6 Americans To Watch At IBJJF 2017 Worlds

It's no secret that Brazilians are still the dominant force in the sport of jiu-jitsu. The South American nation has dominated jiu-jitsu even since the art expanded to countries across the world. 

Only a handful of non-Brazilians have won gold medals at the World Championships over the years, but there are many who have made it to the podium. 

Here we identify six American medal prospects to keep an eye on in the black belt divisions.

Alec Baulding

Alliance black belt Baulding is little-known in comparison to some of the bigger names from the powerhouse team, but he is the 2017 European champion and has no problem fighting his teammates if circumstances require it: he took out tough names such as Marcos Tinoco and Isaque Bahiense in Lisbon in January. The middleweight division is stacked with talent and is one of the most competitive of all categories, but Baulding should not be overlooked -- he could spoil more than a few people's plans. 

James Puopolo

Ribeiro Jiu-Jitsu rep James Puopolo took silver at last year's Worlds after meeting undisputed ultra heavyweight king Marcus Buchecha in the finals. Puopolo is a big, technical man with a dangerous leg lock game. He has an incredibly tough bracket though, with some of the biggest (literally) and best athletes in the sport, but he is the lone American representative among a sea of international competitors.

Tanner Rice

One of the best American competitors of the current generation of athletes, Rice made it to the finals of the heavyweight division at Euros and Pans this year. He's one of four Americans in the division, but if he maintains this level of performance then he is possibly the best American hope for a medal in the heavyweight division.

Shane Jamil-Hill Taylor

Featherweight up-and-comer Shane Jamil-Hill Taylor of Team Lloyd Irvin turned heads with his impressive performance at Pans and proved he belongs in the upper echelons of the division by beating Gianni Grippo and going toe-to-toe with veteran Osvaldo 'Queixinho'. Featherweight is one of the most competitive divisions in the entire tournament and a podium finish for Hill would be an impressive feat.

Danielle Alvarez

A new arrival to the black belt division, Alvarez is the newest Gracie Humaita black athlete to enter the female black belt lightweight division. On the other side of the bracket from defending champion Beatriz Mesquita, Alvarez has tough opponents including Luiza Monteiro and Tammi Musumeci to get though to make it to the finals. As a debuting black belt though, she has nothing to lose.

Isaac Doederlein

Light featherweight is one of the few black belt divisions where there is no clear favorite to win and around 5-6 very tough athletes with a legit chance of taking gold. One of those is American athlete Isaac Doederlein, a black belt under Cobrinha and representing Alliance. He holds wins over major names such as Ary Farias and Michael Musumeci, although the competitive nature of the bracket means it's nearly impossible to predict how the podium will look.

Watch the IBJJF 2017 World Championships LIVE or On Demand ONLY on FloGrappling!

How to Watch IBJJF 2017 Worlds 

On TV: Now available on Roku and Apple TV 4 -- download the FloSports app today.
STREAMING: Available only on FloGrappling via monthly or yearly memberships. A yearly FloPRO subscription provides access to ALL FloSports sites. SIGN UP HERE

Join The Conversation On Social
• Follow us on Twitter @FloGrappling
• Follow us on Instagram @FloGrappling
• Follow us on Facebook

FloGrappling's hottest content, delivered to your inbox
Don't miss breaking news, feature stories, event updates, and more. Sign up for the FloGrappling mailing list today.

10th Planet Wins Big At SUBVERSIV

SUBVERSIV was an event met with high expectations and rapt anticipation from jiu-jitsu fans. It boasted a new format with a simple goal: find the best team in grappling by pitting the best of the squad against each other in submission only matches.

Quick News & Key Results From Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Los Angeles

The Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Los Angeles featured a ton of upsets and unexpected results as favorites fell. Here's a quick recap of the major results from the day and an explanation of what went down. 

11 Explosive First Round Matches At Abu Dhabi Grand Slam LA

With seven mats and hundreds of highly-motivated competitors, the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Los Angeles is set to be one of the most interesting events of the season. 

Subversiv: 5x5 Team Jiu-Jitsu Warfare

SUBVERSIV Produced By Fight 2 Win will take place on September 22 in Anaheim, California, and will bring a new concept of pro grappling competition to the SoCal scene.

The Disruptors & Dark Horses at Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Los Angeles

There's something about UAEJJF tournaments that seems to deliver shock results. Maybe it's the shorter matches, maybe it's something else. But whatever it is, we're nearly always sure to see some upsets. 

10th Planet To Roll Deep on Home Turf for Subversiv Prelims

Subversiv is looking to change the game with their team's based submission-only event, but the event's undercard promises to deliver more of the same action you've come to love from Fight 2 Win with 13 submission-only super fights.

King of Mats LA: The Ultra-Competitive 10-Man Tournament Not To Miss

King of Mats Los Angeles is Coming

The Abu Dhabi King of Mats Los Angeles will bring together 10 top heavyweight black belts with the overall winner challenging reigning champion Alexander Trans for the heavyweight title. 

Key Black Belts To Watch At The ADGS Los Angeles

The 2018 Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Los Angeles presents fans with one of the best-attended events in North America, and athletes from around the world will once again converge on the L.A. convention center in search of ranking points, cash prizes, and the glory of victory. 

5 Unmissable Black Belt Newcomers at Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Los Angeles

The UAEJJF Abu Dhabi World Jiu-Jitsu Tour rolls on this weekend with the ADGS Los Angeles. It’s not merely a crucial staging area for the UAEJJF’s season rankings, but also a turning point for the state of competition in jiu-jitsu. 

Our Favorite Black Belt Submissions from 2018 IBJJF No-Gi Pans

10th Planet Black Belt Jeremiah Vance Hits Nasty Armlock!

We saw a little bit of everything at the recent IBJJF Pan No-Gi. There were many impressive chokes, armlocks and leglocks and it was hard to distill the array of finishes we saw into a manageable list, but here are some of my favorite black belt submissions. Watch and enjoy.