FloGrappling Official No-Gi Worlds Purple Belt Preview

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On December 12th through 15th the IBJJF will be hosting their 12th edition of the World Jiu-Jitsu Nogi Championship at the Anaheim Convention Center. The purple belt divisions are filled with talent, some of the sport's best prospects have registered, and it should be an exciting weekend in Anaheim.

There are 386 total purple belts registered in the adult division; 299 of those are male, with another 87 female. The largest purple belt division is male lightweight with 63 athletes.

We have already previewed the black belt divisions here, and also the brown belt divisions here.

The brackets will be released by the IBJJF on Wednesday, December 11th.

Male Divisions-

Rooster

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: None

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: First John Lima (Cicero Costha)

Eric Naples (Robson Moura) First 2019 No-Gi Pans

John Lima (Cicero Costha) Third 2019 No-Gi Euros

Reiter Silva (Cassao) First 2019 No-Gi Brasileiro

One returning medalist from last year at roosterweight is blue belt champ John Lima. Lima finished third this year at No-Gi Euros.

Two of this year's major winners are registered,  No-Gi Pan champ Eric Naples and No-Gi Brasileiro champ Reiter Silva.

Robert Vu (De Been Jiu Jitsu) has made the final here before, in 2018 finishing second at blue belt.


Light-Feather

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: None

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: First Robin Bohlin (Atos) 

Dylan Martin (BJJ Revolution) Second 2019 No-Gi Pans

Robin Bohlin (Atos/AOJ) Third 2019 No-Gi Pans

Incoming purple belt from AOJ Robin Bohlin won No-Gi Worlds at blue belt a year ago. He went down in the semis at No-Gi Pans to Rico Staton, who is not registered for No-Gi Worlds.

Thirty athletes total at light-feather. Dylan Martin finished second at No-Gi Pans and should be considered one of the favorites here.


Feather

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: Third Alika Villiatora (Vbros)

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: Third Jorgji Qiro (Atos)

Igor Firmino (BTT) Third 2019 No-Gi Pans

Richard Bukovcsan (ECJJA) Third 2019 No-Gi Euros

Two returning bronze medalists from last year are Alika Villiatora at purple and Jorgji Qiro coming up from blue. 

Two more bronze medalists from majors this year are competing, Igor Firmino from No-Gi Pans and Richard Bukovcsan from No-Gi Euros.

Both Sathya Wiltse (Pedigo) and Rohan Patel (Brasa CTA) have won No-Gi Worlds at blue belt and are names to look out for at this weight.

A lot of big names in this 52-athlete division. Demian Balderrama (Atos), Daniel Sathler (Atos), Matheus Queiroz (Carlson Gracie), and Michael Alvarez (Checkmat) should all contend for the title.


Light

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: Third Oscar De Los Santos (Brasa CTA)

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: First Mario Fuentes (Fight Sports)

Dante Muschamp (Atos) Third 2019 No-Gi Pans

Anthony Ortiz (Unity) Third 2019 No-Gi Euros

One returning medalist in this massive 63-athlete division, bronze medalist Oscar De Los Santos. Mario Fuentes is an incoming No-Gi World champ from blue belt.

Two bronze medalists from No-Gi majors are registered, Dante Muschamp from No-Gi Pans and Anthony Ortiz from No-Gi Euros.

Rafael Silveira (Atos) is the top-ranked purple belt lightweight in the gi and should be one of the favorites for the world title.


Middle

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: Third Felipe Porto (Fight Sports)

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: None

Pierre Olivier-Leclerc (Tri Star) First 2019 No-Gi Pans and Second 2019 No-Gi Euros

Felipe Porto (Fight Sports) Second 2019 No-Gi Pans

Brian Radtke (Fight Sports) Third 2019 No-Gi Pans

Byung Ju Lee (Team Lloyd Irvin) Third 2019 No-Gi Pans

Nikodem Janik (Checkmat) Third 2019 No-Gi Euros

52 athletes registered at middleweight, including returning bronze medalist Felipe Porto

Pierre Oliveir-Leclerc defeated Porto in this year's No-Gi Pans final.

Even with all the medalists at IBJJF majors in this weight, William Tackett (Checkmat) has to be considered the favorite here and one of the contenders for the open class. Tackett is currently ranked 10th at 77kg in our No-Gi rankings.


Medium-Heavy

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: Third Nathan Haddad (R1NG)

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: None

Paulo Merlin (Gracie Barra) First 2019 No-Gi Pans

Arthur Mariath (Atos) Third 2019 No-Gi Pans

Thirty-nine athletes registered at medium-heavyweight. Nathan Haddad is a returning bronze medalist; he also finished third at No-Gi Pans and second in the open class.

Mateus Rodrigues (Atos) from AOJ has to be considered one of the favorites, along with No-Gi Pans champ Paulo Merlin.


Heavy

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: None

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: Steffen Banta (Soul Fighters) First Medium-Heavy, Jacob Couch (Killer Bees) First Heavy

Dante Cano (Alliance) First weight and open class 2019 No-Gi Pans

Jacob Couch (Killer Bees) Second 2019 No-Gi Pans

Borys Borysenko (Intelligent Team) Third 2019 No-Gi Euros

Caio Santos (Gracie Barra) First Super-Heavy 2019 No-Gi Brasileiro

Really crazy weight here, as 24 athletes registered at heavy. One of the most interesting names registered is three-time NCAA champ wrestler and Bellator MMA fighter Ed Ruth (AEG).

There are two incoming blue belt No-Gi World champs are in this bracket, Steffen Banta and Jacob Couch.

Dante Cano won both his weight and the open class at No-Gi Pans.

Watch: Dante Cano Wins No-Gi Pans Open Class


Super-Heavy

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: None

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: First Scott Carpenter (De Been)

Calvin Tacey (OCBJJ) Second 2019 No-Gi Pans

Twenty-one athletes at super-heavyweight. The only athlete returning from the podium is blue belt world champ Scott Carpenter (De Been). 

Javier Zaruski (Atos), Marcos Carrozino (GF Team) and Amr Ghoneim (Joslin’s MMA) are elite purple belts to look out for in Anaheim. 


Ultra-Heavy

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: None

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: None

Walker Madden (Colorado) First 2019 No-Gi Pans

No-Gi Pans champ Walker Madden should be one of the favorites here. William Maciel (Cicero Costha) should challenge him at ultra-heavyweight.


Female Divisions-

Rooster

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: Second Yesenya Villafuerte (Lotus Club), Third Sophia Lee (Gracie Barra) 

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: First Mary Moreno (Riis Rosenberg)

Julia Balmante (Alliance) Second 2019 No-Gi Pans

Lots of talent in the female roosterweight division. Two returning medalists at purple in Yesenya Villafuerte and Sophia Lee, plus blue belt No-Gi World champ Mary Moreno.


Light-Feather

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: Third Sarah Takushi (ATT)

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: None

Sarah Takushi is the only athlete returning who made the podium at light-feather, but Jhenifer Aquino (Atos) should contend as well.

Feather

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: None

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: Madison Wolfe (Soul Fighters) First Light-Feather

Roya Darvishian (Team Lloyd Irvin) First 2019 No-Gi Pans

Brenda Wunner (Atos) Third 2019 No-Gi Pans

Seventeen athletes registered at featherweight. Madison Wolfe is an incoming world champ from blue belt.

Current No-Gi Pans champ Roya Darvishian is another athlete to watch here, as well as Martiece Thompson (Gracie Humaita).


Light

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: None

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: Emily Pakulski (Unity)

Brianna Ste-Marie (BTT) First weight and open class 2019 No-Gi Pans

Emily Pakulski (Unity) First blue belt No-Gi Pans

Brianna Ste-Marie put in an incredible No-Gi Pans, winning her weight and submitting all opponents in the open class on her way to double gold.

Emily Pakulski was recently promoted to purple belt; she won No-Gi Worlds in 2018 and 2019 No-Gi Pans at blue belt.

Watch: Brianna Ste-Marie On Her No-Gi pans Double Gold


Middle

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: Third Janine Mutton (Cicero Costha)

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: First Alanis Betancourt (Unity), Second Emily Eyles (Brasa CTA)

Alanis Betancourt (Unity) First 2019 No-Gi Euros

Alanis Betancourt won No-Gi Worlds a year ago at blue and has already won No-Gi Euros at purple.


Medium-Heavy

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: None

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: None

Thirteen athletes at medium-heavyweight, this weight should be up for grabs with no returning medalists.


Heavy

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: Third Rachel Allar (Brazil 021) 

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: None

Maria Ruffatto (BTT) First 2019 No-Gi Pans

Kayla Dehm (Lloyd Irvin) Second 2019 No-Gi Pans

One returning medalist in Rachel Allar, along with both No-Gi Pans finalists in Maria Ruffatto and Kayla Dehm.


Super-Heavy

Returning 2018 Purple Belt Medalists: Second Sa’idah Durkee (Lloyd Irvin)

Incoming 2018 Blue Belt Medalists: First heavy Roberta Ribeiro (Double Five)

Hannah Mccourt (BJJ Globetrotters) Second No-Gi Euros

Sa’idah Durkee is a returning bronze medalist from purple, and should have tough competition from blue belt No-Gi World champ Roberta Ribeiro.


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