2015 ADCC: athletes put final touches on preparation for two days of war in São Paulo

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Teams getting ready for the 2015 ADCC

summer promoScheduled August 29-30 in São Paulo, the 2015 ADCC is less than 10 days away.

Many athletes already made their way to Brazil, as their training camp wrap up around the world.

We did a round up to see how the competitors prepared for the most important submission grappling event of the season.

Here’s what we found out.

Cyborg’s army in Miami

Roberto Cyborg shocked the world two years ago when he beat Marcus Buchecha for the open class gold medal in Beijing. In 2015, his mission is to stop André Galvão in the superfight and add another title to his career. To be ready for his extremely difficult mission, Cyborg put together one of the strongest camps for the 2015 ADCC. João Gabriel Rocha, Rodolfo Vieira, Abraham Marte, Vagner Rocha, among others, are some of the beasts training in Miami. Rocha summed the feeling of getting ready in such a strong camp: “The wrestling training here is awesome and Cyborg is the best in the world in no-gi. I wouldn’t have a camp like this one in Brazil.” Here’s a video with Cyborg talking about the camp itself, by Stuart Cooper.


Galvão leads Atos JJ troops in San Diego

André Galvão wants to join a very select group of champions after the 2015 ADCC. If he beats Cyborg in São Paulo, he’ll be one of two athletes to have a weight class gold medal, an open class title and two superfight wins at the ADCC. Zé Mário Sperry is the only fighter to have that in his record. To get ready for such a great accomplishment, Galvão is taking his preparation very serious. Alongside his impressive team of black belts, he has one of the strongest camps for the 2015 ADCC. Keenan Cornelius, JT Torres, Mike Perez, Dean Lister are some of the names training together in San Diego to compete in Brazil. Here’s a video with some images of the camp, by Patrick Flores.


No teams, just grind at Calvary Chapel

Wrestling coach Jacob Harman made a name for himself recently with awesome results from athletes that trained with him. Two years ago, he had three 2011 ADCC champions and a second place finisher training with him: Marcus Buchecha, João Assis, Romulo Barral and Otavio Sousa. For 2015, the list grew and his classes at the high school in Costa Mesa are packed. Gabi Garcia, Barral, Lucas Rocha, Edwin Najmi, AJ Agazarm, among others go there weekly to improve on their wrestling techniques and also take advantage of the insane physical conditioning included in each session with coach Harman. Gabi talks about how hard it is to train at Calvary Chapel: “It’s certainly one of the hardest session I’ve ever done. I feel like a monster for being the only woman among such strong beasts. It makes my mind even stronger. I’m all bruised up, but I’m sure nothing can be harder than training there.”

Training at Calvary Chapel

Training at Calvary Chapel


Lovato is back and he wants his first gold medal

Rafael Lovato Jr. started competing again last June after more than a year away healing a serious shoulder injury that required surgery to be fixed. With his eyes on the ADCC, he put a strong training camp at his academy in Oklahoma City. The presences of Justin Rader, Jared Dopp, James Puopolo, Xande Ribeiro and even a visit by Braulio Estima made the camp specially hard for the 2015 ADCC. Lovato talks about how prepared he is for going all the way in São Paulo: “I’m feeling awesome. We’ve had Braulio with us and I learned a lot of great technical details from him. Also training with Xande and all the others here. I’m so happy to have this quality of training for my ADCC camp.”

Dopp, Xande, Lovato, Rader

Dopp, Xande, Lovato, Rader


DeBlass, Tonon, Cummings lead the east coast crew 

In New York, Tom DeBlass, Garry Tonon, Ed Cummings, Jason Lees will do their best to keep the legacy of their lineage, which comes from two-time ADCC champion Renzo Gracie. DeBlass talked to Open mat radio about the importance of the ADCC for the grappling community: “It’s our Olympics. It doesn’t get any better. It’s the pinnacle. It’s where everybody wants to be. We want to go there and test ourselves against the absolute top guys in the world. So, our team will be there to prove we are here to stay.”



In Brazil, Burns, Calasans, Cavaca and Frazatto working hard to represent the home team 

Brazil’s supremacy throughout ADCC history is clear, as the country produced the largest number of champions by far. So, as the main event lands in São Paulo for the second time, the home team wants to be ready to represent the tradition once again. Gilbert “Durinho” Burns, Claudio Calasans, Bruno Frazatto and Rodrigo Cavaca joined forces to prepare for the war at the end of august. Durinho talks about the hard work they are putting in to compete: “I’m ready! It’s been a war. I’ve been training with Calasans for the past month and with Cavaca and Frazatto for the past two weeks. We’re going there to win!”

Cavaca, Burns, Calasans and Frazatto

Cavaca, Burns, Calasans and Frazatto


Keeping Marcelo Garcia’s legacy alive

Gianni Grippo, Dillon Danis and Bernardo Faria have some pretty big shoes to fill. Training under Marcelo Garcia, the only 4-time ADCC champion in a single weight division, they have to put on a good performance in the same venue their professor first awed the grappling world, back at the 2003 ADCC. Gianni talks about the camp: “It’s only Danis, Bernardo and myself. The training has been great. Marcelo helps a lot with this one. More than anything he tells us that the best way to approach this event is to play our game and look to attack throughout. I’ve asked him what he thinks about the rules and how it’s best to approach it but he always keeps it simple saying just to look to finish the match- don’t worry about the points and time.”

Grippo and Danis

Grippo and Danis


Cobrinha wants to repeat what he did in China

Rubens Cobrinha pursued his first gold medal at the ADCC for four years. He nearly made it in Barcelona (2009) and Nottingham (2011), when he had to settle for two silver medals after being stopped in the final by Rafael Mendes. In 2013, he had his redemption when he made it all the way after another tough final match with his biggest rival. In São Paulo, Cobrinha’s birth state, he wants his second gold medal to tie the count with Mendes and be just one behind the -66kg division titles record-holder, Royler Gracie. Cobrinha decided to have his camp at home in Los Angeles and with the help of Fabio Passos, Lucas Lepri, Gabi Garcia and others, he’s been training hard for the 2015 ADCC. Here’s a video with some of his training routine.


Libório and Sperry sweating bullets to relive old rivalry

One of the biggest attractions of the 2015 ADCC will be the masters super-match between living legends Zé Mário Sperry and Ricardo Libório. As both were bred by the same master, Carlson Gracie, there’s a lot of history in that match. Libório, 48, prepared for the match with the ATT crew in Florida. He tells how hard the sessions were: “My mother asked me to stop rolling with the young guys from ATT. She said I was going to get hurt. Zé Mário may win as he is one of ADCC’s greatest champions, but he’ll have to work hard to beat me.”

De La Riva, Libório, Bustamante and Jaoude. Photo Clever Barbosa

De La Riva, Libório, Bustamante and Jaoude. Photo Clever Barbosa

Zé Mário is training in Rio de Janeiro, at X-Gym, and also sharpening his Jiu-Jitsu with Roberto Gordo. He told GRACIEMAG how he is feeling for the super-match: “I love training, so It’s all good. Libório was one of the best training partners I’ve ever had. He’s good in all aspects of the match. It’s going to be a huge challenge.”

José Mário Sperry

José Mário Sperry

The 2015 ADCC kicks off August 29, in São Paulo, Brazil. Don’t miss GRACIEMAG’s full coverage on all our social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Periscope).

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