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Who Will Take Gordon Ryan's Place as Number One?

May 24, 2021

There are a number of leading candidates. Kaynan, Cyborg, Victor Hugo, maybe even Craig Jones. All of these men have the ability to dominate in Gordon‘s absence but suddenly everything looks a lot more competitive, and there will be a brief and furious race as competitors vie for the top spot in the ranking. Kaynan is probably the safest bet to rise to the top, although he’s stumbled at times and has suffered notable losses (consider the times he tapped out to Cyborg or Lachlan Giles’ leg locks).

If Kaynan does emerge as the number one he won’t suffer the same problem Gordon did. Whereas there were few challengers willing to face Gordon, there is less danger to one’s health or reputation in taking a match against Kaynan.

Victor Hugo is among the front of the pack when it comes to claiming the number one spot although Kaynan holds a recent win over him. Hugo has the size and skills to beat any heavyweight in the world, but he has less experience no-gi than ADCC champ Duarte.

Cyborg’s grappling career enjoyed a resurgence in 2020 but his attention may have shifted to his many business ventures. He had signed to face Gordon in July on our Road to ADCC event, but at this point few matches hold interest for the veteran grappler who has held nearly every major title that exists in the sport.

Craig Jones’ deadly submission skills could see him take Gordon’s spot as the Danaher Death Squad’s premier heavyweight submission artist, but he needs to get through Luiz Panza first. Jones has always been more human than Gordon, and his losses to Matheus Diniz, Mason Fowler and Kaynan Duarte place him lower down the ladder on the P4P list.