Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Team History, Fighter Stats, Biographies and News

This post is also available in: Portuguese (Brazil)

Leonardo Santos

Leonardo Santos is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt from the Nova Uniao team, being one of the most important fighters for BJJ in the early 2000′s. With numerous titles in his grappling career, Leo Santos was regarded by many as the best lightweight fighter of his generation, having victories over several great fighters such as Leo Vieira and Tiago Alves amongst many others. in 2006 Leo Santos ended his career with the kimono to follow his brother’s footsteps (Wagnney Fabiano) towards MMA fighter, and in 2013 Leonardo Santos was part of the cast of the TUF Brazil 2 reality show, a program produced by the UFC with the intention of seeking high end Mixed Martial Arts talent in the South American country.

Leo Santos Jiu Jitsu

Full Name: Leonardo Silva dos Santos

Nickname: Leonardo is often mentioned as Leo which is short for Leonardo.

Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Luiz França > Oswaldo Fadda > Sebastião Ricardo > Wendell Alexander > Leonardo Santos

Main Achievements/Record (BJJ):

  • 4x World Cup Champion (2002, 2003, 2004, 2005),
  • Silver World Medalist (2001 Black Belt Division);
  • Bronze World Medalist (2000 Black Belt Division);
  • ADCC Brazilian Trial Champion (2005)
  • 4th Place in the ADCC Finals (2005)

Favourite Technique: Butterfly Guard Sweep

Weight Division: Peso Leve (76Kg/167lbs)

Association/Team: Nova Uniao

Leonardo Santos Biography

Leonardo Santos was born on the 5th of February 1980 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He started training jiu jitsu when he was 4 years old under the legendary trainer Wendell Alexander (Co-Founder of Nova Uniao) in Sao Joao de Merití (Rio de Janeiro) at the Mello Tenis Club. Although Leo as a kid had other interests (mainly soccer) and didn’t enjoy training all that much, he felt obliged to train as his older cousin and brother (MMA fighter Wagnney Fabiano) were avid Jiu Jitsu practitioners. With time Leo Santos started enjoying the benefits of jiu jitsu and also started enjoying the BJJ routine, success in BJJ Comps came with this new found love for the gentle art.

In 1995 Mr Alexander (Leo’s Coach) joined arms with Dedé Pederneiras to make Nova Uniao, a team that quickly would become one of the strongest BJJ teams in the world, at the time of the merge, Leo Santos was already seen as a star in the making.

In 2002 Leo stopped competing at the Mundial (CBJJ World Championships) as this competition did not offer prize money to it’s competitors. This was something that a lot of fighters pressed for and which catapulted the rise of CBJJO (more explained on the BJJ Mundials Page), Leo Santos started competing in CBJJO’s tournaments only (with Gi) and was undefeated for over 5 years in that organization becoming widely considered by the media and the followers of the sport as one of the top 3 lightweights in BJJ at the time.

In 2006 after a short spell helping his brother Wagnney with his academy in Canada, Leonardo decided to dedicate himself fully to MMA. This shift would not be as smooth as he wished for, with several set backs, namely in finding big names to fight against and some problems with promoters and MMA organizations such as BAMMA. In 2013, 7 years after Leonardo began his MMA career, Leo Santos was part of The Ultimate Fighter Brazil 2 (Nogueira vs Wersum), a reality TV program produced by the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) which was Leo Santos’ first step in the big league of Mixed Martial Arts.

Leonardo Santos Grappling Record

15 WINS
  • BY POINTS
    6 (40%)
  • BY ADVANTAGES
    0 (0%)
  • BY SUBMISSION
    9 (60%)
  • BY DECISION
    0 (0%)
  • BY PENALTIES
    0 (0%)
  • BY DQ
    0 (0%)

9 SUBMISSIONS WINS

#214eb8
Choke from back
22
2
#86e620
Ezekiel
22
2
#5AD3D1
Baseball choke
11
1
#d1212a
Clock choke
11
1
#fad11b
Armbar
11
1
#f58822
Flying armbar
11
1
#224aba
Katagatame
11
1
9
(100%) SUBMISSIONS
9 LOSSES
  • BY POINTS
    2 (22%)
  • BY ADVANTAGES
    3 (33%)
  • BY SUBMISSION
    3 (33%)
  • BY DECISION
    0 (0%)
  • BY PENALTIES
    1 (11%)
  • BY DQ
    0 (0%)

3 SUBMISSIONS LOSSES

#214eb8
Mata leao
67
2
#86e620
Heel hook
33
1
3
(100%) SUBMISSIONS

Leonardo Santos Fight History

ID Opponent W/L Method Competition Weight Stage Year
240Royler GracieRoyler GracieLAdvWorld Champ.70KGSF1999
322Marcio FeitosaMarcio FeitosaLAdvWorld Champ.76KGSF2000
404Fernando TerereFernando TerereLPts: 4x0Rio x Sao Paulo75KGSUPERF2000
437Matt SerraMatt SerraLMata leaoADCC77KGSF2001
502Marcio FeitosaMarcio FeitosaLAdvWorld Champ.76KGF2001
972Marcelo GarciaMarcelo GarciaLPointsADCC77KGSF2005
973Jake ShieldsJake ShieldsLMata leaoADCC77KG3PLC2005
1014A. CacarecoLHeel hookADCCABSRD12005
1807Gregor GracieGregor GracieLPenADCC77KG1/4F2009
218Suyan QueirozD---Brasileiro82KGSF1999
433Leonardo VieiraLeonardo VieiraWPts: 3x0ADCC77KG1/4F2001
439Rodrigo GracieWPts: 2x0ADCC77KG3PLC2001
797Roberto WerneckWBaseball chokeWorld Cup76KG1/4F2003
799Rodrigo FeijaoWClock chokeWorld Cup76KGF2003
826M. HayakawaWArmbarShotooABSSUPERF2004
831Carlos PortuguesCarlos PortuguesWPts: 9x0BB Challenge 376KGSUPERF2004
911Ricardo LuizWPts: 9x0World Cup76KGRD12004
912Jackson MouraWChoke from backWorld Cup76KGRD22004
913Gabriel WilcoxWChoke from backWorld Cup76KG1/4F2004
966Jason BrudvikWPointsADCC77KGRD12005
968George St PierreWFlying armbarADCC77KG1/4F2005
1049Rodrigo FeijaoWKatagatameWorld Cup76KGF2005
1060Roberto RibeiroWEzekielWorld Cup75KGSF2005
1116Daisuke SugieWEzekielBull Terrier ProABSSUPERF2005
1806Yoshiyuki YoshidaWPointsADCC77KGRD12009

Leonardo Santos vs Mitsuyoshi Hayakawa (Superfight)

Leonardo Santos vs Roberto Werneck (World Cup 2003)

Leonardo Santos vs Jackson Moura (World Cup 2004)

Leonardo Santos vs Tiago Alves (World Cup 2005)

Leo Santos vs Paulo Pinheiro

This post is also available in: Portuguese (Brazil)

3 Comments

  • André Reis says:

    Muito bom, Léo!!!
    Você é uma fera, moleque!!!!! Tenho muito orgulho de, no passado, ter feito parte da equipe Mello Tênis Clube.
    Abraço do seu amigo e fã,

    ANDRÉZÃO.

  • David says:

    The butterfly is one of naturs most deadly predators, therefore it is no surprise that the butterfly guard is the deadliest of all guards, If put into the right hands (or perhaps feet)……

  • FABIO says:

    Show Leozinho,estudei c ele e fiz parte da nova uniao com o professor Capixa..Moleke fera desde criança gente boa..realizava treinos com ele no mello tenis clube,mas treinava em vista alegre..SAUDADES..nascido e criado no Ipase comigo…FIKO FELIZ POR TI….FABINHO UM ABRAÇO..

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