The anticipation for ADCC 2022 is slowly building to a boiling point and that is thanks in part to some of the surprise invites given out to athletes, with the latest addition to the 66kg weightclass being Mikey Musumeci. The ADCC trials provide a fantastic preview in to the performances of some of the athletes who will be competing, but it’s the invites that have always generated the most intrigue as they act as wildcards in the tournament. The invites for this year have been announced much earlier than previous years and it’s allowed fans to see the divisions getting put together before their very eyes.
Many of the invites announced have been predicted by fans as they have been given to the medalists from 2019, or fan-favorites who regularly put on impressive ADCC performances. The first surprise invite was given to Xande Ribeiro, who had not competed in 2019 but is a two-time ADCC world champion thanks to his epic performances in 2007 and 2009. Since then, things have only gotten more interesting as the most recent invite to catch fans off-guard was Nicholas Meregali in the 99kg division, who stands in a similar place as Mikey Musumeci given that neither men have ever competed at either an ADCC trials or world championships event.
Although Musumeci has never competed under ADCC rules before, much like Meregali it’s hard to argue that he’s a deserving invite. Since developing his grappling game to include heelhooks, Musumeci has won the WNO Bantamweight Championship and then also defended it successfully shortly afterward. All of that is after the fact that Musumeci has practically owned the lightest gi weightclasses from 2017 onwards, winning four IBJJF world championships in the gi with two coming at 64kg and two coming at 57kg.
The news of Mikey Musumeci being given a surprise invite to the 66kg division of the 2022 ADCC World Championships was announced in a post to the promotion’s official Instagram account: