Leandro Lo stopped by the GRACIEMAG booth at the end of the fourth day of the 2015 Pan, on Sunday, March 15. When asked to autograph a copy of GRACIEMAG #202, featuring his loose game, he said, honestly: “Why do you want my autograph today, when I lost so badly?!” To which he got the answer: “Are you crazy? You lost only the last match against a guy much heavier than you and two times world champion! You did great!”
That’s Leandro Lo. He seems to never have enough confidence in his own skills, but what he does on the mat could not contradict more what he says. Once again at the 2015 Pan, he was the nightmare of his opponents, including Yuri Simões, Leo Nogueira, Otavio Sousa. Victor Estima, James Puopolo, and others.
For a middleweight, his results compare only to another legend, Marcelo Garcia. Here’s what he said to GRACIEMAG’s Marcelo Dunlop about his overall performance in Irvine: “In the end, I was glad. I had only tough fights and did not get tired. In my weight division, it was another war against Victor Estima and Otavio Sousa. It’s always tricky to fight them. The final against Otavio was a good one and I managed to pass his guard when he opened up to try to sweep me and tie the score. Otavio has one of the most dangerous guards in the game.”
The only thing Lo couldn’t do in Irvine was to defeat Bernardo Faria in the open class final, having to settle for the silver medal for the second year in a row. Here’s how Lo saw the final match: “Bernardo is very strong and you can’t allow him to get in the position he wants. I tried to surprise him with a triangle, but he ended in that over and under pass that he does so well and I couldn’t recover my guard. Nevertheless, I love big challenges and fighting tough, heavier guys is what keeps me going. I want to fight tough guys always and test my game. I have three gold medals at the Worlds and I want another three or four. It’s gonna be tough, but that’s what I want.”
Here’s Lo teaching one of his guard passes: