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

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BJJ Fanatics Instructionals

Nick Rodriguez

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Nick Rodriguez, commonly known as Nicky Rod, is a professional grappler – no-gi jiu-jitsu specialist – and former amateur wrestler who worked extensively with coaches Jay Regalbuto as well as John Danaher while representing the Renzo Gracie Academy-Danaher Death Squad team(s) early in his career and later helped form B-Team, a workgroup he co-founded with a few of his DDS colleagues. Rodriguez first made waves in the sport as a blue belt, a time when he conquered a silver medal at the ADCC World Championships (2019), arguably the toughest submission-grappling event in the sport, a privilege only achieved by a handful of athletes before him.

Nick Rodriguez Jiu-Jitsu

Full Name: Nicholas Pete Rodriguez

Nickname: “Nicky Rod” – short for Nick Rodriguez. Nicholas is also named The Black Belt Slayer, a nickname that was born from his early days in the sport, a time when he was already beating veteran black belts in competition.

Lineage: Carlos Gracie > Helio Gracie > Carlos Gracie Jr > Jean Jacques Machado / Rigan Machado > John Will > John Simon > Lachlan Giles > Craig Jones > Nick Rodriguez

Main Achievements:

  • 1st Place ADCC US West Coast Trials (2019)
  • 2nd Place ADCC World Championships (2019 / 2022)
  • 3rd Place Kasai 7 HW Grand Prix (2020)
  • 3rd Place ADCC US East Coast Trials (2018)

Main Achievements (Colored Belts):

  • 1st Place IBJJF World Championships NOGI (2018 blue)

Favorite Position/Technique: Body Lock Pass, Blitz Pass

Weight Division: Ultra-heavyweight (over 100,50 kg / 222.0 lbs)

Team/Association: B-Team

Nick Rodriguez Biography

Nick Rodriguez was born in August 1996, in Clayton, New Jersey, United States.

Raised in NJ, a strong wrestling state led Rodriguez to the mats at the age of 12. Competing for Clayton High School’s team Nicky qualified for the NJSIAA championships as a senior. After HS Rod caught the attention of Ferrum College, who brought Rodriguez to their wrestling program in the state of Virginia.

Rodrigues spent 1-year training at Ferrum and competing for the Division III college wrestling team where he went 34-7 and placed fourth at the East Regionals, albeit, failing to qualify for the NCAA tournament. After his experience with collegiate wrestling, Nick opted to pursue a modeling career while adding jiu-jitsu classes to his daily activities, a discipline he initiated in June 2018 with instructor Jay Regalbuto, at South Jersey BJJ.

Regalbuto immediately realized Rodriguez’s potential for submission-grappling, launching Nicky into the competitive side of the sport after a mere 3 weeks of training. Jay’s intuition proved right as the former wrestler conquered two pro-level tournaments in two months while holding on to an undefeated record.

After such a promising start, making a run for the upcoming ADCC USA East Coast Trials became a chance worth taking. To improve and test the talented jiu-jitsu rookie, Rodriguez, and coach Regalbuto started attending different workgroups, which ultimately led them to Gordon Ryan, arguably the best no-gi competitor in the world.

Rodriguez’s first private lesson with Ryan took place in October 2018. Coach Regalbuto’s initial plan relied on Gordon also recognizing Nicky Rod’s potential and inviting him to Danaher Death Squad’s training room. The idea proved successful as Nick started visiting DDS in New York twice per week in the build-up to the ADCC Trials, taking bronze in the tournament 1 month later, with about 6 months of training. Coach Jay promoted the Jersey native to blue belt while he stood on the podium. Rodriguez made another run at the trials a few months later in California, this time earning his ticket to the main event.

In September 2019, Nick Rodriguez competed at the ADCC World Championships, one of the toughest competitions in the no-gi jiu-jitsu world, where he beat several world-class black belts on his way to a silver medal and subsequent purple belt promotion, (also while standing on the podium,) from coach Jay Regalbuto.

After his ADCC experience, Rodriguez started training full-time with coach John Danaher, both in New York and later in Puerto Rico, when the team relocated to the US-owned Caribbean island. Once the team split, in 2021, Rodriguez helped form B-Team (check more on that below).

In December 2023, Nick Rodriguez was promoted to black belt by his teammate and co-founder of B-Team, Craig Jones.

SPLIT FROM DANAHER DEATH SQUAD

In July 2021, coach John Danaher announced the end of the Danaher Death Squad as a unified training and competition team, alluding to “the physical location of a future school, personality conflicts, conflicting values and an inevitable tension between the team brand and the growing individual brands of members” as the main factors for the split (original statement here).

Later that year, in August 2021, Nicky announced his new team, one formed alongside a few of his DDS training partners, namely Nicky Ryan, Craig Jones, Ethan Crelinsten. This new group was labeled the “B-Team” with its training base being set in Austin, Texas.

Nick Rodriguez Instructional

NOTE REGARDING NICKY ROD’S RECORD

Traditionally BJJ Heroes has only accounted for adult black belt records as they signify an athlete’s entry into our sport’s elite ranks. Nick Rodriguez, however, is a special case as he’s been competing in the pro-grappling circuit since he was a white belt. This has left BJJ Heroes with a delicate predicament of defining when to start accounting for his match records.

Considering the level of opposition and the extensive list of professional athletes Nicky Rod overcame from early on in his career, we believed it would be beneficial to have his matches in the pro-circuit included on his profile, prior to his black belt promotion.

Nick Rodriguez Grappling Record

36 WINS
  • BY POINTS
    13 (36%)
  • BY ADVANTAGES
    0 (0%)
  • BY SUBMISSION
    12 (33%)
  • BY DECISION
    5 (14%)
  • BY PENALTIES
    1 (3%)
  • BY EBI/OT
    5 (14%)

12 SUBMISSIONS WINS

#214eb8
RNC
50
6
#86e620
Kimura
17
2
#5AD3D1
Outside heel hook
8
1
#d1212a
Reverse triangle
8
1
#fad11b
Triangle
8
1
#f58822
Verbal tap
8
1
12
(100%) SUBMISSIONS
14 LOSSES
  • BY POINTS
    2 (14%)
  • BY ADVANTAGES
    0 (0%)
  • BY SUBMISSION
    2 (14%)
  • BY DECISION
    8 (57%)
  • BY PENALTIES
    0 (0%)
  • BY EBI/OT
    2 (14%)

2 SUBMISSIONS LOSSES

#214eb8
Inside heel hook
50
1
#86e620
Outside heel hook
50
1
2
(100%) SUBMISSIONS

Nick Rodriguez Fight History

ID Opponent W/L Method Competition Weight Stage Year
18167Hudson TaylorLPts: 5x0ADCC EC TrialsO99KGSF2018
21897Kaynan DuarteKaynan DuarteLPts: 3x0ADCCO99KGF2019
22039Kaynan DuarteKaynan DuarteLInside heel hookF2W 128105KGSPF2019
22536Lucas BarbosaLucas BarbosaLEBI/OTBJJ FanaticsABSR22019
23041Victor HugoVictor HugoLReferee DecisionF2W 135120KGSPF2020
23213Roberto AbreuRoberto AbreuD---Kasai Pro 7120KGRR2020
23831Roberto JimenezRoberto JimenezLReferee Decision3CG Kumite IVABS4F2020
25594Victor HugoVictor HugoLReferee Decision3CG 6 AbsoluteABSSF2021
29835Elder CruzElder CruzLReferee DecisionWNO 11O93KGSPF2022
33155Sloan ClimerLReferee DecisionSUBVERSIV 7ABS4F2022
35106Gordon RyanGordon RyanLOutside heel hookADCCO99KGF2022
35133Yuri SimoesYuri SimoesLReferee DecisionADCCABS4F2022
37010Gordon RyanGordon RyanLEBI/OTUFC FP Inv.ABSSPF2022
37886Felipe PenaFelipe PenaLReferee DecisionWNOABSSPF2023
46834Victor HugoVictor HugoLReferee DecisionWNO 22ABSSPF2024
18162Dylan RankinWKimuraADCC EC TrialsO99KGR12018
18164Bill BrownWRNCADCC EC TrialsO99KG4F2018
18168Andrew TevayWPts: 2x0ADCC EC TrialsO99KG3RD2018
19136Michael EgleyWPts: 2x0ADCC WC TrialsO99KGR12019
19138Fernando IrahetaWKimuraADCC WC TrialsO99KGR22019
19139Jimmy FriedrichWVerbal tapADCC WC TrialsO99KG4F2019
19141Casey HellenbergWPts: 6x0ADCC WC TrialsO99KGSF2019
19142John HansenWRNCADCC WC TrialsO99KGF2019
19410Joe DierkhisingJoe DierkhisingWPts: 2x0Forged in FireN/ASPF2019
20216Q. RosenzweigWRNCSub StarsABSSPF2019
20556Ashley AmosWRNCPolaris 10120KGSPF2019
21829Mahamed AlyMahamed AlyWReferee DecisionADCCO99KGR12019
21835Orlando SanchezOrlando SanchezWPts: 0x0, PenADCCO99KG4F2019
21896Roberto AbreuRoberto AbreuWReferee DecisionADCCO99KGSF2019
22532Victor SilverioVictor SilverioWEBI/OTBJJ FanaticsABSR12019
22738Luke RockholdWReferee DecisionPolaris 12ABSSPF2019
23212Vinny MagalhaesVinny MagalhaesD---Kasai Pro 7120KGRR2020
23214Bruno BastosBruno BastosWOutside heel hookKasai Pro 7120KGRR2020
23215Kyle BoehmKyle BoehmWPts: 2x0Kasai Pro 7120KG3RD2020
25408Yuri SimoesYuri SimoesWReferee DecisionWNO 7O99KGSPF2021
25592Pedro MarinhoPedro MarinhoWReferee Decision3CG 6 AbsoluteABS4F2021
29794Steve MowryWRNCFury ProABSSPF2021
35096Damon RamosWPts: 8x0ADCCO99KGR12022
35103John HansenWRNCADCCO99KG4F2022
35105Felipe PenaFelipe PenaWPts: 3x0ADCCO99KGSF2022
35122Andy VarelaAndy VarelaWPts: 17x0ADCCABS8F2022
35218Ezekiel ZuritaWReverse triangleEBI 20ABSR12022
35225Luke GriffithLuke GriffithWEBI/OTEBI 20ABS4F2022
35229Austin BakerAustin BakerWTriangleEBI 20ABSSF2022
35231Kyle BoehmKyle BoehmWEBI/OTEBI 20ABSF2022
40867Roberto JimenezRoberto JimenezWEBI/OTUFC FPI 4ABS4F2023
40869Vagner RochaVagner RochaWEBI/OTUFC FPI 4ABSSF2023
40870Dan ManasoiuWN/AUFC FPI 4ABSF2023
41841Philip RoweWPointsKBBA Inv.ABSSPF2023
42692Owen LiveseyD---Quintet 4ABSNA2023
42698PJ BarchPJ BarchD---Quintet 4ABSNA2023
45930Yuri SimoesYuri SimoesWPts: 3x0UFC FPI 5ABSSPF2023
47421Roberto JimenezRoberto JimenezWPts: 6x0UFC FP6ABSSPF2024
49949Mason FowlerMason FowlerWPts: 6x0UFC FP7ABSSPF2024
John Danaher BJJ Escapes

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