Nelson Necktie by Neil Melanson
Who is Neil Melanson? Neil could easily be considered one of the most dangerous men on the planet. Neil was the head coach of the infamous Blackzillians MMA Team and Randy Couture’s Xtreme Couture gym. He has coached some of the best UFC fighters to ever compete to the pinnacle of the sport including Chael Sonnen, Vitor Belfort, Randy Couture, Matt Mitrione and many more. His students have given high praise. Chael Sonnen said, “Neil would slap Rickson Gracie around like it was easy.” Jiu Jitsu black belt and former UFC Champion Vitor Belfort stated that “Neil could triangle anybody in any room.”
Neil boasts a unique education when it comes to grappling. He began his education at the Hayastan School where he learned techniques from Catch Wrestling, Judo and Sambo from world renowned coaches Gene Lebel and Gokor Chivichyan. His grappling style is a combination of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Judo, Catch Wresting and Sambo. He is the living embodiment of the Bruce Lee quote, “Absorb what is useful. Reject what is useless. Add what is essentially your own.”
Beyond his impressive education and grappling abilities, Neil is an extremely capable teacher. He takes a meticulous approach and breaks down the detail so that is can be easily understood by even the grappling novice.
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In this video Melanson explores the 3 Quarter Neck Tie. He also refers to the submission as a Nelson Necktie. Neil explains in some detail on the reason why he prefers this submission over its cousin, the Peruvian Neck Tie because it is significantly hard to escape. Melanson states there should be a consideration made for grips. The effect of any grip should be considered before the grip is chosen. For this submission, Neil prefers a 3 Finger grip. He is also okay with an S grip but considers the Gable grip a poor choice. The reason for this hierarchy is the goal is create pressure and a choke. Ideally the elbows should be able to pass each other. That is why the 3 finger grip is the best choice followed by the s grip. He starts off in a top side with his opponent in a turtle. Next, he applies the 3 finger grip on either side of his opponents head driving his elbows together. Note how he then shoots the top side knee onto his opponents head in the space beneath his arm. This detail is in stark contrast to some other submissions. He shifts his weight off his bottom side knee onto his foot. When this is done he swims the bottom side leg over his opponent. He furls the bottom side leg while extending the top side leg for a quick finish. If by some miracle the bottom player is able to remove the knee from his head he is still able to finish the submission. This is a beautiful sequence from the turtle and seems to mitigate some of the issues found with a traditional Peruvian Neck Tie.
Many consider Neil Melanson to be a mad scientist of grappling. This sequence is a fine testament to that. His approach is not based on a singular style but a hybrid of many approaches. He is obsessed with independent and free thinkers like Nicola Tesla and his style of grappling is brilliant testament to that. If you have ever seen Neil’s instructional videos than you certainly understand what we mean. If you have not had the privilege, click on the link below to learn the forgotten secrets of the Guillotine from the most deadly Catch Wrestler on earth, Neil Melanson.