Fun night of no-gi action. Worked some more Z guard techniques. One was a pass where you reach down behind their top leg and monkey paw right above the knee on the bottom leg. Grab a hold of their bottom arm wrist, plant the top of your head into their stomach, kick back the trapped leg and pass into side control. The counter to that was to fight back and control THEIR wrist (same one trying to grab yours) and push their head downward into the ground. When you get enough space, you can recompose guard. We also discussed how you can counter the pass by controlling their monkey pawed arm wrist (thumb up for you), slide your shin into the bicep and work leg lasso position for the bicep slicer, the sweep (controlling their closest leg and kicking out), or spinning under and around for the omoplata.
Rolled with JC, Katie, Sean and Fausto, who's finally back from getting his Master's out of state and will be training with us while he looks for work. I felt like I had my strongest no-gi night possibly ever. Worked on maintaining good posture control, over/underhooks, head control and working submissions from guard and playing with hooks. Got tons of sweeps, played top game and worked passing, hit some nice transitions including armbar --> flower sweep --> armbar finish with opponent on his back, triangle-based sweeps, mounted triangle attempts, head scissor finish from north/south, etc. Felt really relaxed and in control the entire night, never losing guard and imposing my offensive game to the fullest. Even got out of JC's closed guard and passed/mounted/dismounted/north-south. Passing his closed guard is definitely an accomplishment because he's got those crazy long legs and can hold you there for ages while you gas out defending submissions.
All in all it was an awesome night. I need to work on getting used to more no-gi because the gi feels like a security blanket at times, even though I know my ground game is really solid right now.