Mitchell Hooper is the 2023 World’s Strongest Man and he recently decided to get some grappling sparring in with both Rose Namajunas and Pat Barry. While people will often describe Jiu-Jitsu as one of the few sports where the smaller person can beat the bigger person if they’ve got enough of a technical advantage, there are limits to everything of course. Anyone who’s capable of competing in major strongman events is going to be a handful for even the most skilled grapplers on the planet, never mind someone like Hooper who’s been able to rise to the top of that sport.
Hooper stands at 6ft 2 and weighs in at around 320lbs, so he’s going to have the size and strength advantage against even the biggest of heavyweight MMA fighters. While Barry was a decent UFC heavyweight in his prime, he was also never really any more than 240lbs and would be significantly undersized against Hooper. That disadvantage only gets more extreme when he’s compared with former UFC strawweight world champion Rose Namajunas. With Namajunas competing at 115lbs, Hooper is going to have around 200lbs and a whopping 10 inches of height on her.
Of course, both Pat Barry and Rose Namajunas have a significant grappling skill advantage over the reigning World’s Strongest Man. It’s a still gigantic mountain to overcome though and it’s not unheard of for the size to be too much to overcome for a BJJ black belt. In fact, even incredible grapplers have been known to struggle when an opponent has a gigantic physical advantage like that. Gunnar Nelson famously injured his rib sparring with Hafthor Bjornsson, even though he did submit him in the end. While Namajunas is far from the welterweight limit, this isn’t the first time that a smaller MMA veteran has taken on an elite strongman competitor either. Dustin Poirier previously rolled with Brian Shaw and he was able to overcome the significant size difference then.
The 2023 World’s Strongest Man Mitchell Hooper uploaded the footage of him grappling with both Rose Namajunas and Pat Barry to his official YouTube account: