striking coaches, so you are right about that.

28 days ago
9/27/15
Posts: 4800
Misaki - Vitor is a black belt and looked white belt against Weidman.

Sometimes your opponent is that much better. Ever see Chuck Norris vs Rickson?

With a full tank of gas he is probably better than what he showed against Stipe.

I remember seeing him practicing on bottom in all the UFC institute clips saw, so we know he at least tried to prepare.

Stipe is just a beast and been grappling WAAAAY longer.

Vitor is a terrible bjj black belt though from what I've see ogpf him in mma..

No matter Ngannous cardio, if he goes ballistic in the first round abd throws a million punches, he will be gassed..that and if he uses strength to get out of moves instead of technique..

It will be very interesting to see how good Ngannou can get though

Jimmy Smith was right on the money and I like his honesty
28 days ago
7/12/15
Posts: 19950
He looked lost. It was disappointing.
28 days ago
8/6/06
Posts: 41377
ons ear -
Misaki - Vitor is a black belt and looked white belt against Weidman.

Sometimes your opponent is that much better. Ever see Chuck Norris vs Rickson?

With a full tank of gas he is probably better than what he showed against Stipe.

I remember seeing him practicing on bottom in all the UFC institute clips saw, so we know he at least tried to prepare.

Stipe is just a beast and been grappling WAAAAY longer.

Vitor is a terrible bjj black belt though from what I've see ogpf him in mma..

No matter Ngannous cardio, if he goes ballistic in the first round abd throws a million punches, he will be gassed..that and if he uses strength to get out of moves instead of technique..

It will be very interesting to see how good Ngannou can get though

Jimmy Smith was right on the money and I like his honesty

Vitor competed at ADCC. There are 0 shitty black belts that have competed at ADCC.

28 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 1238

Not saying Vitor is terrrible but in the early days of ADCC there were some VERY qustionable competitors. It is not like it is today.  Watch the guy who fought Naoya Uematsu in the opeing round of the year he competed (just one example).

  Ken Shamrocks brother (not Frank) is another example.

28 days ago
4/19/09
Posts: 27879

Africa has grappling arts. so maybe no need for BJJ..

28 days ago
4/19/09
Posts: 27880

 

28 days ago
9/10/10
Posts: 3704

because over the years the heavyweights have been so good at jiu jitsu

 

Champ Slyvia - white belt with no coordination

Champ Couture- well he could squeeze on people

Champ Arlovksi- i have seen him execute a closed guard

Champ Lesnar- will he had a giant sword that looked like a dick

Champ Cain- wrestler, never seen jj on him

Champ JDS- i think i have heard he has some belt never seen it

Champ Werdum- well there is the exception

Champ Miocic- wrestler, if he had any jj he woulda subbed ngganou in the 1st

28 days ago
10/17/13
Posts: 4812
Yeah, because NGannou was known for his Grappling.
28 days ago
3/14/16
Posts: 14063
kyleburkle -

because over the years the heavyweights have been so good at jiu jitsu

 

Champ Slyvia - white belt with no coordination

Champ Couture- well he could squeeze on people

Champ Arlovksi- i have seen him execute a closed guard

Champ Lesnar- will he had a giant sword that looked like a dick

Champ Cain- wrestler, never seen jj on him

Champ JDS- i think i have heard he has some belt never seen it

Champ Werdum- well there is the exception

Champ Miocic- wrestler, if he had any jj he woulda subbed ngganou in the 1st

Mir, barnet, big nog.....
28 days ago
7/11/05
Posts: 4012
Thingading -

Saw this during the post-fight show and thought maybe that was a bit harsh, but possibly true, as well.

Made me a bit sad about the depth of the HW division though, when the #1 UFC HW contender in 2018 basically has (in Jimmy Smith's opinion anyway) at best barely fundamental ground skills in the sport of MMA.

Was Smith too harsh, or was it simply an accurate assessment of Ngannou once he was on the mat?

100% accurate

28 days ago
6/18/16
Posts: 6748
And a black belt in toughness. I believe he will be champ one day.
28 days ago
7/23/15
Posts: 1548

Joe Rogan was told after the fight by Francis's camp that he didn't practice any grappling because he didn't like it. lol