Who Is The Australian Badass I Keep Seeing, Craig Jones?

59d3f5086aecc.jpeg

Sometimes when top competitors don’t live in the big jiu-jitsu areas such as Rio, Southern California, or New York, they don’t get easy access to the spotlight. But if you submit potentially the best competitor of the time, on the biggest stage of the year, you’re propelled to the limelight almost instantly. 

Enter Craig Jones.

Jones, who seemingly rocketed to the forefront of the jiu-jitsu community this fall, trains out of Absolute MMA in Melbourne, Australia, and received his black belt not even a full year ago from the hands of Lachlan Giles. Jones competes both with and without the gi but is more accomplished in no-gi competition. In 2015, he won the IBJJF No-Gi World Championship as a purple belt and was promoted to black belt in December 2016 after only one year as a brown. 

The submission-only style of competition seems to suit Jones’ jiu-jitsu best, as he possesses a high understanding of the leg-attack game. In fact, seven of his 11 victories this year have come by way of heel hook. Known to pull guard rather than elect for top position, this strategy has allowed him to climb deep into several recent no-gi tournaments, including EBI and the prestigious ADCC Championship.

Photo by Blanca Marisa Garcia

The 26-year-old has earned submission victories over Leandro Lo, Murilo Santana, Nathan Orchard, Darrah Oconaill, and Chael Sonnen, and the future looks bright for Jones as the pro event invites keep coming.

Jones has two sub victories in the Submission Underground promotion since May, one at SUG 4 over Micah Brakefield and another at SUG 6 against Ben Egli. He just recently competed in EBI 14 and made it to the finals against the red-hot Gordon Ryan, nearly tapping the ADCC Champ with a vicious armbar in overtime. 

Photo by Blanca Marisa Garcia

Jones is once again stepping into the spotlight, this time at one of the most anticipated events of the year, the KASAI Pro in New York City this Saturday. 

He will face the brutally resilient veteran Murilo Santana in a rematch of their recent showing at ADCC in September. After Jones shocked the world by tapping Leandro Lo with an RNC, he followed up with an impressive flying triangle to submit the Unity JJ coach Santana before being shut down on points by Keenan Cornelius in the semifinals.

Watch KASAI Pro live or on demand only on FloGrappling

Santana will certainly be prepared this time for any flying attacks and has a lot on the line as he competes in his current hometown — not only alongside his fellow training partners including Mansher Khera and Junny Osascio but also in front of his students who will surely be in attendance for the Brooklyn-based event.

Jones and Santana will face off in a 10-minute sub-only no-gi bout, which will go into a six-minute overtime if no finish is had within regulation. The overtime period is fought under the IBJJF scoring system; however, advantages are not scored. All ADCC submissions are legal which plays nicely into the leg-attack focus of Jones, but Santana is no stranger to that approach, as he’s competed in three ADCC championships thus far. 

Tune in here on Saturday at 6 PM EST to see if Santana can put a stop to the barreling hype train out of Australia or if Jones has the recipe to double up against the very accomplished Brazilian veteran.

Johnny Tama And Oliver Taza Will Square Off At Who's Number One On March 26

Taza Tama announcement WNO

Johnny Tama and Oliver Taza will join the Who’s Number One card on March 26 in a prelim match to be streamed live for free on FloGrappling’s Facebook and YouTube channels.

'I Was Wrong': Regretful Andre Galvao Apologizes To Jiu-Jitsu Community

Andre Galvao by Bane Visnjic 3.jpg

Andre Galvao made his first statement since his incident with Gordon Ryan at WNO last Friday. Speaking in an Instagram live stream, Galvao assumed responsibility for the altercation and apologized to the jiu-jitsu community. 

How to Watch: Fight to Win 166

riba tackett.JPG

Here's how to watch the Fight to Win 166 on FloGrappling.

Kade Ruotolo & Ethan Crelinsten To Run It Back At WNO On March 26

ethan kade wNO

Who's Number One (WNO) returns March 26th for another stacked event, with WNO: Gordon Ryan vs Vagner Rocha! The pound-for-pound King is back for his fourth match at WNO where he'll be taking on the top middleweight grappler in the world in Vagner Rocha.

Maggie Grindatti To Face Rafaela Guedes At Who's Number One On March 26

WNO-MainCard-1920x1080-Matchup.png

Two of the best women in the 145 lb division will face off on the main card at Who’s Number One: Gordon Ryan vs Vagner Rocha on March 26. 

Vagner Rocha's Base Is Nearly Unsweepable | Stats Report

null

Create a free account to unlock this video!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

Vagner Rocha has a reputation.

Mikey Musumeci Set To Make WNO Debut Against Marcelo Cohen March 26

Mikey Marcelo WNO

Who's Number One (WNO) returns March 26th for another stacked event with WNO: Gordon Ryan vs Vagner Rocha! The pound-for-pound King is back for his fourth match at WNO where he'll be taking on the top middleweight grappler in the world in Vagner Rocha.

Buchecha Confirms MMA Debut, Faces Undefeated KO Artist

null

Create a free account to unlock this video!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

Buchecha's long-awaited MMA debut has a date. The ADCC and IBJJF World champion will enter the ring with ONE Championship in Singapore on April 14. 

Nick Rodriguez And Yuri Simões To Meet At WNO: Gordon Ryan vs Vagner Rocha

WNO Nicky Rod Yuri Simoes Matchups

Who’s Number One returns on March 26 for WNO: Gordon Ryan vs Vanger Rocha. Both athletes in the main event are ADCC medalists, and they’ll be joined on the card by two more member of that exclusive club. In the co-main event, two-time ADCC gold medalist Yuri Simões will take on the Danaher Death Squad’s Nick Rodriguez.

How to Watch: FloGrappling WNO: Gordon Ryan vs Vagner Rocha

Grappling-Logo-Overlay

Here's how to watch the FloGrappling WNO: Gordon Ryan vs Vagner Rocha on FloGrappling.