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

Checkmat BJJ

A list of the main figures in one of the most respected teams in Jiu Jitsu, with details about the fighters background and rise to BJJ fame and also the teams developments in the sports landscape. The leaders of this team are Leo and Ricardo Vieira, two well respected former world champions in Jiu Jitsu.

Arnaldo Maidana is a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Gilberto Gabas, being also one of the most exciting talents of his generation. Maidana made a name for himself in the brown belt division of the sport, conquering important medals in the World Championship (gi/no-gi) and Brazilian Nationals implementing an eye pleasing grappling style with which he submitted some of the sport’s hottest prospects such as Felipe Pena (3x) and Vitor Silverio (2x), a style that carried on to his black belt campaigns.

Karen Antunes is a jiu jitsu black belt under Mayko Araújo, being also one of the top athletes in the sport’s female lightweight class. Antunes paved her way to the big leagues of the sport in the lower belt divisions, where she conquered 3 IBJJF world titles among many other important placements. However, it was her performance at the prestigious Five Super League tournament on August 2015

João Pedro “Somalia” is a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Jonathas “Monteirinho” Couto and Eduardo “Jamelão” Conceição of Checkmat academy. Somalia burst into the grappling scene after winning two world titles at brown belt, later becoming a Pan American champion on his first year as a black belt, cementing his name as one of the top grapplers of his generation.

Gabriel Rollo is one of the top lightweights in the Brazilian jiu jitsu lightweight division of his generation, having medalled in important grappling tournaments such as the South American, World, Pan American Championships as well as the European Open. Learn more about this Checkmat black belt here.

Thiago Sá Fortes is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt under Ricardo Vieira, and a top level competitor in the IBJJF tournament circuit, representing the Checkmat academy.

Janni Larsson is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt under the illustrious instructor Shimon Mochizuki of the Arte Suave Academy (Checkmat affiliate) in Copenhagen, Denmark. A native of Sweden, Larsson is one of the most accomplished European black belts, and the first Swedish black belt world champion (2014).

Jackson Sousa is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt under Rico Vieira, competitor off of the Fightzone academy in Rio de Janeiro – Checkmat Academy headquarters, and who is another child of Vieira’s social project at the Cantagalo’s slums.

Thibaut Olivier is one of three French brothers (Maxime, Rodolphe and Thibaut) who are amongst the top Brazilian jiu jitsu competitors in Europe. Thibaut Olivier has represented France all around the world, medaling in many important tournaments. The Olivier brothers have also founded The Gokudo academy, a leading BJJ academy in France.

Luiz Ribeiro, also known as “Manxinha” or “Manxa” is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt under Ricardo Vieira from the Checkmat academy. Luiz Ribeiro is also the founder and owner of London Fight Factory, one of the main Jiu Jitsu academies in London, England, where he has helped the development of the sport in the country.

Gabrielzinho Moraes is a historical figure in BJJ having won the world jiu jitsu championship in the blue belt division in 2003 and in the black belt division in 2004, being the only competitor ever to have won the world championship in blue and black belt consecutively.

Rodolphe Olivier is a French grappler who holds the rank of black belt in jiu jitsu, a belt awarded by Ricardo Vieira. Rodolphe and his three brothers (all BJJ black belts) have represented France all around the world, conquering important medals. They have also founded one of the top academies in France, the Gokudo.

A spectacular jiu jitsu fighter from Checkmat and one of the most accurate finishers modern day jiu jitsu, Renato Cardoso received his black belt in 2012 by the hands of Rodrigo Cavaca and hit the ground running that year winning both a world title (CBJJE) and a Sao Paulo International Open only a few weeks after receiving the well deserved black belt.

Igor Rodrigues, also known as “Baixinho”, is a jiu jitsu lack belt under Marcos Chuck who trains and competes for the Checkmat academy in Rio de Janeiro. Originally from the region of Buzios, Igor became a Capoeira master before turning to BJJ. His biggest achievements to this date in grappling have been his titles at the Brazilian nationals.

An accomplished Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt with numerous medals in some of the most prestigious grappling tournaments in the world, Victor Costa is also the founder of Koral Fight Co. a jiu jitsu brand of kimonos and fightwear.

Valmyr Neto is one of the top BJJ black belts competing and coaching in the United Kingdom. Originally from Belém do Pará (the birthplace of Jiu Jitsu in Brazil), Neto travelled to England after he earned his black belt from Walter “Broca”, where he established his team in the region of Gravesend.

Marina Ribeiro is a top Brazilian Jiu Jitsu competitor from the Checkmat Team out ofRio de Janeiro,Brazil. A proof of just how talentedMarinais was her meteoric rise to black belt, which took her only 4 years, training under the legendary and former BJJ World Champion, Ricardo Vieira.

Leandro Martins, mostly known as “Leu” is a black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and one of the most highly regarded super featherweights in the sport having defeated big names such as UFC champion Jose Aldo. A former member of the famed “TT” team, Martins is also recognized as the cousin of the legendary Fernando “Terere”, the man who awarded him his black belt.

A fantastic Brazilian Jiu Jitsu practitioner from Danmark, Alexander Trans had a rampant career as a purple and brown belt, winning every major tournament in the world before earning his black belt from Leonardo Vieira late in 2011. Alexander is a Checkmat representative in Copenhagen, training alongside Ida Hansson, Shimon Mochizuki and many others.

The first Swedish female black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Ida Hansson is also one of the top competitors of her generation, having fought throughout the world, medalling in some of the world’s most important grappling tournaments. Hansson fights out of the Checkmat team in Denmark (Arte Suave) one of the top high level BJJ academies in Europe.

Nivaldo Oliveira a world Brazilian Jiu Jitsu champion and a black belt under the legendary Leo Vieira. Nivaldo has become one of the strongest fighters from the Checkmat team, having defeated several important figures in tournaments all over the world.