Alex Goff throws us back to last year’s jiu jitsu world championships.
Winning the gold medal at the world championships in both your weight division and in the absolute division makes you king of the sport.
Rafa Mendes is often considered the best grappler of this era, but competing in the lower weight classes makes it hard to be competitive in the absolute division. The two lightest guys to do this competed in the 194 pound division and one of them is Jacare Souza.
Rodolfo Vieira won the 2011 world championships in his weight class and the absolute division. His two gold medals made him the king. It looked like since the previous king Roger Gracie had retired from the sport, he would be the king for years down the line. Then Marcus Almeida “Buchecha” showed up and defeated him in the 2012 and 2013 absolute division.
In 2014, Rodolfo Vieira’s whole strategy was to defeat Buchecha in the absolute. Rodolfo even gained weight and competed at a higher weight class because he felt that would give him the advantage. 2014 would not be different. Both men went into this final contest already having won gold in their respective weight classes. Neither man wanted to give an inch and in this contest, the winning move was a take down by Buchecha.
While they were on the ground, Rodolfo attempted with everything he had to sweep the champion from his half guard, but in the end, he was unable to. His foe defeated him again.
We are still a few months away from the 2015 World Championships, but we know that Rodolfo will want to lock horns with his nemesis Buchecha again.