EBI 21 results and highlights: Ryan Aitken claims absolute gold

View the full results and video highlights from EBI 21: The Absolutes, where 10th Planet standout Ryan Aitken took home gold.

The Eddie Bravo Invitational (EBI) returned to action on Sunday, June 2, with an absolute bracket featuring a number of elite no-gi competitors.

Ultimately, it was current Combat Jiu-Jitsu middleweight champion Ryan Aitken who took home gold, scoring two submission wins in regulation and two in overtime to become the EBI 21 absolute champion.

Aitken’s path to the final wasn’t easy.

In the opening round, he secured an armbar finish over perennial tough-out Adrian Nez in the closing seconds of regulation.

That victory set Aitken up for a quarterfinal matchup against Franco Pana — one of the bracket’s largest competitors. Aitken showcased a solid guard throughout the regulation period before scoring a face crank submission in the second round of overtime to advance to the semifinals where he would face Fedor Nikolov.

Against Nikolov, Aitken showed off his dangerous leg lock game, securing a match-ending straight ankle lock early in the regulation period.

That victory set him up for a clash with one of the bracket’s early favorites, “Big” Dan Manasoiu. Yet again, Aitken demonstrated a strong and efficient guard, as he spent the majority of the 10-minute regulation period defending passes from the New Wave giant.

In overtime, Aitken showed why he’s one of the best EBI overtime athletes in the sport. After scoring a lightning-fast escape in the opening round of overtime, he would go on to secure a rear-naked choke finish to claim the absolute title.

The tournament win marks arguably the most significant performance of Aitken’s career, and the 10th Planet Atlanta product has done plenty to position himself for an invite to either the ADCC World Championships or the Craig Jones Invitational later this year.

Check out the full event results below.

EBI 21 results

Opening round

  • Giancarlo Bodoni def. Austin Baker via submission (ankle lock)
  • Declan Moody def. Brandon George via submission in OT (rear-naked choke)
  • Ramiro Leon def. Abraham La Montagne via submission in OT (armbar)
  • Dan Manasoiu def. Jesseray Childeray via submission (heel hook)
  • Ryan Aitken def. Adrian Nez via submission (armbar)
  • Franco Pana def. Calon Sabino via submission in OT (armbar)
  • Fedor Nikolov def. Romualdo Lucas via submission in OT (armbar)
  • Amir Allam def. Josh Leduc via submission (gogoplata)

Quarterfinals

  • Giancarlo Bodoni def. Declan Moody via submission in OT (rear-naked choke)
  • Dan Manasoiu def. Ramiro Leon via submission (ankle lock)
  • Ryan Aitken def. Franco Pana via submission in OT (face crank)
  • Fedor Nikolov def. Amir Allam via submission in OT (armbar)

Semifinals

  • Dan Manasoiu def. Giancarlo Bodoni via submission (heel hook)
  • Ryan Aitken def. Fedor Nikolov via submission (ankle lock)

Final

  • Ryan Aitken def. Dan Manasoiu via submission in OT (rear-naked choke)

Superfights

  • Musab Raza def. Sean Magnus via submission in OT (rear-naked choke)
  • Sean McCleary def. Roberto Randall via submission (rear-naked choke)
  • Lauren Sears def. Ally Wolski via submission (kneebar)

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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