Although Lucas Lepri is more known as a gi competitor, his precise skills translate well into no-gi. Lucas’s back take against Lachlan Giles at ADCC 2019 is worth checking out — I will do a quick breakdown of this sequence.
Take a look at this GIF first.
Let me explain the context first. This clip starts at the moment when Lachlan managed to recover his guard from the north-south position.
Lucas immediately sets up his knee-cut pass by using his left hand to stuff Lachlan’s right leg and stepping over.
Lachlan doesn’t give up an underhook to Lucas easily. Lachlan posts with his right elbow and faces toward the mat. I don’t know exactly what’s happening with his left arm, but I assume he may be looking to get into the octopus guard kind of position. This positioning allows Lachlan to mitigate Lucas’s cross face, which Lachlan suffered before this sequence. If Lachlan didn’t have this angle, I assume Lucas would have cross-faced Lachlan and gone through Lachlan’s guard like before.
But Lachlan’s angle enables Lucas to get a seatbelt. As you can see later in the sequence, Lucas gets the gable grip instead of the standard wrist grip. His right palm is facing up, and his left palm is facing down.
Once Lucas secures the seatbelt & gable grip, he rolls forward and swings his legs. I assume Lachlan resisted here and didn’t follow Lucas. But now Lachlan is in the turtle position unwillingly, and his back is exposed.
So Lucas comes back up using the seatbelt, positions himself behind Lachlan, and takes Lachlan’s back. Lucas switches to the body triangle.
He changes his gable grip to the standard wrist grip only after scoring 3 points for the back take.
Lucas Lepri’s back take is super cool and probably something your opponent wouldn’t expect if you pulled it off correctly.
Lucas did a similar back take against Garry Tonon multiple times in their ADCC 2015 match, but Lucas used Kimura that time instead of the seatbelt & gable grip. This configuration might be easier to set up than the Kimura grip variation because a savvy opponent will probably try to prevent you from getting Kimura.
I think this works well for Lucas because he has immense cross-face pressure and overall guard passing pressure. Most people won’t be able to survive Lucas’s pressure if they try to play a regular half-guard game against him. Lachlan was probably trying his best to keep his guard by facing down and posting with his elbow, but that’s exactly what gave Lucas access to his back take move.
Another thing I want to mention is that Lucas’s back take reminds me of Leo Vieira’s cambalhota. Since Leo Vieira is no longer an active competitor, and you might know of him just as a co-founder of Checkmat, you might call cambalhota an old-school move.
Take a look at this video where Leo Vieira explains how his signature back take works.
Lucas Lepri’s back take uses similar movements as cambalhota, though the grip configurations are different.
If Lucas’s move or cambalhota seems to suit your style, try and see how they work for you.