Marcelino Freitas is a top Jiu Jitsu black belt under Nova Uniao founder, Andre Pederneiras. Marcelino has trained with some of the best BJJ fighters of all time and is an extremely accomplished fighter himself with multiple gold medals at the Brazilian National Championships one of Jiu Jitsu’s toughest competitions.
Marcelino de Freitas in Detail
Full name: Marcelino Bernardo de Freitas
Nickname: People call him “Telino” which is short for Marcelino.
- 3x World Champion (1998 – Blue Belt, 2000 – Purple Belt, 2002 – Brown belt);
- 7x Brazilian National Champion (1996 – Orange belt, 1999 – Blue Belt, 2001 Brown Belt, 2002, 2006, 2008 – Black Belt);
- 4x Brazilian National Team Champion (1998, 2000, 2002, 2003);
- Pan American Silver Medallist (2010)
Weight Division: Peso Pena (64kg/141lbs)
Favourite Position/Technique: Omoplata
Association/Team: Nova Uniao
Marcelino Freitas Biography
Marcelino Freitas was born on the 20th of April 1982 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Marcelino heard about jiu jitsu when he was very young, as his older brother had already started training at Andre Pederneiras’s Academy. His brother and him often worked at a drinks warehouse owned by Mr Pederneiras who would often ask Marcelino if he would like to train BJJ, but Marcelino always refused.
As the older brother would jump from work straight to the gym most of the days, Marcelino often followed him to the academy and watched the training sessions. He loved to see the fighters roll and all the witty banta shared between the team members in class, typical of a Brazilian Dojo. One day, one of the fighters from Nova Uniao, named Marco Sabara decided to offer Marcelino a kimono and persuaded him to train, Marcelino agreed and there started his career in BJJ, the day was the 12th of April 1994.
Marcelino started in the kids classes, but as soon as he received his yellow belt he decided to start training also with the adults, where although he couldn’t roll with the grown ups he would train their techniques over and over again and see more techniques then the ones shown on the kids classes.
In his time at Nova Uniao, Marcelino was part of one of the best lightweight Jiu Jitsu teams the World has seen, sharing the mats daily with the likes of Vitor Ribeiro, Leonardo Santos, Jose Aldo, Marlon Sandro, Robson Moura and many, many others. Andre Pederneiras generosity came to play in many of Nova Uniao’s fighters and Marcelino was another one of those cases, coming from a humble background Marcelino would often train at the academy for free.
In 2010 Marcelino spent a few months teaching at Vitor Ribeiro’s team in New York. He took the opportunity of being in the USA to compete in the prestigious New York Open winning the featherweight division. He then competed at the Pan American BJJ Championship opening the eyes of many people who were unaware of this talented fighter, making it to the final and giving the Champion Rubens Charles the toughest match of the night, spending most of the fight on his back, only in the last seconds of the fight did Rubens manage to pass the Marcelino’s guard and secure the points that awarded him the victory.
Everyone was excited with the prospect of seeing the Brazilian on display once again at the World Championship in June, but unfortunately an injury took Freitas out of the competition. He decided then to move to Australia were he opened a Jiu Jitsu academy.
Marcelino Freitas Highlight
Marcelino Freitas vs Augusto Goheb