Video Study: James Gallagher’s Position to Submission

If you’re not a diehard MMA fan, you might have missed the highly touted prospect James Gallagher defeating Chinzo Machida last weekend during Bellator 180. At just 20-years old, Gallagher displayed solid jiu-jitsu in a combat situation against a dangerous adversary. He was able to take his opponent down, pass the guard, move into mount then to the back, where he eventually submitted his opponent with a rear naked choke. Here is some critical moments in the fight that’s worth a study to see if it could be helpful to your game.


At 6:52 of the video, Gallagher defends Machida’s kick by stepping back and brushing the kick aside with his lead hand. Seizing the opening, Gallagher dives in for a blast double leg. Gallagher’s forehead is up and in the Machida’s chest, fully committing to the takedown as he powers him over to one side.

7:01 – Gallagher attempts to pass to the left side into side control. Gallagher stands while stuffing Machida’s leg pass his hips then dropping his hip down towards Machida’s. However, Machida is able to a knee shield, slightly shrimp and push Gallagher’s hip back into his guard.

7:08 – Continuing to look to pass the guard, Gallagher brings his left hand underneath Machida’s left leg and cups the right heel. Gallagher is able to move the leg aside then attempts to drop his weight down on Machida but is blocked by Machida’s knee. Machida kicks up trying to push Gallagher off of him but Gallagher reacts by stuffing his knee pass his hips and moving into knee on belly. Reacting to the punches, Machida covers up which allows Gallagher to quickly take mount.

7:35 – Gallagher has taken Machida’s back but Machida is starting to scoot away from Gallagher’s hooks. Machida is able to clear one hook but Gallagher maintain’s his seatbelt grip and other hook until he’s able to re-establish a hook with the right foot then switches to a figure-four, nullifying Machida’s escape.

8:17 – Machida stops attacking Gallagher’s hands which leads to Gallagher locking a rear naked choke forcing Machida to tap.

Gallagher was able to establish dominant positions which led him to an even more dominant positions which eventually led to the fight-ending submission.

See something that you can apply to your game? Was there something else in the fight that jumped out to you? Leave a comment and let’s discuss.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s