Reinier De Ridder Eyes a Submission Victory Over His BJJ Star Opponent Tye Ruotolo at ONE Fight Night 10

Published 04/10/2023, 6:13 AM EDT

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The ONE Middleweight MMA world champion, Reinier De Ridder, didn’t have a favorable last outing. The Dutch-native succumbed to the vicious punches of his Russian opponent, Anatoly Malykhin, at ONE on Prime Video 5. However, the first blemish in the career of De Ridder didn’t bow him down. ‘The Dutch Knight’ had talked about his intention of returning to the circle with a bang.

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De Ridder’s comeback bout was also announced about a month back. It was no wonder that the former ONE champ-champ found a place in ONE’s first-ever event on US soil, the ONE Fight Night 10. However, it was also revealed that De Ridder would be competing in a submission grappling showdown instead of MMA. A lot of ONE Championship followers might already know about his touted opponent, Tye Ruotolo.

Reinier De Ridder talked about an advantage that Tye Ruotolo possessed over him

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‘The Dutch Knight’ was recently interviewed by ‘South China Morning Post’ where he touched upon various aspects of the bout against Ruotolo. De Ridder revealed that competing in various martial arts disciplines would actually work as a disadvantage for him. He also pointed out how the same would be advantageous for his opponent, Ruotolo.

The former ONE Light Heavyweight champ said, “He’s[Ruotolo] been fully focused on this through the years. I haven’t been able to focus on grappling because I always have to do my wrestling, my cage-work, my striking. In that regard, he has the advantage”.

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De Ridder also ignored his size advantage over Ruotolo, stating, “He’s most likely gaining some weight and I have to be 93kg so I can’t gain too much. I don’t think it will be too much [difference].” It was understandable that he did not underestimate his opponent. Neither did he expect the bout to be a cakewalk.

De Ridder’s opponent, Tye Ruotolo, was a phenomenon in the world of BJJ, and one-half of the coveted ‘Ruotolo Brothers’ of BJJ. The Brazilian possessed an unblemished 2-0 submission grappling record in ONE Championship post his joining last year. Ruotolo’s wide range of weapons, especially the D’Arce choke and the wrist lock are definitely something De Ridder will try to avoid.

Reinier De Ridder had trained with the best to face the best

De Ridder had been putting in the work prior to his showdown against one of the current BJJ stars, Tye Ruotolo. However, the Dutch knew that he had to train with the best to beat the best. De Ridder sought the help of the noted BJJ trainer John Danaher and also trained with his famed pupil, Gordon Ryan, to prepare for this showdown.

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The ONE Middleweight kingpin stated, “I’m pretty confident right now, Gordon and John have really helped me out technique-wise”.

De Ridder’s first bout against Tye Ruotolo’s coach, Andre Galvao, also boosted his confidence. Although the bout ended in a draw, De Ridder took that as a positive. He revealed, “The Galvao [bout], I took on three weeks’ notice, coming from an MMA fight [with Kiamrian Abbasov]. Now I’ve just been grappling for months. That gives me a lot of confidence.”

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The Dutch Knight also talked about how he could give tough competition to seasoned grapplers while he was focused on MMA. Which possibly meant that he could even defeat the best if he shifted his focus to just grappling. The ONE Middleweight king stated, “I can hang with the best with best in the world [in submission grappling] when I’m just focused on MMA. Maybe I can submit one of the best in the world when I’m just focused on grappling.”

Well, a lot might agree, and others also might detest this statement by De Ridder. But how do you think his showdown against Tye Ruotolo will unfold?

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Written by:

Souvik Roy

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Souvik Roy is an exceptional UFC writer with an impressive portfolio of over 500 articles at EssentiallySports. The young writer did not allow speech impairment to come in the way of his love for writing and covering fights. As a keen observer, Souvik's passion for MMA was sparked when he discovered the UFC after being introduced to WWE.
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Edited by:

Rohini Kottu

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