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PGF S5, Day 2 Fantasy Analysis

Updated: Nov 1, 2023

There's a concept called Regression to the Mean. Basically, those that overperform or underperform on one day are likely to reverse course and return to their baseline as time continues.

Some of the most highly touted picks like Elijah, Matt Elkins, and Handsome Kevin, put few if any points on the board on Day 1. While many of the tops picks will be facing each other once again on Day 2, they should have more opportunities for points. On the other hand, we had standouts Landon Tourville and the Rock Troll Maximus Jolly outperform many folks’ expectations (I had your back Maximus). Do they regress to the mean or do they keep disproving their detractors?

As the PGF Seasons have continued, making fantasy picks have has become more and more difficult. Managers have to analyze every matchup and know many of them could go either way or end up in draws. As competitor Nick Craton pointed out in the official PGF Season 5 Whatsapp Chat, this blog was wildly wrong on day 1. But everyone is learning more about this season’s competitors as the days go on. Managers who can adjust their assumptions correctly and quickly will have the best shot at the money and gear offered up by Good Luck!

Elijah Carlton (Team Epic Roll) – Black Belt, 10th Planet Atlanta$23 After doubling his career draws in one night, Elijah Carlton faces Matt Elkins, Josh Gibbs, and Luke Church. He faces Matt Elkins first. Against Matt Elkins, he has a patented Elijah Triangle in PGF Season Regular 1 and a heel hook in that postseason. In Season 2, Elijah got Matt with a RNC in regular season. Coming into this match, Elijah has 4 points and Matt has 0 points. Would’ve never guess it.Next he faces Josh Gibbs. In season 3, Josh held out for a long time, forcing Elijah to settle for a break, but he was threatened by a choke for long time. Finally he faces Luke Church. Luke has shown some unforseen skill, but Elijah should be able to get the kill. - 15 points

The Rock Troll Maximus Prime Jolly (Team Epic Roll) – Purple Belt, Upper Cumberland MMA/10th Planet Cookeville - $21. The ever-exciting Rock Troll faces Young Matthew Dewees, Paul Bahri, and Travis Thomas. Young Matthew impressed with his resilience and skill on Day 1. While Dewees skillfully navigates his opponents’ leg attacks on Day 1, he hasn’t faced the Rock Troll’s speed and intensity. Maximus will likely get a break here. Then, he faces the other Duval competitor in Paul Bahri. Paul has a great athletic ability, but there’s a good chance Maximus will find one of those long limbs and take it home. Travis Thomas will be a real challenge. He’s shown himself as one of the most athletic PGF members, but also has greatly leveled up his leg and armbar game. Don’t count on points in that match. – 6 points.

Fedor Nikolov (Team Toe Hold Red) – Brown Belt, 10th Planet HQ (formerly 10th Planet St. Petersburg) - $21. The steal of the PGF draft faces Carson Thigpen, Sam Schwartzapfel, and Matthew Dewees. He should be able to get submissions against Thigpen and Dewees, but Sam’s a tougher call. Sam and Fedor were teammates at 10PHQ. At the LA qualifier, Fedor and Sam split matches. Sam got the first win via decision. Then Fedor got a lightning quick leg lock in the second. In the final match, it was against a decision, going to Fedor. A draw is very likely. – 9 points.

Matt Elkins (Team Toe Hold Blue)– Black Belt, 10th Planet Birmingham - $20. He faces Elijah Carlton, Kemoy Anderson, and Handsome Kevin Sherrill. This might be the toughest lineup anyone faces in the PGF. But if he wants to make the finale and make his claim for the PGF title, he’s going to have to put some points on the board. Against Elijah Carlton, he’s 0-3. Elkins got Kemoy with a guillotine in the PGF Season 2 regular season. Handsome Kevin and Elkins haven’t faced each other, but it should be great. Two former college wrestlers with great jiu jitsu skills. It’ll be interesting to see who can implement their game. – 9 points.

Nick Craton (Team Epic Roll) – Brown Belt at Adamas Jiu Jitsu, formerly of 10th Planet St. Paul - $19. He faces Buddha McClure, Handsome Kevin Sherrill, and Kemoy Anderson. He faces Buddha McClure, Handsome Kevin Sherrill, and Kemoy Anderson. Buddha is susceptible to leg locks so Nick should at least get a break. Craton is 2-0 against Kevin Sherrill, securing an Anaconda choke in their last match a few months ago. Kemoy will be hard to submit. He’s very cautious and deliberate- Craton might get another draw here. - 6 points.

Kemoy Anderson (Team Level) – Brown Belt, 10th Planet Austin (formerly 10th Planet El Paso) - $18. Kemoy faces Josh Gibbs, Matt Elkins, and Nick Craton. In their last matchup in Season 2, Kemoy got a triangle from bottom against Gibbs. He will likely get another submission in their match. Kemoy was guillotined by Matt Elkins in their season 2 match - so Kemoy may be very cautious leading to a draw. Again, Kemoy may force a draw against Craton due to respecting his leg locks. – 6 points.

MANTIS Travis Thomas (Team Level) – Purple Belt, 10th Planet Decatur - $18. He faces Handsome Kevin Sherrill, Buddha Mcclure, and Maximus Jolly. Even with what he’s shown, I’m anticipating no points from his matches with Handsome Kevin and Maximus, but a break against Buddha. – 3 points.

Anakin McMahan (Team Level) – Brown Belt, SubHounds - $17. He faces Paul Bahri, Matthew Dewees, and Sam Schwartzapfel. Bahri and Dewees from 10th Planet Jacksonville (DUVAL!) have faced many great leg lockers, but Anakin has to think he has a good shot of submitting them. Sam Schwartzapfel will be tough, but Fedor was able to get a quick leglock against him. If Sam is smart, he went back and watched the LA qualifier to see how Fedor setup that submission. – 6 points.

Handsome Kevin Sherrill (Team Toe Hold Red) – Brown Belt, LHM/American Top Team Atlanta - $17. He faces Travis Thomas, Nick Craton, and Matt Elkins. Today, he faces Travis Thomas, Nick Craton, and Matt Elkins. Whoever made the matches for Handsome Kevin must be jealous of his looks, because they didn’t do him any favors. Before the season started, I would’ve had Kevin getting a Kill against Travis. He still may, but I’m less confident of it. Nick Craton owns a 2-0 record against Handsome Kevin including an anaconda a few months ago. Handsome Kevin likely won’t score a submission. Likewise, I can’t pick a winner in the Matt Elkins match. – 6 points.

Cameron Hurd (Team Epic Roll) – Purple Belt, Silver Back NOVA - $17. He faces Moose Fritz, Landon Tourville, and Carson Thigpen. He faces Moose Fritz, Landon Tourville, and Carson Thigpen Sawyer Griffin. Hurd will have problems with the unorthodox competitors Moose and Landon. Griffin has showed he’s not afraid to wrestle with D1 wrestlers (Handsome Kevin in Wetumpka qualifier) and Griffin has sneaky back takes. Even if Cam can dominate exchanges, can he finish his submissions? - 0 pints

Sam Schwartzapfel (Team Epic Roll) – Purple Belt, 10th Planet HQ and 10th Planet NYC - $17. He faces Jacob Lamar, Fedor Nikolov, and Anakin McMahan.

Jacob Lamar (Team Toe Hold Blue) – Black Belt, Cobra Brazilian Jiu Jitsu - $16. He faces Sam Schwartz, Carson Thigpen, and Landon Tourville. He faces Sam Schwartz, Sawyer Griffin, and Landon Tourville. All three of these competitors are tough and he’ll have to fight to get a submission against any one of them.

Landon Tourville (Team Toe Hold Red) – Blue Belt, Fathom BJJ - $12. Luke Church, Cam Hurd, and Jacob Lamar. He faces Luke Church, Cam Hurd, and Jacob Lamar. Church and Lamar are possible submissions for Landon. Hurd will be hard, but Tourville has proven his detractors wrong before. – 6 points.

Luke Church Claunch (Team Level) – Purple Belt at 10th Planet Decatur - $15. He faces Landon Tourville, Cam Hurd, and Elijah Carlton. Church has exceeded expectations so far, but the prospect of putting points on the board against these opponents isn’t looking good. – 0 points.

Cody “MOOSE” Fritz (Team Toe Hold Blue) – Purple Belt, 10th Planet Santa Barbara - $14. He faces Cam Hurd, Luke Church, and Josh Gibbs. So now he’s facing a wrestler, a replacement player, and a former replacement player. He has a much better shot at getting subs today. – 6 points.

Tony “Buddha” McClure (Team Toe Hold Blue) – Blue Belt, Integrity BJJ and Fitness - $14. He faces Nick Craton, Travis Thomas, and Paul Bahri. He faces Nick Craton, Travis Thomas, and Paul Bahri. Unlikely to win against Craton or Thomas, but the match against Bahri should be really fun. Both are very athletic. Their match should be wild as they both try to prove themselves. – 0 points.

Paul Bahri (Team Toe Hold Red) – Blue Belt at 10th Planet Jacksonville - $13. He faces Anakin McMahan, Maximus Jolly, and Buddha Mcclure. This lineup of opponents is a little better than day 1, but not by much. He could get some subs, but I’m not confident – so go with your gut. – 0 points.

Matthew DeWees (Team Toe Hold Blue) – Blue Belt at 10th Planet Jacksonville - $13. He faces Maximus Jolly, Anakin McMahan, and Fedor Nikolov. Young Matthew impressed on Day 1 but he’s getting a big step up in competition for day 2. He has potential to sneak in a sub but I’m not predicting one. – 0 points.

Joshua “Full Time” Gibbs (Team Toe Hold Red) – Brown Belt at Nomad Jiu Jitsu of Lynchburg, Va - $12. He faces Kemoy Anderson, Elijah Carlton, and Moose Fritz. He might force some draws here, but likely no subs of his own. – 0 points.

Carson Thigpen Sawyer Griffin (Team Level) – Purple Belt at 10th Planet Decatur - $12. Sawyer steps in for Carson Thigpen. He faces Fedor Nikolov, Jacob Lamar, and Cam Hurd. While Sawyer is likely more rested than his opponents, they are tough. I think he can sneak a RNC against Lamar so he might be a nice pickup. – 6 points.

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