The UFC has seen dozens of fighters finish the fight via Heelhook and above is a collection of every single time a UFC fighter has tapped as a result.
Interestingly, much like the previous compilation of UFC Kneebar finishes, this video starts with one of the Shamrock brothers as well. It shows that leglocks have always had a place in MMA as Ken Shamrock scored the first victory by Heelhook all the way back at UFC 1 in 1993 over Patrick Smith. It’s genuinely stunning to see the development in the modern leglock game as the control he had over Smith wouldn’t fly in today’s UFC.
Despite the early presence of the Heelhook, finishes by this submission were few and far between up until 2007. Coincidentally, this also signaled the arrival of one of the greatest proponents of leglocks in MMA, Rousimar Palhares. A controversial figure, and rightly so, Palhares’ leglock ability cannot ever be in doubt as he features in this video on four separate occasions. He managed to secure victory via Heelhook against Lucio Linhares, Tomasz Drwal, Mike Massenzio and Mike Pierce all within a period of four years. This was of course, before he was released from the UFC for not letting go of a submission after the tap in multiple fights.
We then get to see the best Heelhook set up in MMA history and solid contender for submission of the decade. Ryan Hall set up the sequence with a leg kick and quickly rolled into 50/50 before sinking in the Heelhook on one of the best grapplers in MMA history, BJ Penn.
For those of you who want to learn how to finish the fight with a Heelhook from a UFC veteran, click here to let Dean Lister show you.
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