Winning a world title in mixed martial arts is a rare, not to mention difficult, feat that catapults a fighter’s fame and legacy to new heights. However, having your name etched in a submission is a one-of-a-kind accolade on its own.
Jason Von Flue entered hardcore MMA fans’ consciousness after competing in the second season of The Ultimate Fighter, wherein he finished in the semi-finals, losing to eventual champion Joe Stevenson. Considered as an underdog during the competition, Von Flue, with grit and determination, still earned a UFC contract after the show’s filming.
In his first UFC bout after the show, Jason Von Flue went on to defeat season one competitor Alex Karalexis via technical submission, after he locked in a modified shoulder choke from side mount. From here, many people from MMA and BJJ circles christened what is now known in as the Von Flue choke.
Back then the unique and somewhat innovative move was foreign to the eyes of even the most experienced grapplers in the sport, as it does not really scream technique, but rather brute force. Still, a lot of MMA fighters, BJJ practitioners, and almost everyone in between, began incorporating and utilizing the technique, catching many opponents off guard in the process.
From the side mount, the idea of the Von Flue is to angle your opponent’s far arm shoulder to the ground as one side of the choke, while driving your shoulder into his or her carotid artery. The move entails a degree of timing, especially when going up against a more experienced adversary.
Probably another familiar way of applying the Von Flue choke is while defending the arm in guillotine. Common knowledge suggests that when escaping the guillotine, you should look to veer away from the same side as where your head is, as you do not want the choke to fall deeper.
Now in order to properly execute the Von Flue choke while defending the guillotine you need to reach your hand behind your opponent, all while circling around his or her body. Once you have achieved a stronger, more stable position, you then find the right angle on his or her neck and apply the necessary pressure to choke him or her out.
An important thing to remember when countering the guillotine with the Von Flue is to be in an arm in position. In the arm in guillotine, you have more leeway to thrust your shoulder in your opponent’s neck.
Currently, UFC Light Heavyweight fighter, Ovince Saint Preux gained notoriety and notability for finishing three of his opponents namely Nikita Krylov, Marcos Rogerio de Lima, and Yushin Okami via the Von Flue choke. There is even a clamor from some fans to change the technique’s name to “Von Preux.” All things considering, Jason Von Flue is still and will always be part of MMA and BJJ history. He may not have carried gold during his 10-year mixed martial arts career; there is still that remarkable accomplishment of – literally – etching his name as an innovator and a visionary of an effective grappling move.