As the first of the year rolls around it is only natural to take a look at the past year of MMA and reminisce about the best fights, best rivalries, best knockouts, best everything really. MMAFighting recently deemed Anthony Pettis' submission of Benson Henderson the Submission the Year:
From guard, Pettis was instantly proactive. As Henderson tried to establish his posture and get his hands and elbows set for ground and pound, Pettis whipped his hips counterclockwise and elevated off the mat like the un-turn of a screw. It was an act remarkable not simply for the speed by which everything transpired, but for it's technical beauty. Pettis established the proper angle with the hip turn, but also managed to get his hips high enough so Henderson couldn't elbow escape. Pettis closed the proverbial walls around Henderson with an additional adjustment underneath with is elbow by positioning it for even greater destruction. One can only imagine the cascading feeling of terror and disappointment that must've washed over him as he knew the only thing keeping Pettis from becoming the new champion was the mere formality of his own surrender.
And surrender he did, although not with the characteristic physical tap but a verbal tap only the pair could hear. Some have suggested this partially ruined the submission by making it anti-climactic. While the home crowd eventually celebrated their new champion, there was a moment between Pettis letting go of the arm and the audience comprehending what had just happened. After all, only Pettis heard the verbal tap Henderson gave him.
But that intimacy is precisely what elevates the submission. Pettis managed to secure it in a title fight for a divisional belt in what is arguably the UFC's toughest weight category. And not only did he achieve the result against a rival who is nothing if not defensively strong and often heralded for his particular ability to withstand submission attempts, he did so with a submission so vicious and damaging that Henderson resorted to telling Pettis he was done because tapping with a physical hand wouldn't be quick enough to spare himself from injury.
Pettis knows how Henderson gave up and no one else does. He not only gets to keep the belt, but the sound of Henderson's voice frantically pushing through his mouth guard to hurriedly acquiesce is his and only his to enjoy.
There's often another overlooked aspect to Pettis' outstanding finish, namely, armbar submissions from the guard are rare in high-level competition. That's true both in MMA and especially sport jiu-jitsu. The truth is securing that particular submission from standard closed guard is extremely hard to do. Why? It's hard to break your opponent's posture. It's hard to move underneath quickly enough to get the clamp. Defense from that position, relatively speaking, is easy.
read entire article...
The Underground, generally speaking, has a large proportion of members that actually train MMA or BJJ than other media sites, so what do you think? Do you agree that this was the best submision in 2013, and if not, what was?
Related MMA gear from the UG Store