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

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Rafael Mendes
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Rafael Mendes

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Rafael Mendes, also known as “Rafa” Mendes, is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) black belt world champion under the illustrious coach Ramon Lemos. Considered a grappling “phenom” since his late teens and acclaimed as “the king of the featherweight division” by many grappling enthusiasts, Rafael was also one of the competitors who brought recognition to the 50-50 guard and the berimbolo, positions he used to de-throne the former 4x world champion Rubens Charles. Rafael Mendes is also the brother of another Jiu Jitsu World Champion – Guilherme Mendes. On the 31st of May 2015, at the 20th World Jiu Jitsu Championship, Rafael Mendes broke the record of featherweight world titles set by Royler Gracie in 1999, with his 5th win at black belt. He increased his world title tally to 6 the following year.

Rafael Mendes Jiu Jitsu

Rafael Mendes: Rafael Mendes Godoy

Nickname: “Rafa” which is short for Rafael.

Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Carlson Gracie > Andre Pederneiras > Ramon Lemos > Rafael Mendes

Main Achievements:

  • IBJJF World Champion (2016, 2015, 2014, 2012, 2011, 2010)
  • ADCC Champion (2009, 2011)
  • IBJJF Pan American Champion (2012, 2011)
  • IBJJF European Champion (2014, 2010, 2009)
  • UAEJJF World Pro Champion (2010, 2009)
  • CBJJ Brazilian National Champion (2010)

Favorite technique: Leg-Drag Guad Pass, Berimbolo & 50-50 Guard

Weight Division: Peso Pena (70kg – 154lbs)

Affiliation/Team: Atos Jiu Jitsu.

Rafael Mendes Biography

Rafael was born on the 20th of June, 1989 in Rio Claro, a city in the state of Sao Paulo, Brazil. Rafael and Guilherme Mendes, his brother, started their jiu jitsu training through an older cousin named Thiago Mendes, who was a purple belt under Leonardo Santos. After only a few months of training, cousin thiago recognised the potential of the Mendes’ and took them to train at the academy headquarters with his coach, Santos.

This HQ was led by both Leonardo and Ramon Lemos – the man who would later become Atos’ team leader. Being just 13 years old, but already incredibly gifted Rafael and his brother picked up all the techniques with amazing ease, and started dedicating themselves to BJJ almost full time, training at least two times per day.

It was also around this time that the Mendes’s parents split, leaving both brothers without a fatherly figure. Guilherme and Rafael have reported to the media on several occasions of how their coach Ramon Lemos filled most of that void, teaching them not only grappling, but the moral values with which they built their characters.

At the age of 17, having never competed in a no-gi (no-kimono) competition before, Ramon Lemos enrolled the purple belt Rafael in the ADCC Brazilian Trials, one of the hardest submission-wrestling events in the country. Rafael made it to the final of the trials losing in a hard match against Bruno Frazatto (who would later become his friend and team mate at Atos).

Rafael was an amazing BJJ student winning all World Championships from blue belt all the way to brown in consecutive years, achieving the bronze medal in his first year as a black belt (2009) and winning his first world gold medal as a black belt in 2010.

Ramon Lemos awarded Rafael his black belt in late 2008, the young Mendes was not scared with the task at hand, and almost immediately started paving his road with success. Rafael won the Jiu Jitsu World Pro Abu Dhabi Cup, one of the top competitions in the world, winning a gold medal also at the ADCC finals.

Below is an account of Rafael Mendes’ jiu jitsu fight record in the most important tournaments of the jiu jitsu calendar.

Banner picture taken by Ross Finlayson.

Rafael Mendes Grappling Record

93 WINS
  • BY POINTS
    26 (28%)
  • BY ADVANTAGES
    5 (5%)
  • BY SUBMISSION
    59 (63%)
  • BY DECISION
    2 (2%)
  • BY PENALTIES
    1 (1%)
  • BY DQ
    0 (0%)

59 SUBMISSIONS WINS

#214eb8
Armbar
32
19
#86e620
Choke from back
22
13
#5AD3D1
Wristlock
7
4
#d1212a
RNC
7
4
#fad11b
Brabo choke
5
3
#f58822
Triangle armbar
5
3
#224aba
Choke
5
3
#ff9124
Triangle
5
3
#bf1f6c
Kimura
3
2
#22c9a5
Bow and arrow
3
2
#fad223
Anaconda
2
1
#03861f
Inverted triangle
2
1
#039a1f
Cross choke
2
1
59
(100%) SUBMISSIONS
7 LOSSES
  • BY POINTS
    1 (14%)
  • BY ADVANTAGES
    1 (14%)
  • BY SUBMISSION
    0 (0%)
  • BY DECISION
    4 (57%)
  • BY PENALTIES
    0 (0%)
  • BY DQ
    1 (14%)

0 SUBMISSION LOSSES

Rafael Mendes Fight History

ID Opponent W/L Method Competition Weight Stage Year
2051Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesLPointsCapital Challenge70KGF2008
2120Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesLDQPan American70KGSF2009
2295Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesLReferee DecisionWorld Champ.70KGSF2009
2845Augusto MendesAugusto MendesLReferee DecisionWorld Pro.65KGF2011
2885Rodolfo VieiraRodolfo VieiraLReferee DecisionWorld P. NoGiABSF2011
4653Augusto MendesAugusto MendesLPts: 2x2, AdvWorld Champ.70KGF2013
4854Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesLReferee DecisionADCC66KGF2013
5120Clark GracieClark GracieDN/AMetamoris 3ABSSPF2014
2048Michael ReynaWChokeCapital Challenge70KG4F2008
2050Mario ReisMario ReisWPointsCapital Challenge70KGSF2008
2064Katsuya ToidaWRNCDeep X IIINASPF2009
2097Van BaardewijkWTriangleWorld Pro.65KGR12009
2099Robson MouraRobson MouraWPointsWorld Pro.65KG4F2009
2102Renato TavaresRenato TavaresWPts: 6x0World Pro.65KGSF2009
2103Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesWPointsWorld Pro.65KGF2009
2116Rodrigo RanieriRodrigo RanieriWPts: 14x6Pan American70KG4F2009
2199Jayson PatinoWTriangleADCC66KGR12009
2203Justin RaderJustin RaderWAnacondaADCC66KG4F2009
2205Leonardo VieiraLeonardo VieiraWRNCADCC66KGSF2009
2207Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesWPointsADCC66KGF2009
2292Carlos LemosCarlos LemosWPts: 4x0World Champ.70KG4F2009
2449Wellington DiasWellington DiasWArmbarEuropean70KGSF2010
2450Renan BorgesWPts: 2x0European70KGF2010
2469Denilson PimentaDenilson PimentaWPts: 2x0WPC SD trials65KGSF2010
2477Denilson PimentaDenilson PimentaWChoke from backWPC Gr Trials65KGSF2010
2479Theodoro CanalTheodoro CanalWChoke from backWPC Gr Trials65KGF2010
2600Guilherme MendesGuilherme MendesWPts: 4x2World Pro.65KGF2010
2614Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesWPts: 4x2Brasileiro70KGF2010
2633Ryan HallRyan HallWPts: 5x2World Champ.70KGR12010
2634Gustavo CaprioWChoke from backWorld Champ.70KGR22010
2640Daisuke NakamuraDaisuke NakamuraWArmbarWorld Champ.70KG4F2010
2642Denilson PimentaDenilson PimentaWChoke from backWorld Champ.70KGSF2010
2643Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesWPts: 4x4, AdvWorld Champ.70KGF2010
2837Marcelino FreitasMarcelino FreitasWBrabo chokeWorld Pro.65KGR12011
2841Gustavo FalciroliWChoke from backWorld Pro.65KG4F2011
2843Bruno MalfacineBruno MalfacineWPts: 7x0World Pro.65KGSF2011
2884Gilmar OliveiraWPointsWorld P. NoGiABS4F2011
2943Daisuke NakamuraDaisuke NakamuraWChokeWorld Champ.70KGRDS2011
2955Justin RaderJustin RaderWChokeWorld Champ.70KGRDS2011
3039Leonardo SaggioroWInverted triangleWorld Champ.70KG4F2011
3067Mario ReisMario ReisWPts: 4x2World Champ.70KGSF2011
3080Augusto MendesAugusto MendesWPts: 4x4, AdvWorld Champ.70KGF2011
3140Bruno FrazattoBruno FrazattoWPts: 6x0ADCC66KGR12011
3180Justin RaderJustin RaderWRNCADCC66KG4F2011
3201Robson MouraRobson MouraWPointsADCC66KGSF2011
3215Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesWPenADCC66KGF2011
3501Andre MonteiroAndre MonteiroWArmbarPan American70KG4F2012
3502Justin RaderJustin RaderWTrianglePan American70KG4F2012
3506Mario ReisMario ReisWWristlockPan American70KGSF2012
3508Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesWArmbarPan American70KGF2012
3872Sandro “Batata”WBrabo chokeWorld Champ.70KGR22012
3884Cristiano RenatoWKimuraWorld Champ.70KGR32012
3891Takayuki KoyamaWChoke from backWorld Champ.70KG4F2012
3895Mario ReisMario ReisWPts: 2x0World Champ.70KGSF2012
3897Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesWReferee DecisionWorld Champ.70KGF2012
4080Andre MonteiroAndre MonteiroWBrabo chokeHouston Open70KGF2012
4431Renato VieiraWArmbarPan American70KG4F2013
4433Mario ReisMario ReisWPts: 2x0Pan American70KGSF2013
4434Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesWReferee DecisionPan American70KGF2013
4650Mayko BorgesWArmbarWorld Champ.70KG4F2013
4651Mario ReisMario ReisWAdvWorld Champ.70KGSF2013
4840Y. TakahitoWKimuraADCC66KGR12013
4849Tetsu SuzukiWArmbarADCC66KG4F2013
4851Joao MiyaoJoao MiyaoWPts: 2x0ADCC66KGSF2013
5004Geoffrey VillarealWArmbarSF Open70KGSF2013
5013Gustavo CarpioWWristlockHouston Open70KGSF2013
5019UnknownWTriangle armbarRickson Cup70KG4F2013
5020UnknownWArmbarRickson Cup70KGSF2013
5021UnknownWArmbarRickson Cup70KGF2013
5091Gianni GrippoGianni GrippoWPts: 3x0European70KGSF2014
5093Paulo MiyaoPaulo MiyaoWPts: 3x0European70KGF2014
5574Tumas KristenWChoke from backWorld Champ.70KGRDS2014
5577Nicollas AraujoWChoke from backWorld Champ.70KGRDS2014
5587Gianni GrippoGianni GrippoWChoke from backWorld Champ.70KG4F2014
5590Mario ReisMario ReisWChoke from backWorld Champ.70KGSF2014
5592Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesWPts: 10x8World Champ.70KGF2014
6025Yagi VicenteWTriangle armbarRickson Cup70KGR12014
6026Tsukada IchitaroWWristlockRickson Cup70KGR22014
6027Hirao YutoWCross chokeRickson Cup70KG4F2014
6028Okamoto YujiWArmbarRickson Cup70KGSF2014
6033Charles GasparWBow and arrowRickson CupABSSF2014
6418Osvaldo MoizinhoOsvaldo MoizinhoWChoke from backBerkut OpenABSSPF2015
6424Osvaldo MoizinhoOsvaldo MoizinhoWRNCBerkut Open NoGiABSSPF2015
7160Andre MonteiroAndre MonteiroWBow and arrowWorld Champ.70KG8F2015
7168Phillipe D. MonicaWChoke from backWorld Champ.70Kg4F2015
7169Mario ReisMario ReisWWristlockWorld Champ.70KGSF2015
7170Rubens CharlesRubens CharlesWPts: 6x0World Champ.70KGF2015
7320UnknownWArmbarBullterrier Cup70KG4F2015
7321UnknownWArmbarBullterrier Cup70KGSF2015
7322UnknownWArmbarBullterrier Cup70KGF2015
7323UnknownWArmbarBullterrier CupABS4F2015
7326Anderson TakahashiWArmbarBullterrier CupABSSF2015
9337Brian StuebnerWArmbarSan Antonio Open70KG4F2016
9339Isaac DoederleinIsaac DoederleinWPts: 0x0, AdvSan Antonio Open70KGSF2016
9340Gabriel MarangoniGabriel MarangoniWPts: 12x0San Antonio Open70KGF2016
9515Vitor PaschoalWArmbarLas Vegas Open70KGSF2016
9516Samir ChantreSamir ChantreWArmbarLas Vegas Open70KGF2016
9593Ichitaro TsukadaWChoke from backWorld Champ.70KGR22016
9601Leo SaggioroWPts: 6x0World Champ.70KG4F2016
9603Osvaldo MoizinhoOsvaldo MoizinhoWTriangle armbarWorld Champ.70KGSF2016
9605Marcio AndreMarcio AndreWPts: 10x10, AdvWorld Champ.70KGF2016

Rafael Mendes vs Cobrinha

Rafael Mendes vs Justin Rader

Rafael Mendes vs Gustavo Falciroli

Rafael Mendes Berimbolo Highlight by the Jiu Jitsu Lab

Rafael Mendes Highlight

 

This post is also available in: Portuguese (Brazil)

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