Nicole Sullivan - An American BJJ Black Belt
By Elite Sports on
By Elite Sports on
Table of Contents
- 1. Nicole Sullivan Details
- 2. Nicole Sullivan Biography
- 2.1. Early Years of Nicole Sullivan's Life
- 2.2. Nicole’s First Love in Sports
- 2.3. Enrolled in Indiana University (IU)
- 2.4. Discovered the World of Martial Arts
- 2.5. Reawakened Nikki’s Passion
- 2.6. Nicole Sullivan’s Dedicated Efforts
- 2.7. BJJ Under Evan Mannweiler
- 2.8. Meet with Josh Hinger
- 2.9. Promotion to Purple Belt Under the Supervision of Dax Razzano
- 2.10. Joined “Nice Guy Submission Fighting”
- 2.11. Pursued a Professional BJJ Career in California
- 2.12. Joined Atos on Josh Hinger’s Encouragement
- 2.13. Received Black Belt
- 2.14. Sponsored by Elite Sports
- 2.15. Interview by Elite Sports
- 3. Historic Fights of Nicole Sullivan
- 3.1. Nicole Sullivan Vs. Danielle Kelly
- 3.2. Nicole Sullivan Vs. Taylor Biagi
- 3.3. Nicole Sullivan Vs. Vanessa Wexler
- 4. Main Achievements
- 5. Main Achievements (Belts)
- 6. Accomplishments and Position
- 7. Nicole Sullivan Professional Record Breakdown
- 8. Nikki Sullivan Submission Method Breakdown
- 9. Fight History of Nicole Sullivan
- 10. Top Fights Link of Nicole Sullivan
1. Nicole Sullivan Details
|Name||Yves Nicole Christine Sullivan|
|Date of Birth||6th August 1988|
|College/University||Indiana University, Bloomington|
|Last Weigh in||64 kg|
|Weight Class Division||Peso Leve (64,00 kg / 141.5 lbs)|
|Career Disclosed Earning||N/A|
|Fought Out of||San Diego, California|
|Foundational Style||Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu|
|Favorite Technique||Inverted Guard (Panda Guard)|
|Belt Rank||Black Belt|
|Awarded by||André Galvão|
|Head Coach||André Galvão|
|Lineage||Carlos Gracie (Senior) -> Reyson Gracie -> Osvaldo Alves -> Luis Dagmar (Careca) -> André Galvão -> Nicole Sullivan|
|Affiliation||Nice Guy Submission Fighting|
2. Nicole Sullivan Biography
Nikki Sullivan is a dynamic force to be reckoned with in the world of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. From a young age, she was an active ground player, honing her skills on the soccer field in high school. But it wasn't until her college years that she truly found her calling in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
With her fierce determination and tireless spirit, Nikki Sullivan gained a high rank in the grappling world, competing at the international levels and earning the respect of her peers. Whether she's training at the gym or dominating at a tournament, Nikki Sullivan remained idiosyncratic in the world of martial arts.
2.1. Early Years of Nicole Sullivan's Life
Nicole Sullivan was born on the 6th of August 1988, in the home of the University of Illinois, Champaign. At an early age, Nicole Sullivan moved to Columbus, Indiana with her family where she enjoyed the growing years of her life.
2.2. Nicole’s First Love in Sports
While studying in high school in Indiana, Nikki’s attracted to the exciting and challenging sport of soccer. Nikki always enjoyed playing on the ground that developed an affection for the beautiful game of football. She started practicing and competing until her final year of high school.
2.3. Enrolled in Indiana University (IU)
After completing her high school degree, Nikki enrolled in the renowned university of Indiana. IU was recognized for having one of the top martial arts programs in the country. Nicole availed of that opportunity eagerly. She signed up for the taekwondo course during her early years at the university.
2.4. Discovered the World of Martial Arts
Nicole Sullivan’s martial arts journey started at Indiana University in Bloomington. Despite initially being drawn to the Korean art of Taekwondo. However, her love for martial arts was far from reckoned.
2.5. Reawakened Nikki’s Passion
After a brief stint in Taekwondo, Nikki discovered the practicality and effectiveness of Hapkido and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. In her senior university years, Nikki’s passion was reignited, leading her down the path of Hapkido and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. She finally opted for her true calling in the world of martial arts - BJJ.
2.6. Nicole Sullivan’s Dedicated Efforts
She was immediately drawn to the practicality and efficiency of styles and techniques of both combat sports. She devoted herself to attaining high ranks in both martial arts. Nicole Sullivan's journey in the world of martial arts has been one of perseverance and determination.
2.7. BJJ Under Evan Mannweiler
Nikki started professional Jiu-Jitsu training under the supervision of Evan Mannweiler who was a purple belt at the time. Sullivan's interest in physical activities was based on her love of grappling. This "love at first sight" with the sport meant that Nicole fully embraced the university's grappling community and continued her training after graduation.
2.8. Meet with Josh Hinger
While counting on her graduation from Indiana University, Nikki had the privilege of meeting Josh Hinger, a well-known BJJ competitor who was in Indiana working on his Master's degree. Hinger taught her Jiu-Jitsu techniques and she continued her degree. This mentorship played a crucial role in Nicolle's progression in Jiu-Jitsu.
2.9. Promotion to Purple Belt Under the Supervision of Dax Razzano
Nikki also got the chance to polish her skills under Dax Razzano, who was a local black belt at that time in Bloomington. Dax Razzano's guidance magnified her grappling skills and promoted her to Purple Belt by observing Nikki’s phenomenal performance.
2.10. Joined “Nice Guy Submission Fighting”
After her purple belt promotion, Nicole's career as a teacher took her to Kentucky, where she joined “Nice Guy Submission Fighting”, a gym led by Bobby Emmons, Joe Baize, and David Overfield. Nikki's journey in the world of BJJ continued to flourish in Kentucky, where she continued to hone her grappling skills with the motive of attaining new heights in the grappling world.
2.11. Pursued a Professional BJJ Career in California
While in Kentucky, Sullivan began to contemplate making a career change and pursuing her passion for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu as a professional grappler. The idea of moving to California was a dream that had been brewing for some time.
2.12. Joined Atos on Josh Hinger’s Encouragement
The final decision to pursue this dream came after the 2017 ADCC West Coast Trials, where Sullivan ran into Josh Hinger. During their meeting, both discussed the possibility of Nikki moving to California to train and pursue her passion for BJJ.
Hinger showed his full support for the idea and encouraged Sullivan to train at Atos full-time, offering to help with the logistics. After joining the Atos BJJ, Nikki's extraordinary grappling skills made her a mainstay of the female Atos Jiu-Jitsu team. Her dedicated approach to Jiu-Jitsu techniques is a testament to her brilliant success on the mat.
2.13. Received Black Belt
As a white belt athlete, attaining the black belt level always seems like a unicorn. When one first puts his/her feet on the mat, it feels almost impossible to reach the black belt level. However, consistency and hard work beyond the comfort zone can make every grappler a black belt. The same thing happened in the journey of Nikii Sullivan.
Arriving in San Diego as an experienced brown belt, Sullivan dedicated herself to her grappling training, putting in dedicated 18 months of hard work and determination. On January 2, 2019, her efforts were rewarded when she received her black belt from the co-founder of Atos, André Galvão.
2.14. Sponsored by Elite Sports
Couple of years ago, Nicole Sullivan was spotted in a BJJ Gi that was nothing short of a work of art. This stupendous piece of martial arts attire was graced with the emblem of a recognizable brand of Elite Sports. Gi’s sleek design and top-notch color and quality, made her look like a formidable warrior, but it also displayed her allegiance to one of the most trusted names in the world of BJJ gear. So, the next time you step on the mat, take inspiration from Nicole and choose the unmatched excellence of Elite Sports.
2.15. Interview by Elite Sports
Elite sports conducted an exclusive interview to know the life journey and achievements of a proficient BJJ fighter, Nicole Sullivan. This interview uncovered all the secrets behind her success and brought you an inside look into the true struggle behind this diva.
Question: Any major accomplishments you’ve been able to achieve in that time?
Answer: I won the Abu Dhabi Pro Trials as a blue belt and had the opportunity to go compete in Abu Dhabi. As a purple belt, I won the No-Gi Pan Ams twice. Most recently, I am a 2x Fight To Win Champion, and I was a finalist at the 2017 ADCC West Coast Trials.
Question: What are your goals for this year? Next 3 years? Next 5 years?
Answer: This year: I want to be a world champion of Gi, and No-Gi!
Next 3 years: I want to get my black belt and be an instructor in a gym.
Next 5 years: I want to find a way to do Jiu-Jitsu for a living.
Question: What inspires you about BJJ?
Answer: I love that a smaller, weaker person can use technique and skill to defeat someone bigger and stronger.
Question: How long have you been training?
Answer: 7.5 years.
Question: How often do you train?
Answer: 6 days a week, for 2-3 hours a day.
Question: What are the essential things for the training?
Answer: Focus and hard work to perfect your techniques.
Question: What sort of gear do you usually keep in your gym bag before hitting the gym? Do you have different items for specific days
Answer: I keep a Gi, a rash guard, and spats. Also my belt, and extra clothes.
Question: Do you have a go-to finishing move?
Answer: I like many submissions, but my favorite is to take the back and choke!
Question: What do you think it takes to be a champion in your sports?
Answer: Dedication. If you work hard and don't give up, you can succeed.
3. Historic Fights of Nicole Sullivan
3.1. Nicole Sullivan Vs. Danielle Kelly
Start of the Fight
This was the final of the No-Gi IBJJF San Jose Open 2020 held between Nicole Sullivan and Danielle Kelly. Daniel is an active BJJ and UFC fighter.
The referee started the match and Danielle separated one leg of Nicole and tried to offensively reap her knee but failed to execute the move because of her technical defense game. In the second attempt, both fighters rolled in the 50/50 positions and then Nicole was on top struggling to control the legs of Danielle.
Overcame her opponent and got the Submission
She tried a half armbar attempt but it was futile. Danielle’s agility and flexibility was making her look easy to dominate the show. Meanwhile, Danielle scored two points for knee on belly. Her coach shouted from the back, “Attack the toehold” and Danielle nodded. But Nicole swept and got two points. In the next attack, Nicole got hold of the back of Danielle and got 4 points of back control. After the struggle for a few minutes, Nicole finally got her second hook in and transitioned into a triangle, and applied an armbar from the triangle position for the submission.
3.2. Nicole Sullivan Vs. Taylor Biagi
This was the semifinal of the IBJJF 2020 Pan No-Gi Championship fought between Nicole Sullivan and Tylor Biagi under the lightweight female black belt division. Tylor was a four times Pan title winner at lower belt levels and a BJJ instructor.
Both competitors started the match with great spirit and zeal. Rolling with each other, trying to gain a secure position, avoiding and defending the attacks of the opponent, and making some sloppy mistakes. Meanwhile, Nicole earned two points on the scoreboard. Attacked double leg takedown, earned two points, and tried to control the legs of Nicole. The match ended with two points each and Nicole two extra advantage points and the win.
3.3. Nicole Sullivan Vs. Vanessa Wexler
The final of IBJJF American National 2019 was held between Nicole Sullivan and Vanessa Wexler. Venissa is a mother, BJJ Black Belt fighter, school owner, and model.
Start of the Fight
The fight started with the instant drama of No-Gi fights. Both fighters attacked each other and showed flexibility and techniques. Nikki was comfortable on the ground and Venissa chose the standing position for attacks. Nikki passed the guard and got two points.
Dominant Show of Skills and Controlled Power
Later Nikki got another two points and the scorecard showed 4/0. Nikki passed another guard and got two points and another 3 points for a knee on the belly and another knee on the belly, 4 points for a back take. The scorecard showed 16/0 and one advantage point for Nikki. Nikki applied the RNC and got the historic dominant submission.
4. Main Achievements
|2018||IBJJF World No-Gi Championship||Bronze|
|2018||IBJJF World Championship||Bronze|
|2018||UAEJJF Grand Slam, Los Angeles||Silver|
|2018||IBJJF American NoGi Nationals||Silver|
|2018||IBJJF American Nationals||Silver|
|2018||F2W Bantamweight Title||Gold|
|2018||IBJJF American NoGi Nationals||Gold|
|2018||IBJJF American Nationals||Gold|
|2018||IBJJF Pan NoGi Championship||Gold|
|2018||IBJJF Masters World Championship||Gold|
|2019||IBJJF Masters World Championship||Gold|
|2019||IBJJF Portland Open Championship||Gold|
|2019||IBJJF Pan Championship||Silver|
|2019||ADCC US West Coast Trials||Silver|
|2019||IBJJF Los Angeles Pro Championship||Silver|
|2020||IBJJF European Open Championship||Bronze|
|2020||UAEJJF Grand Slam, MIA Championship||Gold|
5. Main Achievements (Belts)
5.1. Nicole Sullivan Colored Belt Achievements
|2018||IBJJF World No-Gi Championship||Brown||Bronze|
|2018||IBJJF World Championship||Brown||Bronze|
|2018||UAEJJF Grand Slam, Los Angeles||Brown||Silver|
|2018||IBJJF American NoGi Nationals||Brown||Silver|
|2018||IBJJF American Nationals||Brown||Silver|
|2018||F2W Bantamweight Title||Brown||Gold|
|2018||IBJJF American NoGi Nationals||Brown||Gold|
|2018||IBJJF American Nationals||Brown||Gold|
|2018||IBJJF Pan NoGi Championship||Brown||Gold|
|2018||IBJJF Masters World Championship||Brown||Gold|
5.2. Black Belts of Nicole Sullivan
|2019||IBJJF Masters World Championship||Black||Gold|
|2019||IBJJF Portland Open Championship||Black||Gold|
|2019||IBJJF Pan Championship||Black||Silver|
|2019||ADCC US West Coast Trials||Black||Silver|
|2019||IBJJF Los Angeles Pro Championship||Black||Silver|
|2020||IBJJF European Open Championship||Black||Bronze|
|2020||UAEJJF Grand Slam, MIA Championship||Black||Gold|
6. Accomplishments and Position
|2018||IBJJF World No-Gi Championship||3rd|
|2018||IBJJF World Championship||3rd|
|2018||UAEJJF Grand Slam, Los Angeles||2nd|
|2018||IBJJF American NoGi Nationals||2nd|
|2018||IBJJF American Nationals||2nd|
|2018||F2W Bantamweight Title||1st|
|2018||IBJJF American NoGi Nationals||1st|
|2018||IBJJF American Nationals||1st|
|2018||IBJJF Pan NoGi Championship||1st|
|2018||IBJJF Masters World Championship||1st|
|2019||IBJJF Masters World Championship||1st|
|2019||IBJJF Portland Open Championship||1st|
|2019||IBJJF Pan Championship||2nd|
|2019||ADCC US West Coast Trials||2nd|
|2019||IBJJF Los Angeles Pro Championship||2nd|
|2020||IBJJF European Open Championship||3rd|
|2020||UAEJJF Grand Slam, MIA Championship||1st|
7. Nicole Sullivan Professional Record Breakdown
|52 Matches||28 Wins||24 Losses|
8. Nikki Sullivan Submission Method Breakdown
|Submission Techniques||6 Wins||6 Loss|
|Outside Heel Hook||0||1|
9. Fight History of Nicole Sullivan
|2021||World Jiu-Jitsu IBJJF Championship||Larissa Campos||L||Points||Featherweight|
|2021||World IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship||Kristin Mikkelson||W||Decision||Lightweight|
|2021||World IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship||Ffion Davies||L||Armbar||Lightweight|
|2021||Medusa 1||B. Ste-Marie||L||OT||Bantamweight|
|2021||Medusa 1||Juliana Miller||W||Darce Choke||Bantamweight|
|2021||Medusa 1||Gillian Robertson||W||Knee Bar||Bantamweight|
|2021||Fight to Win 183||Sophia Nordeno||L||Split Decision||---|
|2021||Pan Jiu-Jitsu IBJJF Championship||Margot Ciccarelli||L||Decision||Lightweight|
|2020||IBJJF Pan No-Gi Championship||T. Biagi||W||Advantage||Lightweight|
|2020||IBJJF Pan No-Gi Championship||Vannessa Griffin||L||Penalty||Absolute Division|
|2020||IBJJF Pan No-Gi Championship||Nathalie Ribeiro||L||RNC||Lightweight|
|2020||Pan Jiu-Jitsu IBJJF Championship||Nathalie Ribeiro||L||Points||Lightweight|
|2020||Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Miami||A. Enriquez||W||Points||62kgs|
|2020||Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Miami||Heather Woods||W||Points||62kgs|
|2020||Fight to Win 153||Chelsah Lyons||W||Split Decision||145 lbs|
|2020||Fight to Win 137||Erin Johnosn||W||Knee Bar||140lbs|
|2020||European Jiu-Jitsu IBJJF Championship||Fffion Davies||L||Points||Lightweight|
|2019||World IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship||Gabi McComb||L||Other||Absolute Division|
|2019||World IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship||Kristin Mikkelson||W||Other||Lightweight|
|2019||World IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu No-Gi Championship||Nathalie Ribeiro||L||Other||Lightweight|
|2019||Fight 2 Win 119||Sarah Block||W||Decision||135lbs|
|2019||World Jiu-Jitsu IBJJF Championship||Gabi Lima||L||Other||Lightweight|
|2019||World Jiu-Jitsu IBJJF Championship||Amandine Layec Toulon||W||Other||Lightweight|
|2019||World Jiu-Jitsu IBJJF Championship||Nathiely de Jesus||L||Other||Absolute Division|
|2019||World Jiu-Jitsu IBJJF Championship||Elizabeth Mitrović||W||Other||Absolute Division|
|2019||Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship||Ffion Davies||L||Other||62kgs|
|2019||Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship||Buyandelger Battsogt||L||Other||62kgs|
|2019||Pan Jiu-Jitsu IBJJF Championship||Jena Bishop||W||Other||Lightweight|
|2019||Pan Jiu-Jitsu IBJJF Championship||Gabi Lima||L||Other||Lightweight|
|2019||ADCC West Coast Trials||Jena Bishop||L||Points||-60kgs|
|2019||ADCC West Coast Trials||Ha Bui||W||Other||-60kgs|
|2019||ADCC West Coast Trials||Danielle Kelly||W||Other||-60kgs|
|2019||ADCC West Coast Trials||Sara Apodaca||W||Other||-60kgs|
|2019||ADCC West Coast Trials||Hannah Sharp||W||Points||-60kgs|
|2018||Fight 2 Win Pro 94||Tracy Pham||W||Wrist Lock||Bantamweight|
|2018||Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Los Angeles||Catherine Perret||W||Advantage||62kgs|
|2018||Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Los Angeles||Gabi Lima||L||Points||62kgs|
|2018||EBI 16||Lila Smadja||W||Toehold||135lbs|
|2018||EBI 16||Bianca Basilio||L||Armbar||135lbs|
|2018||EBI 16||T. Goodell||W||OT||135lbs|
|2018||Fight 2 Win Pro 64||Vanessa Wexler||W||Decision||Bantamweight|
|2018||Fight 2 Win Pro 61||Nathalie Ribeiro||L||Decision||130lbs|
|2017||Fight 2 Win Pro 45||Rossie Snow||W||Split Decision||---|
|2017||Fight 2 Win Pro 32||Jessica Eye||W||Decision||135lbs|
|2017||ADCC West Coast Trials||Elisabeth Clay||L||Points||-60kgs|
|2017||ADCC West Coast Trials||Juliana Miller||W||Other||-60kgs|
|2017||ADCC West Coast Trials||Ashley Yoder||W||Points||-60kgs|
|2017||ADCC West Coast Trials||Jessica Jasper||W||Other||-60kgs|
|2017||ADCC West Coast Trials||Jasmine Rocha||W||Other||-60kgs|
|2016||Fight 2 Win Pro 13||Cristina Anaya||W||Other||135lbs|
|2014||Pan Jiu-Jitsu IBJJF Championship||Fiona Watson||W||Choke||125lbs|
|2014||Pan Jiu-Jitsu IBJJF Cham||Lila Smadja||L||Outside Heel Hook||125lbs|
10. Top Fights Link of Nicole Sullivan
Nicole Sullivan vs Madeleine Håkansson / Washington D.C. Summer Open 2019
Nicole Sullivan vs Amanda Loewen / Portland Open 2019
Nicole Sullivan VS Fabiana Borges / World Master 2019
Nicole Sullivan VS Jessica Cristina / Las Vegas Open 2019
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