With less than a month to go before Training Year 8 begins in August, I'm settling in on guard work, specifically closed guard work, as my main area of improvement.
What I want to do is focus on is attacking the arms, either through the King Crimson series (kimura, crossover sweep, omoplata, guillotine, kimura2back) when the elbow is wide, or through the Mendes Brothers series introduced here when the elbow is tight.
The Mendes Brothers attack consists largely of the triangle and the armdrag. There may also be a wristlock in there. What I'm looking to do is to add to these attacks the baratoplata from Professor Rafael Freitas of GB New Mexico, as shown by Profs. Rodrigo and Carlos here.
The third option in attacking the arms will be the Rap Star guard (arm wrap choke, armbar, omoplata, triangle, and sweeps). I've typically not been taking a sharp enough angle when attacking with Rap Star, and ultimately have had difficulty controlling the arm and getting enough space to properly use my inside leg. So I don't want to give up on Rap Star as an "arm-oriented" attack strategy from the guard. Ideally, all three options will flow into each other and make it more risky for those who try to kill space from the top to do so.
There are some finish details about the baratoplata that I need to work out. But I think this "barataguard" is a good project to develop my closed guard over the coming 12 month training year.
From the half guard I'll keep working on the "long range" game with the Shaolin sweeps with the take-the-back variation, as well as the Foster and Faria sweeps (more about all of this, including video, here).
From the open guard, I'll continue with the Leandro Lo sweep, plus the DLR sweep/backtake combo. I'll have a post on my submission goals for TY 8 later this week, a (hopefully) high probability submission strategy that could also be referred to as "King Crimson".
Very much inspired by some great performances from my teammates this weekend at The Revolution. Looking forward to getting back on the mat on Monday.