For the evenest Worlds ever to be better, all that’s missing is you. And maybe Roger

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Bruno Malfacine comemora com a galera, no Mundial 2009 – quando correr para a arquibancada ainda era permitido. Foto Regis Chen/GRACIEMAG.

Bruno Malfacine celebrating with the crowd at the 2009 WOrlds – when rushing into the stands was still permitted / Photo Regis Chen/GRACIEMAG

With around 2,500 athletes signed up, the 2012 Jiu-Jitsu World Championship is set to begin on the coming 31st of May, and there’s an ocean of possibilities for the sport-Jiu-Jitsu world.

Who’ll be the new king? Who’ll be the biggest dark horse? Who’ll make a startling comeback? Which match in Long Beach will draw the most awe?

The only way to really get a taste of what’s to come, though, is to get in on the action yourself.

The sign-up deadline is but a few short hours away, so head to the  IBJJF website and get your name in there.

“My life changed because of a Jiu-Jitsu championship in the United States. I went in as a juvenile blue belt, won the adult division and a light bulb went off in my head; I realized I could actually get good at it,” Kyra Gracie remembers time and again.

A championship like the Worlds is just that. It can be a well-lit tarmac for a lot of careers to take off from. Or it can be a comfortable home for some, like Roger Gracie and Bruno Frazatto, two of the biggest World Championship medal collectors—who won’t be there due to a full-on focus on training for MMA commitments. “I’m out,” Roger told; “I’m fighting on July 14.”

But the Worlds can be an amusement park, or warfare. What other Jiu-Jitsu tourney can host so many classic matchups, so many clashes of generations and unfathomable encounters?

There are still some names who left signing up till the last minute, like Xande Ribeiro, Caio Terra, Kayron and Kron Gracie. But scanning the sign-up list, so far without the brackets, one can already start reveling in the potential classics, not even including the bouts in the absolute. Or would the fans not rub their hands in glee at getting to see bouts like…?

At Ultraheavyweight:

Marcus Bochecha vs Pé de Pano
Roberto Cyborg vs Léo Leite
Alexander Trans vs Rodrigo Comprido

At superheavyweight:

Cara de Sapato vs Léo Nogueira

At heavyweight:

Rodolfo Vieira vs Tarsis Humphreys

At medium heavyweight:

Romulo Barral vs Rafael Lovato
André Galvão vs Nivaldo de Oliveira
Marquinhos Souza vs Ian McPherson

At middleweight:

Claudio Calasans vs Victor Estima
Otávio Sousa vs Clark Gracie

At lightweight:

Leandro Lo vs Roberto Satoshi
Jonathan Torres vs Theodoro Canal
Lucas Lepri vs Renan Borges
Isaque Paiva vs Marcelino Freitas

At featherweight:

Rafael Mendes vs Leonardo Cascão
Justin Rader vs Wellington Megaton

At light featherweight:

Ary Farias vs Carlos Esquisito

At roosterweight:

Bruno Malfacine vs Rafael Barata

In the female contest:

Leticia Ribeiro vs Sofia Amarante
Michelle Nicolini vs Kyra Gracie
Bia Mesquita vs Luiza Monteiro
Luanna Alzuguir vs Shanti Abelha
Polyana Lago vs Penny Thomas


As you can see, there are so many possibilities that we left the rest to our readers to chime in with their favorites.

So will the 2012 Worlds be the most evenly matched World Championship we’ve ever seen?

So what do you say, gentle reader, who’s going to come out on top? Who’ll be the biggest revelation of the 2012 World Championship? Get clued in here on and on our Facebook page, through videos, photos and results. Always first hand.

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There are 11 comments for this article
  1. Marcio at 1:39 pm

    Kayron Gracie

    World Champion (2008 brown)
    4 x Pan American Champion (2010-2012 black, 2007 purple, 2006 blue)
    World Nogi Champion (2007 purple)
    Panamerican Nogi Champion 2011 black (medium heavy)
    5x Brazilian National Junior Champion
    (2004 blue, 2003 orange, 2001, 2000 & 1998 yellow)
    World Silver Medallist (2009 brown)
    World Bronze Medallist (2010 black)
    Pan American Bronze Medallist (2008 brown)

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