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Aaron Johnson
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Aaron Johnson

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Heel Hook Instructional by John Danaher

Aaron Johnson, commonly known as “Tex” Johnson, is a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt under Philip Smith and Murilo Santana, being one of the top representatives of the Unity Jiu-Jitsu Academy of New York City. An International Brazilian jiu-jitsu Federation (IBJJF) 3x Pan American No-Gi Champion, Johnson is known for his agressive and submission oriented style with which he submitted some of the sport’s biggest stars, names such as Davi Ramos and Jackson Sousa. Tex is also a former professional mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter holding the record for fastest submission inside the famous Bellator MMA promotion cage (15 seconds).

Aaron Johnson Jiu Jitsu

Full Name: Aaron Michael Johnson

Nickname: Aaron is often referenced by the name of “Tex”, this byname is correlated with Johnson’s early days playing football for his high school in Georgia, US. Johnson had moved from Texas to GA at the time and for that reason he was called “Texas”. A label later shortened to Tex.

Lineage 1: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie (senior) > Helio Gracie > Rolls Gracie > Romero Cavalcanti (Jacaré) > Roberto Traven > Philip Smith > Aaron Johnson

Lineage 2: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie (senior) > Helio Gracie > Rickson Gracie > Marcelo Behring > Mário Yamasaki > Murilo Santana > Aaron Johnson

Main Achievements:

  • 1st Place ADCC East Coast US Trials (2018)
  • 1st Place IBJJF Pans No-Gi Championship (2016/2017/2018)
  • 1st Place IBJJF New York Spring Open (2017/2018)
  • 1st Place IBJJF New York Spring No-Gi Open (2017)
  • 1st Place IBJJF Atlanta Winter Open (2017/2018)
  • 1st Place IBJJF Atlanta Summer No-Gi Open (2017**)
  • 2nd Place Kasai Pro 5 HW Grand Prix (2019)
  • 2nd Place IBJJF Boston Spring Open (2016)
  • 2nd Place IBJJF New York Spring No-Gi Open (2017*)
  • 3rd Place IBJJF World No-Gi Championship (2017)
  • 3rd Place IBJJF Atlanta Winter Open (2016)

Main Achievements (Colored Belts):

  • 3rd Place IBJJF World Championship (2015 brown)

Favorite Position/Technique: Straight ankle lock

Weight Division: Super Pesado (100,50 kg / 222.0 lbs)

Team/Association: Unity JJ

Aaron Johnson Biography

Aaron Michael Johnson was born on April 01, 1986 in Bedford, a city located in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, United States of America. Aaron’s father was in the military, and for that reason, Johnson moved regularly and lived across the country.

The interest for martial arts was strongly embedded in Jonhson’s family, and it was with his family members that Aaron started practicing tae kwon do as a child. During his teenage years ‘Tex’ joined his high school’s football program, a sport he played for four years. He would later add wrestling to his weekly activities, competing for Douglasville High School GA for one year, as a heavyweight.

After his 21st birthday, Tex Johnson decided to give kickboxing a try, joining muay Thai shortly after. Aaron went on to compete in a few unsanctioned amateur fights (smoker tournaments), conquering a flawless win streak of TKO/KO’s along the way.

The desire to compete in combat sports led Tex to raise the bar and aim for a career in mixed martial arts, giving start to his preparation in 2008 at the Knuckleup Fitness gym. With little experience in grappling, one of the main combat disciplines for a cage fighter, Johnson would later choose to add jiu-jitsu to his training schedule with coach Steve Headden.

The Hadden + Johnson partnership stood for a few years, even though Aaron trained with other jiu-jitsu coaches such as Rigan Machado and Jimmy Long during this period. His quest for the best training available would later drive Tex to Atlanta, GA, where he worked with academies such as American Top Team (ATT) and Brian Stann’s Warrior Legion. It was also in Atlanta that Johnson joined the Alliance Jiu-Jitsu Headquarters, being already a brown belt at the time.

At Alliance, Tex Johnson’s training was guided by the team leader/founder Romero Cavalcanti, as well as world champions Leonardo Nogueira and Lucas Lepri. This was also a time when Aaron started gaining more interest in BJJ’s competitive scene. In 2014 Lepri made the move to Charlotte, opening his own gym there. Being a fan of Lucas’ coaching style, Johnson followed suit and remained under the lightweight legend’s guidance, moving to the North Carolina city for that purpose.

Unfortunately for Tex, things did not run smoothly in Charlotte, and shortly after the move, he was asked to leave the team by coach Lepri. When inquired about the reasons behind the request, Johnson said “Lucas gave me two reasons for being kicked out. The first was because I was teaching jiu-jitsu down the road at a UFC Gym. Before I moved there I had told him I’d be working there and he said it was ok… (…) The second reason was that I was too aggressive during rolling” (BJJ Heroes, 10/2018).

After the Lucas Lepri ordeal, Aaron started actively looking for a team to train with. This was when his good friend and training partner Phil Smith decided to promote Johnson to black belt, a promotion that took place on April 26, 2015. Shortly after Tex did a competition camp, at Unity Jiu-Jitsu in New York City ahead of the NYC International Open. There he met coach Murilo Santana, who received Johnson with open arms and confirmed Aaron’s black belt rank.

After a successful run at the aforementioned NYC Open, Aaron chose to remain in New York to train full time with the Unity Team.

Aaron Johnson Grappling Record

53 WINS
  • BY POINTS
    13 (25%)
  • BY ADVANTAGES
    2 (4%)
  • BY SUBMISSION
    33 (62%)
  • BY DECISION
    4 (8%)
  • BY PENALTIES
    0 (0%)
  • BY EBI/OT
    1 (2%)

33 SUBMISSIONS WINS

#214eb8
Straight ankle lock
36
12
#86e620
Kneebar
12
4
#5AD3D1
Toe hold
9
3
#d1212a
Choke from back
9
3
#fad11b
Armbar
6
2
#f58822
Inside heel hook
6
2
#224aba
Submission
3
1
#ff9124
Calf slicer
3
1
#bf1f6c
Footlock
3
1
#22c9a5
Reverse triangle
3
1
#fad223
Triangle armbar
3
1
#03861f
Triangle
3
1
#039a1f
Flying armbar
3
1
33
(100%) SUBMISSIONS
42 LOSSES
  • BY POINTS
    20 (48%)
  • BY ADVANTAGES
    1 (2%)
  • BY SUBMISSION
    17 (40%)
  • BY DECISION
    1 (2%)
  • BY PENALTIES
    0 (0%)
  • BY DQ
    3 (7%)

17 SUBMISSIONS LOSSES

#214eb8
Inside heel hook
18
3
#86e620
Triangle armbar
12
2
#5AD3D1
RNC
12
2
#d1212a
Choke
6
1
#fad11b
Triangle
6
1
#f58822
Choke from back
6
1
#224aba
Arm in guillotine
6
1
#ff9124
Botinha
6
1
#bf1f6c
Brabo choke
6
1
#22c9a5
Calf slicer
6
1
#fad223
Reverse triangle
6
1
#03861f
Heel hook
6
1
#039a1f
Cross choke
6
1
17
(100%) SUBMISSIONS

Aaron Johnson Fight History

ID Opponent W/L Method Competition Weight Stage Year
7619Quentin RosensweigLInside heel hookKakuto 5ABSSPF2015
8137Neiman GracieLRNCNoGi Pan Ams94KGSF2015
8732Richie MartinezRichie MartinezLHeel hookKakuto ChallengeABSSF2015
8996Leo NogueiraLeo NogueiraLPointsAtlanta W. Open94KGSF2016
9047Romulo AzevedoRomulo AzevedoLN/AUAEJJF NYC Pro94KGSF2016
9053Abraham MarteAbraham MarteLCross chokeUAEJJF NYC ProHWABS4F2016
9308Andre GalvaoAndre GalvaoLChokePan AmericanABSR22016
9430Joao SoaresLTriangleBoston Spring O.100KGF2016
10016Bernardo FariaBernardo FariaLTriangle armbarWorld Champ.ABSR22016
10049Joao RochaJoao RochaLChoke from backBJJ Tour - CTABSSF2016
10198Marcos TinocoMarcos TinocoLPointsNY Summer OpenABS4F2016
10413Mike HillebrandLInside heel hookEBI 884KGR12016
10608Dillon DanisDillon DanisLArm in guillotineNoGi Pan AmsABSSF2016
10866Yuri SimoesYuri SimoesLPts: 19x0NoGi WorldsO97KGSF2016
11565Leo NogueiraLeo NogueiraLPointsUAEJJF Orlando110KGF2017
11581Helton JoseHelton JoseLPts: 10x0Atlanta W. OpenABSSF2017
11824Jonathan SatavaJonathan SatavaLPointsUAEJJF NY ProU110KG4F2017
11878Keenan CorneliusKeenan CorneliusLPointsLA National ProU110KGF2017
12100Tanner RiceTanner RiceLPts: 4x2Pan American94KG8F2017
12289Gianni GrippoGianni GrippoLPointsNY Spring No-GiABSF2017
12879Joao RochaJoao RochaLBotinhaWorld Champ.ABSR12017
13048Leandro LoLeandro LoLBrabo chokeWorld Champ.94KG8F2017
13276Mahamed AlyMahamed AlyLCalf slicerNY S. No-Gi OpenO97KGF2017
13284DJ JacksonDJ JacksonLPointsNY S. No-Gi OpenABSSF2017
13495Gordon RyanGordon RyanLReverse triangleGrappling Ind.ABSSF2017
14373Craig JonesCraig JonesLInside heel hookEBI 14ABSSF2017
14535Joao AssisJoao AssisLPts: 2x0NoGi Worlds97KGSF2017
14547Keenan CorneliusKeenan CorneliusLRNCNoGi WorldsABSR12017
14771Dany GerardDany GerardLPts: 0x0, AdvUS National Pro110KGSF2018
14996Matt LeightonMatt LeightonLPointsContinental Pro110KGRR2018
15088Tanner RiceTanner RiceLDQMarianas El PasoO85KGF2018
15217Tanner RiceTanner RiceLPts: 7x2Pan American94KG4F2018
16064Matt LeightonMatt LeightonLTriangle armbarF2W Pro 7393KGSPF2018
16112Fellipe TrovoFellipe TrovoLPts: 4x2ACB North America95KG4F2018
16125Victor SilverioVictor SilverioLReferee DecisionACB North AmericaABS8F2018
17088Rafael VasconcelosRafael VasconcelosLDQWashington NGO97KGF2018
17095Diogo SampaioDiogo SampaioLDQNo Gi Pan Am.ABS8F2018
18311Max GimenisMax GimenisLPts: 6x0NoGi WorldsO97KG4F2018
18334Yuri SimoesYuri SimoesLPts: 5x0NoGi WorldsABSR32018
18468Keenan CorneliusKeenan CorneliusLPts: 34x0Coast GrapplingABSSPF2019
19180Patrick GaudioPatrick GaudioLPts: 15x0Pan American94KG4F2019
19321Kaynan DuarteKaynan DuarteLPts: 6x1Kasai 593KGF2019
7620Vitor SchlosserWToe holdNY Summer Open94KGSF2015
7621Ricardo BastosWStraight ankle lockNY Summer Open94KGF2015
8794Joseph CashinWPointsGrappling Ind.ABSSF2016
8795Gordon RyanGordon RyanWPointsGrappling Ind.ABSF2016
9046Wellington PerotoWStraight ankle lockUAEJJF NYC Pro94KG4F2016
9429Lincoln PereiraWChoke from backBoston Spring O.100KGSF2016
10003Choi ChoiWPts: 0x0, AdvWorld Champ.ABSR12016
10602Leo DavilaWStraight ankle lockNoGi Pan AmsO97KGF2016
10605Samir AbdolkaderWFlying armbarNoGi Pan AmsABS4F2016
10865Eliot MarshallEliot MarshallWToe holdNoGi WorldsO97KG4F2016
11817Shaun DufreeWToe holdUAEJJF NY Pro110KGSF2017
11877William NymanWSubmissionLA National ProU110KGSF2017
12272Daniel RichardsWPointsNY Spring OpenO100KGSF2017
12273Christian SimmerlingWPointsNY Spring OpenO100KGF2017
12287Joao PauloWPointsNY Spring No-GiABSSF2017
13040Josh BowlinWPts: 7x6World Champ.94KGR12017
13097Kaliffa OlivieraWReferee DecisionF2W Pro 3694KGSPF2017
13400Kory AcchioneWReferee DecisionF2W Pro 43N/ASPF2017
13830Leo DavillaWArmbarAtlanta SM NGO97KGF2017
13831Taniel SantosWStraight ankle lockAtlanta SM NGOABSF2017
13869Oleksandr KarliychukWStraight ankle lockNo Gi Pan Am.O97KGSF2017
13871Matt LeightonMatt LeightonWReferee DecisionNo Gi Pan Am.O97KGF2017
14365Matt KirchwhemWEBI/OTEBI 14ABSR12017
14370A. KimlerWArmbarEBI 14ABS4F2017
14532Paul ArdilaPaul ArdilaWPts: 4x0NoGi Worlds97KG4F2017
14773Vitor SchlosserWChoke from backUS National Pro110KG3RD2018
14838Gilvan CostaWStraight ankle lockAtlanta W. Open94KGSF2018
14839Inacio NetoInacio NetoWKneebarAtlanta W. Open94KGF2018
14994Kenneth BrownWPts: 4x2Continental Pro110KGRR2018
15087Frisco DeLeonWAdvMarianas El PasoO85KGSF2018
15124Rodrigo FreitasRodrigo FreitasWCalf slicerPan AmericanABSR12018
15132Tanner RiceTanner RiceWKneebarPan AmericanABSR22018
15213Wellington PerotoWStraight ankle lockPan American94KG8F2018
15736Thiago JiulianiWPointsNY Spring Open100KGSF2018
15737Nicholas PenzerWStraight ankle lockNY Spring Open100KGF2018
17153Roberto TorralbasWPts: 2x0No Gi Pan Am.97KGSF2018
17154Jackson SousaJackson SousaWFootlockNo Gi Pan Am.97KGF2018
17708Tom deBlassTom deBlassWReferee DecisionF2W Pro 91ABSSPF2018
17807Riley MccormickWReverse triangleADCC EC TrialsO99KGR12018
17808JeQuan WilliamsonWTriangle armbarADCC EC TrialsO99KG4F2018
17809Andrew TevayWKneebarADCC EC TrialsO99KGSF2018
17810Hudson TaylorWKneebarADCC EC TrialsO99KGF2018
18053Kevin GallagerWPointsGamblers Inv.ABSSPF2018
18308Satoshi IshiiWTriangleNoGi WorldsO97KGR12018
18318Ben HodgkinsonWStraight ankle lockNoGi WorldsABSR12018
18333David GarmoDavid GarmoWPts: 10x2NoGi WorldsABSR22018
18604Ricardo AbreuRicardo AbreuWPts: 1x0Kasai Dallas94KGSPF2019
18905Gustavo AndradeWStraight ankle lockPortland OpenABSSF2019
18907Nisar LoynabWStraight ankle lockPortland OpenABSF2019
18952Matt LeightonMatt LeightonWStraight ankle lockSubSpectrumABSSPF2019
19178M SturuaWChoke from backPan American94KG8F2019
19309Jackson SousaJackson SousaWInside heel hookKasai 593KGRR2019
19310Valdir AraujoD---Kasai 593KGRR2019
19312Felipe PenaFelipe PenaWInside heel hookKasai 593KGRR2019

Aaron Johnson Highlight

Craig Jones Instructional

One Comment

  • Kyle says:

    He went to Chapel Hill High School. There is no such thing as Douglasville High. I know because I was a grade below him.

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