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Components of Style

By Josh Jensen, 11/27/20, 5:30PM MST


The Art of Reattacking  

Reattacks have emerged as one of the most prolific concepts in high-level wrestling. Some of the best wrestlers on the world stage have mastered reattacking. Reattacking can be applied both offensively and defensively and is sometimes referred to as chain wrestling. The ability to do so makes wrestlers a constant threat and when both wrestlers understand the concept, it makes for fantastic matchups like we recently saw between Jordan Burroughs and Zahid Valencia. In this piece, we’ll examine how some of Utah’s best use reattacks to put big points on the board and the nuances of their technique. 

Offensive Reattacking 

Offensive reattacks are sometimes called double-attacks. The first combinations young wrestlers often learn are to attack one leg and if it disappears to attack the other leg. Basic examples of this are shooting and missing a high-C which opens up the single on the other leg and vice versa. On the world stage, one of the most exemplary reattackers is David Taylor. Taylor will fire off one shot and if he misses, he takes a very brief moment to reload and fires again. He will do this several times until he scores. This style of rapid-fire shooting takes its toll on the opponent who is constantly having to sprawl, downblock, and backpedal in their attempts to regroup. 

Utah wrestlers who apply this style of offensive chain wrestling with great success are River Wardle, Brady Merkley, Brian Evans, and Gabe Sanders. 

Defensive Reattacking

Reattacking as the defensive wrestler involves timing and/or angles. There’s usually a small window of opportunity to score with a reattack after the opponent shoots. A concept that many wrestlers have a lot of success with making sure their leg is clear by using a downblock or underhook as a wedge and creating an angle while also maintaining pressure on the head of their opponent with a short armed front-headlock. Their opponent’s head will almost inevitably pop up and expose their lower body for leg attacks. Two Utahans that demonstrate this well are Channing Warner and Will Korth. 


Warner is great at running his feet at an angle. He almost goes in a full circle to finish this hard earned takedown.

The key for this series that Warner and Korth do so well above is move their feet. This reattack doesn’t work if wrestlers don’t move their feet and hustle to a dominant angle. 

Reattacking the Reattack 

Yes, the game of reattacking can reach some Inception levels of depth when both wrestlers are high caliber. My favorite matches to watch are shootouts where each wrestler is looking to rettack on reattacks several times throughout the course of the match. It’s an exhausting pace to maintain but those are the matches fans love to see and competitors always remember. A Utah wrestler that does this well is Bridger Ricks. Ricks will fire off a shot that quality opponents make a good read on and do well to downblock to circle off to an angle to try and hit their own shot. Ricks is quick and has great reactions and will evade the reattack attempt and fire off another attack of his own to score. 

Ricks looks for an ankle pick, his opponent does a good downblock and shoots a high-C, Ricks downblocks the attempted reattack, and transitions to an arm drag. 

Jumping Levels 

As wrestlers progress to higher levels of the sport like college and international, the more common reattacking is. Much like scrambling, it’s becoming an essential skill among the sport’s elite. It takes time to develop, but there’s ways for all wrestlers to add reattacks to their toolkit. Some are quick and reactive like Ricks which is a huge bonus, but others who may not possess the speed can become masters of timing and angles to score with reattacks. There are even wrestlers who are excelling at freeing their leg after their opponent gets to it and transitioning to their own offense. A recent example of this that I encourage everyone to go watch is the match between Evan Henderson and Anthony Echemendia. Henderson did a great job of fending off deep leg attacks and working through the process of freeing his leg and then shooting his shot. It doesn’t matter how wrestlers are built, their level of athleticism, or the style they utilize. Everyone can learn to reattack in some form and jump levels.