Photo: Lucas Noonan/BELLATOR MMA

The “Lucanator” from Bellator 285

Submission of the year candidate for sure.

Bellator 285 was a fantastic event for the promotion’s return to Dublin. Fans in the US got treated to some early prelims that for anyone that missed them, they might want to go back and see because there is a submission of the year candidate in the very first bout.

If you missed the submission many are calling a “submission of the year” candidate, including Bellator MMA President Scott Coker, you’re going to want to catch this fight.

Luca Poclit submitted Dante Schiro with a modified head and arm choke he calls “The Lucanator” according to his coach. Schiro to his credit seemed to believe he was not in danger and continued to try and fight out of the choke. As with most clean blood chokes the person being choked might not know how tight it is until they go out as Schiro did.

A blood choke like the one Poclit pulled off is when pressure is applied to both carotid arteries in the neck to cause someone to go unconscious. When looking at the regular head and arm choke, the pressure comes from pushing the proponent’s shoulder against their own neck to cut off one artery, while using their choking arm to cut off the other side. It’s a choke that’s been in MMA for a while and fans usually see it applied from mount. 

Carotid citation: External carotid artery. (2022, May 24). In Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/External_carotid_artery

The D’Arce and anaconda choke essentially do the same thing in principle, it’s just the position of where the choking hands lock that dictates what folks will call the choke. They’re all modified head and arm chokes at the end of the day. The thing that makes submission grappling martial arts unique from other arts is that they are always evolving and people are finding new ways to make a head and arm choke happen. 

Look at the “buggy choke” that everyone seems to think they see or go for these days in modern MMA and grappling. It’s just a creative way to compress someone’s head and arm together with their own body to cause unconsciousness and that’s what Poclit did to Schiro. It could technically be called an “inverted buggy choke” since Poclit locked it rolling to his knees off of a scramble. Look at his handiwork here:

Like the popular “buggy choke”, Poclit grabs his leg but wraps it around his thigh versus going behind the knee. It actually makes more sense and is probably more high percentage because the position has his belly down, and the arm does not have to be as deep behind the knee as it needs to be with the “buggy choke.” You can see, at the 20:21 mark of the match Poclit rolls Schiro over into the Kesa gatame/scarf hold position to lock his hand to his thigh and start applying pressure. Schiro is pretty much already unconscious when Poclit makes it tighter and posts his free hand on Schiro’s leg to pop his own head out and make the squeeze tighter before he lets go to win the fight.

Check out this fight and see the full Bellator 285 results right here.

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