The fan favorites were Marcelo Garcia and Kyra Gracie, both winners of their divisions two years ago. When these two took the mats literally half the audience and floor staff migrated to their mats. Marcelo Garcia had eight matches winning the 66-76 kg division and then going all the way to the finals of the absolute division where he lost in the finals to Robert Drysdale who took 3rd in the 88-98 kg division. Kyra Gracie won the Women’s 56-59 kg division which is roughly where the women’s MMA fighters compete. Kyra went on to partake in the women’s absolute division unlike two years ago however she injured herself in the first round against eventual winner Hanette Staack.
Absolute division winner Robert Drysdale now faces the year’s Superfight winner Roger Gracie in ’09. Gracie earned his spot as challenger for this year’s Superfight by winning the absolute division in ’05 but his opponent was supposed to be defending Superfight Champion Dean Lister. Lister was just one of the competitors injured to the point they could not compete including defending Over 99 kg Champion Jeff Monson and Women’s 132-147 defending Champion Juliana Borger. 88kg division Champion Jacare did not compete due to a MMA contract. Even without these returning champions the show by all accounts was one of the best shows so far.
Photos of the absolute divisions are posted at http://malarky.udel.edu/~keith/2007/ADCC/ADCC07abs.htm
Most of the seats may have been empty at least partially due to the webcast and partially to location but the show itself ran smoothly with the best grapplers in the world competing on four mats at a time. More on the distribution and weight divisions in the days to come.