The ADCC East Coast Trials hosted a massive two-day event, quite literally.
It’s not only due to event relevance or top tier talent, but with the sheer volume involved as three tournament brackets had around 250 BJJ competitors each. With hundreds of BJJ black belts and talented grapplers competing to win just one slot per division to the biennial 2024 ADCC World Championships, this high level and physically grueling event provided for some nice action, and a lot of big upsets.
After several BJJ champs and pro grappling stars got eliminated, five ADCC 2024 invites were eventually awarded to the tournament winners in Dorian Olivarez, Elijah Dorsey, Jacob Couch, Paul Ardila, and Dan Manasoiu.
ADCC East Coast Trials recap: New champions and a teenage breakout star
The gold medalists from the three lightest — and deepest — divisions were all first time ADCC winners, as they each scored upsets and fended off ADCC vets and BJJ champions to win their brackets that had about 250 competitors each.
17-year-old Dorian Olivarez, a junior in high school, shocked onlookers as he ran the gauntlet in the stacked -66 kg bracket that’s filled with far more experienced adult competitors. He won seven matches, upsetting two of the tournament favorites in Ethan Crelinsten and Gianni Grippo, before beating Dominic Mejia in the finals.
Kade Ruotolo currently holds that record of youngest ADCC world champion after winning in 2022 at 19-years-old. After earning his 2024 slot, could Olivarez go on to break that record? Either way, he sure looks like he has the potential to have a long and decorated career after this massive breakout performance.
Jacob Couch also made his case as the biggest winner from the weekend after his fantastic run at -88 kg. The Daisy Fresh product got a perfect seven wins and seven submissions, taking out top seeds in Elder Cruz and Jay Rodriguez to win his first ever ADCC trial.
At -77 kg, Nicky Ryan was looking to have the tournament of his life, winning six matches all by quick submissions en route to the finals. Elijah Dorsey had other plans though, as he pulled off the seemingly improbable upset in a very deep division. Dorsey outworked more accomplished vets in Oliver Taza and Nicky Ryan to book his ticket to his first ADCC World Championships.
New Wave’s Dan Manasoiu ran through the field of heavyweights to take gold, showing improvements and even landing his trademark smother choke multiple times in the tournament.
No ADCC 2024 invites yet for women
The three women’s divisions didn’t get ADCC 2024 slots from this event, as those are going to be awarded on the upcoming ADCC West Coast Trials. That didn’t stop these women from putting on a show though, with Amanda Leve, Morgan Black and Alex Enriquez all ending up with ADCC gold.
Teenage New Wave prodigy Helena Crevar had a stellar run with all submissions, up until she met Morgan Black in the finals. Black showed poise and a much better strategy to end up beating the youngster in a fun and tactical finals match.
Filipino Alex Enriquez of Atos also impressed by winning five matches at the newly created -55 kg division, including a finals victory over Vagner Rocha’s daughter Jasmine Rocha. Enriquez previously placed second on the 2021 East Coast Trials, when she had to compete at a higher weight division.
MMA vets lose out on Round of 16
A couple of well known MMA fighters also competed on the BJJ event, with Nick Newell and Katyln Chookagian both making it to Day 2, until they eventually got eliminated at the round of 16. UFC vet Chookagian won one match at +65 kg, while the one-handed Bellator and WSOF vet in Newell won four matches at -77 kg.
ADCC 2024 invites so far
After the EMEA Trials and East Coast Trials, a total of 10 invites to the ADCC 2024 world championships have now been awarded to the tournament winners. Trials season will continue in the coming months, and the current list of invites is below:
- -66 kg: Owen Jones, Dorian Olivarez,
- -77 kg: Jozef Chen, Elijah Dorsey
- -88 kg: Santeri Lilius, Jacob Couch
- -99 kg: Luke Griffith, Paul Ardila
- +99 kg: Heikki Jussila, Daniel Manasoiu
East Coast Trials full BJJ matches
Below are some of the full matches that have been released from the event.
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