ADCC East Coast Trials preview with Jay Regalbuto

ADCC judge and commentator Jay Regalbuto sat down with Grappling Insider to preview the upcoming ADCC East Coast Trials.

The 2023 ADCC East Coast Trials take place on October 14-15, and the event is shaping up to be one of the most talent-rich tournaments in recent memory, with at least one division already at capacity with 256 competitors.

Winners in each of the five men’s divisions will earn their spot at the 2024 ADCC World Championships, slated to go down at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas next August. Women competitors will qualify at the ADCC West Coast Trials.

Grappling Insider recently sat down with ADCC judge and commentator Jay Regalbuto to preview the upcoming Trials event. The coach to past Trials winners Nick Rodriguez and Amanda Leve, Regalbuto is intimately familiar with what it takes to win the grueling two-day tournament.

Check out the full division-by-division preview below.

Regalbuto says that a couple key skills competitors must possess are wrestling and a nuanced understanding of the unique ADCC ruleset:

“This tournament really shows you that if you understand strategy, if you understand strategy and you can wrestle, you’re gonna be aggressive, you’re gonna find your way to people’s backs in this ruleset.”

Another factor that Regalbuto says will be a differencemaker is activity. Those competitors who compete no more than a handful of times a year will find themselves at a distinct disadvantage against those who are frequently testing themselves, whether that be in high-level superfights, the IBJJF, or the ADCC Opens:

“When it comes to things like Trials, activity is a big thing. Like how active are you staying? Listen, you’re gonna have to win eight matches over the course of two days. That means you gotta win five matches on Sunday against a slew of talented people, and there are a ton of dark horses in these divisions. So I think the people that have been staying active, especially active in situations where they’re doing multiple matches in a day… This is an intense six minutes.”

How to watch: The 2023 ADCC East Coast Trials take place on October 14-15 and will air live on FloGrappling (subscription required).

Ben Coate

Ben has been involved with grappling, whether through wrestling or Brazilian jiu-jitsu, essentially his entire life. After wrestling throughout his childhood, Ben found Brazilian jiu-jitsu as a young adult and quickly fell in love. He has been training for over ten years and currently holds the rank of brown belt, and remains involved in both the MMA and BJJ scene. Ben has been writing about combat sports since 2017. He has interviewed and profiled some of MMA's biggest stars, including multiple UFC champions.

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