First, I must congratulate our top 10 Fantasy Team Managers from PGF Season 4, Day 1:
As folks can see it’s close up at the top. More importantly, it’s a low-scoring affair. I didn’t think it would be possible, but there’s a way that new team managers could put together teams and conceivably take home the title this year. (Btw, thanks to Big Daddy for pointing out Matthew Boiles didn’t have his fantasy points for his win).
No, seriously it’s possible…and I don’t think that word means what you think it does.
We had some great action yesterday. I think we all had fun. In honor of what a great day it was, your magnanimous Lord of Fantasy will be upping your budget to $80. I’ve adjusted the prices of competitors to reflect their day 1 performances.
Don’t forget to tune in live today at noon central time and hop in the chat. I want to see some super chats supporting your favorite competitors and some bounties. No one has cashed in on my $60 for a wristlock yet, but I have hope.
REMEMBER: You must lock in your team before the competition starts EACH DAY. You must select your team each day – it will not pull over your first day’s team to the second day.
Without further ado, here’s the fantasy analysis. Competitors can either prove me wrong on the mats or get payback during the nightly open mats.
SUPER PREMIUMS (you’re going to offset the expense by dropping a roster spot)
Dane Leak (black) – Team Supernatural Survival Gear (Caleb McAllister) – $25 Leak assumed the anchor position for Team Supernatural Survival Gear and made the most of it. He secured two kills and a break. You never want to count Dane Leak out. His true mastery of fundamental jiu jitsu can take him from being punished on bottom to locking in a bolt-cutter choke (wrong-side triangle) in seconds. As the current leader for PGF Season 4 and on a team where has clearly shown a penchant for research and scouting opponents, the Great Dane has to be a super-premium.
Nekiaya Jackson (brown belt) – Team Ironclad (Matt Elkins) – $25; faces; Brianna Parocha (blue) – [KILL]; Claire Mitchell (purple) – [KILL], Joanie Chamberland (black belt) [KILL], Emily “Cyanide” Hauser (blue belt) [KILL] – 24 points. Nekiaya is money in the bank. I had a feeling Tara Larosa’s toughness could withstand Nekiaya’s attack for six minutes, but let’s face it, Tara is all-world tough. Even with a solid lock on the top spot for the ladies, I know Nekiaya’s competitive nature will have her shooting for all kills. Before yesterday, I would’ve put the Nekiaya v Joannie matchup as a push/draw, but Joannie got a serious pop from Tara and she’s likely compromised. With Joannie’s injury, Nekiaya will likely get the kill.
David Garcia (brown) – Team Ironclad (Matt Elkins) – $25; Garcia did NOT disappoint! He has a methodical, heavy pressure game leading to kills and he secured two of them on the first day. In my last post, I noted his style would get kills but would not last too long in the quintet style and the prognosticator of prognosticators was proven right when Coach Elkins had to pull Garcia out after his second opponent.
Manning Leverett (brown belt) – Team Such N Such (Sean Applegate) – $25; At some point, we’re all going to give the Manaconda the respect he deserves (yes, me included). I think it’s partly because Manning is such a nice, soft-spoken gentlemen. But, if he wanted to be arrogant and brash, well, he has the skills to back it up. Manning secured two kills and received a team point to be tied for second place. As Manning is one of the larger gentlemen in the league, he’s probably going to gain even more size advantage as the week continues. DUUUUUUVVVAAAALLL!!! (that was for Walo)
Reese Lafever (purple) – Team Such N Such (Sean Applegate) – $20; Coach Applegate decided to lead off his lineup with Lafever and for good reason. Lafever showed he really has leveled up since traveling down to Austin to train with New Wave Jiu Jitsu. He has shown us the ability to expertly threaten with leg locks then back takes and back to leg locks. Lafever racked up a kill and a break, then rounded out his 10 points earning that bonus team point. He’s tied for fourth, but I have to think he’s going to be climbing up the standings.
Joanie Chamberland (black belt) – Team Cantrell (Kemoy Anderson) – $20; faces Anna Cononge (brown) – [BREAK]; Tara Larosa (purple) [BREAK], Nekiaya Jackson (brown belt) [DRAW/LOSS], Kaida Davis (brown belt) [KILL] – 12 points. This analysis reminds me of trying to analyze Kevin Primeau from season 3 – how bad is her elbow injured? Joanie was one of if not THE frontrunner for this season, but she suffered a bad pop from a bent armbar from the scarf hold against Tara Larosa. In her last match of day 2, it looked like a flow roll with her real-life teammate Anna Cononge. I’m a huge fan of Joanie; I hope some ice, ibuprofen and maybe some Mr. Miyahi stuff from Coach Applegate gets her back to her prime form.
Evan Dewitt (black) – Team Ironclad (Matt Elkins) – $20; As I mentioned previously, Evan’s PGF Season 3 was cut very short due to a first night injury so he has a lot of motivation to show what he can do this season. He showed that motivation on day 1 securing the first KILL! Evan knows more than most he has to make the most of every opportunity on the mat and I think he’s going to keep that sense of urgency going forward. Expect more points from Evan Dewitt.
Maximus “Rock Troll” Jolly – (purple) – Team Such N Such (Sean Applegate) – $18; In my last post, I warned everyone “The Rock Troll is coming for everyone’s legs this season”…and I was right! He’s the only competitor to secure three submission in a row. The Rock Troll wants all the smoke from everyone. He’s flat out telling everyone he’s coming for their legs and he doesn’t care if they know. If I was a betting man, I’d say the Rock Troll’s lair will be littered with the legs of his competition after this season.
Anthony Molina Valdes (brown) – Team Cantrell (Kemoy Anderson) – $18; As Team Ironclad’s anchor, Anthony will get a lot of opportunities. He had Reese Lafever in some trouble a few times before succumbing to a break by Lafever. Anthony has a serious competitive streak. He came out angry the next time he was on the mats. Anthony only secured one break on the first day, but expect him to come out motivated and ready to hop on any submission available. I’m willing to bet he shows his full potential in the next two days.
Stephen Dana (purple) – Team Such N Such (Sean Applegate) – $18; Dana is a very game competitor but has shown inconsistencies in the past at qualifiers. He secured a break and got the team point on day 1. I have to think Coach Applegate will put Dana in good spots to get points in the next couple of blocks.
Kaida Davis (brown belt) – Team Ironclad (Matt Elkins) – $18; faces Joanie Chamberland (black belt) [DRAW], Emily “Cyanide” Hauser (blue belt) [BREAK]; Brianna Parocha (blue) – [BREAK]; Claire Mitchell (purple) – [DRAW] – 6 points. Kaida is a submission hunter and can be very dangerous. Kaida made a real statement securing the barratoplata against Tara Larosa. Kaida is a threat from every position and has a real chance to rack up some points on day 2.
Mario Gaor (brown) – Team Supernatural Survival Gear (Caleb McAllister – $18; This is Mario’s third season in the PGF. Last season he made it to the playoffs, winning a playoff match. Mario is one of the competitors this season was made for…an undersized, technical grappler. He got stalled out by TJ Steinebach in his one appearance on Day 1, but he got very close to sinking in his DOA ankle lock in the final seconds of the match. Mario’s been here before, I have to think he’ll bounce back today.
Samson Phommabout (brown belt) – Team Cantrell (Kemoy Anderson) – $18; Samson has a lot of competition experience in mma and jiu jitsu. He faced two of the toughest competitors on the first day with Reese Lafever and Dane Leak. Samson showed he was super tough. A lot of folks thought he was going to get the submission on Dane, but Leak swept and secured a submission in the last 30 seconds. Samson is no joke and he’s bound to start racking up points as he faces the rest of the field.
Anna Cononge (brown) – Team Supernatural Survival Gear (Caleb McAllister)– $18; faces Brianna Parocha (blue) – [BREAK]; Claire Mitchell (purple) – [BREAK], Joanie Chamberland (black belt) [DRAW], Emily “Cyanide” Hauser (blue belt) [DRAW]– 6 points. Anna has a chance to rack up points against the ladies on her real-life coach’s team – but they’ve shown the ability to stall out their opponents. Will she have the killer instinct to take out her real-life teammate that’s injured? I don’t think so. Anna has beautiful jiu jitsu, but her style might not be ideal for racking up points in the PGF.
Nathan “Irish Taco” Chambers (purple) – Team Supernatural Survival Gear (Caleb McAllister) – $16; THE IRISH TACO!!! He was involved in one of the most exciting matches in PGF history against Matthew Boiles and secured the submission. The Irish Taco does jiu jitsu and mma in Ireland and has the motor, stamina, and fire to make a real impression this season.
Matthew Boiles – (blue) – Team Cantrell (Kemoy Anderson) – $16; Everyone’s eyes were opened in day 1. Boiles is for real. He secured a break against an admittedly tired Great Dane Leak. He then had one of the best matches ever against the Irish Taco. Boiles still excudes his excitement and energy for which he’s known. Every time he steps on the mat, everyone knows excitement will ensue.
Jacob Arp – (purple) – Team Supernatural Survival Gear (Caleb McAllister) – $16; Arp kept himself in the running securing a break on day one. As we’ve said, he’s coming after everyone, putting on a pace. He can come straight after you or sit back for that straight ankle lock. He’ll get more points.
Juan Martinez V (brown) – Team Cantrell (Kemoy Anderson) – $16; the lead instructor at Childress BJJ in Pueblo, Colorado, Juan has the only competitor to earn the Elbow Genie bonus point for sinking in a submission in the first minute. He has a great style and I’m really looking to see what he does today.
Emily “Cyanide” Hauser (blue belt) – Team Cantrell (Kemoy Anderson) – $15; faces Nekiaya Jackson (brown belt) [DRAW], Kaida Davis (brown belt) [DRAW]; Anna Cononge (brown) – [DRAW]; Tara Larosa (purple) [LOSS]. Cyanide just got back from Spain representing the US in grappling. She’s very gritty and has apparently received some private lessons from Evan Stapler (gritty, grindy jiu jitsu). She’s fun to watch and she’ll be hard to put away for anyone. But she hasn’t shown the ability to put anyone away, either. She’s still new to the PGF so we’ll see if she makes adjustments and can get some submissions.
Tara Larosa – (purple) – Team Supernatural Survival Gear (Caleb McAllister) – $15; faces Brianna Parocha (blue) – [KILL]; Claire Mitchell (purple) – [KILL], Joanie Chamberland (black belt) [DRAW], Emily “Cyanide” Hauser (blue belt) [KILL]– 18 points. Day 2 is where Tara begins to really shine. On day 1, Tara made a statement getting a break against the #1 overall pick of the draft. Joanie is smart and likely won’t be caught the same way again, but she’s injured from that break. I think Tara knows she needs to put points on the board to be in contention for the title and she won’t hesitate today.
Wesley Carter (brown) – Team Ironclad (Matt Elkins) – $15; Carter’s a gritty guy who can wrestle, go for legs, really is well-rounded. His only point on day 1 was from a team point, but he is always a threat to snap on a submission.
Sam Acord (purple) – Team Such N Such (Sean Applegate) – $13; Sam got his chance for some payback against David Garcia on day 1. Sam was able to force the draw in their match at the Atlanta qualifier. This time Garcia wasn’t going to let it go the distance, securing a break. Still, Sam is a young competitor who could bounce back and put some points on the board.
TJ Steinebach – (brown) – Team Ironclad (Matt Elkins) – $13; TJ has a very solid base. Competitors he faced said how hard he is to off balance and that he’s just solid. While TJ was able to not get submitted in day 1, he also didn’t get any submissions. Only doing one qualifier, he is still new to the PGF ruleset and could let loose more as he gets used to the six-minute matches.
Jacob Mashburn – (blue) – Team Supernatural Survival Gear (Caleb McAllister) – $12; Mashburn has some flashes of great jiu jitsu yesterday but wasn’t able to put points on the board. Still, he’s playing for his real-life coach so you have to think Caleb will put Mashburn in good spots to get some subs today.
Noah Randolph – (purple) – Team Cantrell (Kemoy Anderson) – $12; At some point in time, Noah will break through his shell and come out firing both with his jiu jitsu and on the microphone. Noah has it in him, we all know it. But will he be able go Super Saiyan this season?
Nick Sahf (blue) – Team Ironclad (Matt Elkins) – $11; Sahf showed he’s right to be in the competition but didn’t come home with any points in day 1. He gave some people a very rough time and with the right matchups could put points on the board.
Eric Longar (black) – Team Such N Such (Sean Applegate) – $10; It’s a crime he slid to the last round again this season. But it’s Longar’s time to put everyone in their place by showing them what a gym-owning black belt can do. He could definitely make some noise this season. He didn’t get any submissions in day one but I wouldn’t be surprised if he changes that situation.
PENNY STOCKS (NOT LIKELY TO MAKE YOU MUCH, BUT IF YOU HAVE MONEY LEFT IN YOUR POCKET…) – a reminder to all competitors, don’t take my comments personally. If I was competing, I would be squarely at the bottom of this category.
Claire Mitchell – (purple) – Team Such N Such (Sean Applegate) – $9; faces Anna Cononge (brown) – [LOSS]; Tara Larosa (purple) [LOSS], Nekiaya Jackson (brown belt) [LOSS], Kaida Davis (brown belt) [LOSS] – 0 points. Claire really showed great defense, stalling out some of the top competition. This defensive showing may give her the confidence to open up and go sub hunting herself, but at the same time that may open her up to submissions.
Brianna Parocha – (blue) – Team Such N Such (Sean Applegate) – $9; faces Anna Cononge (brown) – [LOSS]; Tara Larosa (purple) [LOSS], Nekiaya Jackson (brown belt) [LOSS], Kaida Davis (brown belt) [LOSS] – 0 points. Brianna has shown she’s very hard to open up and submit when she’s mounted. She’s shown great defense period. But today, there’s folks that will have her name circled, knowing they have to bring their best game against her and get some points if they want to be in contention.
Alex Hall (purple) – Team Ironclad (Matt Elkins) – $9; This young man is hungry. Even the Rock Troll had to admit Alex Hall leveled up a lot since their last match at the Chattanooga Qualifier. Alex is a serious value pick here.
Billy Baxter (purple) – Team Supernatural Survival Gear (Caleb McAllister) – $9; Billy has a different style than most competitors in this field. Even for the 155 lb season, it looks like Baxter is a little undersized, allowing his competition to stall Baxter’s movement. We’ll see if Baxter is able to adjust.
Charles Muxo (blue) – Team Cantrell (Kemoy Anderson) – $9; Chaz Muxo has some underrated leg attacks. He’s very undersized for this season, but he’s going to surprise some folks. He was the recipient of multiple kills on day one and he can expect people to target him. How will he handle the target on his back? I hope he responds by counterattacking and taking home some legs.