One of ONE Championship‘s best competitors, Reinier de Ridder, has just announced his intention to compete in major BJJ tournaments once he eventually decides to retire from professional MMA competition. Although that’s exciting news for any fans of professional grappling, it’s likely going to be a pretty long way away right now. De Ridder is the current ONE middleweight world champion and was the promotion’s light-heavyweight world champion too until he suffered the first loss of his professional career against Anatoly Malykhin.
De Ridder is known for his fantastic submission skills in MMA, as he’s managed to submit 11 of the 17 opponents he has faced so far in his career. This is thanks to the fact that de Ridder actually started out as a grappler before he ever tried his hand at MMA, and has even competed at the IBJJF European Championship at the coloured belt levels on several occasions. Even though he’s been focusing almost exclusively on MMA since he made his ONE Championship debut at the beginning of 2019, he has managed to get some submission grappling competition experience in.
Reinier de Ridder faced BJJ legend Andre Galvao at ONE X in one of the first submission grappling matches that ONE Championship staged and actually fought him to a draw. De Ridder looked impressive throughout it and was clearly more than capable of holding his own against elite competitors. He’s already booked to compete in his next submission grappling match too, and this time he’ll actually be facing one of Galvao’s top students. Tye Ruotolo will his opponent at ONE Fight Night 10 on May 5th, 2023 and this match will give de Ridder a huge opportunity to test himself against one of the top current competitors.
Reinier de Ridder revealed that he was going to compete in high level BJJ tournaments after he retires from professional MMA competition in a post to his official Instagram account: