A young grappling phenom will be trying his hand (pun intended) at combat jiu-jitsu. Eddie Bravo, the founder and creator of combat jiu-jitsu, announced that 20-year old Roberto Jimenez will join Nathan Orchard, CJJ lightweight champion Tye Ruotolo, and CJJ welterweight champion Kody Steele at the Combat Jiu-Jitsu Worlds welterweight tournament on June 6.
For those unfamiliar with combat jiu-jitsu, it is essentially “jits with hits.” Grapplers are not permitted to strike on the feet, but once the match hits the ground, competitors can use open-hand strikes. Finishes typically come by way of submission, but TKO stoppages are available.
With the addition of Jimenez to a field that includes two CJJ champions, this will be a stacked event. Jimenez is one of grappling’s brightest new stars, and his all-offense, all-aggression approach should lend itself well to combat jiu-jitsu.
Ruotolo captured the lightweight belt in November 2020, defeating Orchard in the finals. Still just 17-years old, Ruotolo and his twin brother Kade are grappling prodigies representing Team Atos. Like Jimenez, Ruotolo’s hyper-aggressive style fits well with the fast-paced grappling of combat jiu-jitsu.
As the reigning CJJ welterweight champion, Kody Steele might be the odds-on favorite going into the event. Steele captured the belt in August 2019, also defeating Orchard in the finals. Since then, Steele has earned impressive jiu-jitsu wins over Edwin Najmi, Jonnatas Gracie, and other high-level competitors.
The Combat Jiu-Jitsu Worlds welterweight tournament will take place on June 6 and will air on UFC Fightpass.