2023 Tezos FloGrappling IBJJF Grand Prix Series

Tainan To Face Isaque In 30-Minute Feature Bout At IBJJF FloGrappling GP

Tainan To Face Isaque In 30-Minute Feature Bout At IBJJF FloGrappling GP

Tainan beat Isaque in 2021 to win his first World title, but the controversial bout left much to be desired for Dalpra, Bahiense & the fans.

Jan 4, 2023 by Corey Stockton
Tainan To Face Isaque In 30-Minute Feature Bout At IBJJF FloGrappling GP

IBJJF world champions Tainan Dalpra and Isaque Bahiense are slated to face off in the main event superfight of the next IBJJF FloGrappling Grand Prix, coming to Austin, TX on March 3.

The bout, scheduled for 30 minutes in IBJJF ruleset, will further the story in a rivalry which has been steadily building since December 2021 in the Worlds middleweight final.

In that controversial match, then-rookie Dalpra defeated Bahiense to win his first black belt World title. The athletes spent most of the bout entangled in the 50-50 position, each often using lapel feeds to hold the other in place, and keeping the score even until the final 10 seconds. As the clock counted down, Dalpra released the position and tried to get behind Bahiense, who left the mat area in an attempt to get loose of Dalpra’s control.

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The referees ruled that Bahiense fled the mat, and awarded two points to Dalpra in penalty. With six seconds remaining on the clock, that penalty was decisive.

Bahiense has been determined in calling for the rematch, but no more so than after he won the medium heavyweight title in the first IBJJF FloGrappling Grand Prix.

“One year ago, Tainan Dalpra beat me,” Bahiense said in his post fight interview. “And I always say, ‘I don’t know.’ We fought like nine minutes in 50-50 with lapel. Of course, this is jiu-jitsu; he can do that. But I think he’s growing a lot and we can do better than the last time.”


When the rematch was announce, Bahinese posted on Instagram:

“A few months ago I asked IBJJF and FloGrappling to book this match, and with that I accepted the rules that Tainan asked for, 30 minutes so there’s no strings attached and so the strategy he used in our last fight doesn’t end up spoiling the show.”

Dalpra has been almost entirely unbeaten as a black belt. He boasts a record of 54-1 in overall competition; he’s 52-0 in matches sanctioned by the IBJJF. He is, without a doubt, the most dominant middleweight in action today, now with two world titles, two Pans titles and a European title to his name. 

But in his tenure at black belt, he’s only defeated one other world champion: Bahiense, who won the middleweight title in 2018.

Bahiense has been among the elite gi competitors since capturing his 2018 Worlds gold. He returned to the Worlds final in each of the next three editions — 2019, 2021 and 2022 — taking silver each year. In that time span, he also earned a Euros title and a Pans title.

But the story of this match isn’t so much about accomplishments as it is about styles.

Neither athlete showed their full capacity in the 2021 bout. It’s a shame; on paper, the clash of styles raises questions.

Can Dalpra, the surgically precise guard passer hold down the relentless Bahiense?

Can Bahiense keep the throttle open against Dalpra without paying the price?

Who’s jiu-jitsu is more efficient, more dangerous, over a 30-minute span?

On March 3, at the IBJJF FloGrappling GP, we may get our answers.