This promotion presents submission only events with cash prizes for the winners
Competitive grappling continues to grow as a new component to the combat sports world. Promotions across the world are bringing together the top athletes to create the matches that hardcore fans want to see. Submission Series Pro is a brand that has thrown itself into that market and built a strong following in a short amount of time.
To learn about the start of Submission Series Pro, you’d have to go back to 2014 and travel to Nova Scotia, Canada. There, a number of high level Brazilian Jiu Jitsu practitioners could be found, but they were all lacking in one area: tough competition experience. It was under that guise that the idea for Submission Series Pro was created with the goal to bring talent from other areas in North America to face off against the home-grown competitors from Canada. That idea eventually blossomed into the format that is found today – 16 man tournaments with cash prizes for the winner.
“This model works for us,” said Submission Series Pro promoter, Derek Clarke. “It keeps cash flow coming in for the business and provides the same product that everyone wants.”
Since 2014, Submission Series Pro has used that format to put on some exceptional matches. Their events have featured some of the most well-known grappling competitors including Tom DeBlass, Joao Assis, Oliver Taza and others. Even UFC competitors Mitch Clarke, Jonathan Goulet and Chris Kelades have stepped out of the Octagon and onto the Submission Series Pro mats to get back to their grappling roots.
Submission Series Pro uses a standard set of submission only rules in which a winner is determined by either forcing the tap out or by referee’s decision. They’ve created a slight difference in criteria when competing in the gi versus without, but the expectation is still the same; hunt for the finish.
“These rules are extremely important, especially in NoGi,” Clarke said. “We always focus on sub only, except for our gi tournaments.”
As the competitive grappling world continues to grow and more promotions pop up every year; the leaders of Submission Series Pro believes it’s found a way to carve out a space amongst the group.
“So many great people are getting involved and the professional aspect of it is taking off,” Clarke said. “I see so many professional events just like our going on across the world, it’s cool to see. The one thing people need to start doing is paying to see the fights; if we want them to grow then pay the 10 bucks to watch!”
That segues into an important conversation in competitive grappling and that is fighter pay. As more top-notch athletes step into professional competition, their expectations of being treated like professional athletes have grown as well. Fighters are rightfully looking for ways to get paid for their talents, and Submission Series Pro is an organization that believes in treating them in such a way.
“We have always paid the athletes,” Clarke said. “Back in 2015 we paid out close to $25,000 in salary which really hurt our promotion. We shifted our business to the tournament format with the plan to pay out $2,000 to $5,000 to one or multiple athletes. We also help with hotel accommodations, $250 towards flight and hire professional drivers while the fighters are here. We try to exceed the expectation and make this the most professional brand they compete with.”
Submission Series Pro stands as another organization that’s continuing the push for the growth of competitive grappling. Located north of the border, this team has created a reason for some of the best in the sport to travel to Canada to face some of the stiffest competition available.
Athletes looking to compete for Submission Series Pro can contact the group via the official Facebook page. All events are presented on Internet PPV.