Two of the brightest stars in teenage BJJ right now, Nicky Ryan and Kade Ruotolo, met each other in the Quarter-Finals of the ADCC North American Trials last year and proved that the future of BJJ is in safe hands right now.
Nicky Ryan has shot to the forefront of BJJ over the last few years and not just because of his famous older brother Gordon staking claim to the title of the greatest No Gi Grappler of all time. He’s been building a reputation all of his own as one of the brightest young stars to come out of Renzo Gracie New York under John Danaher and really fought his way into the spotlight way back at Polaris 10 by beating UFC Hall Of Famer Uriah Faber in a tough matchup. Shortly after this, Nicky Ryan fought his way to the very top of the ADCC North American Trials by beating several elite grapplers, including the aforementioned match with Kade Ruotolo above.
This victory is what gave Ryan the opportunity to catapult himself to the next level of grappling fame at ADCC 2019 and although he was unable to earn a medal, he acquitted himself extraordinarily well in a losing effort against the legendary Paulo Miyao. While Kade Ruotolo was unable to make it to ADCC 2019, his twin brother Tye received an invite to the same bracket as Ryan, although the two never met. All three of the young grapplers have since had reason to celebrate as Nicky Ryan was promoted to brown belt by John Danaher shortly after his ADCC 2019 performance and both Tye and Kade Ruotolo received their purple belts from Andre Galvao over the Christmas period.