KASAI Super Series
On Saturday, February 2, 2019, The Bomb Factory in Dallas, Texas will host the first KASAI Super series event. This will be the first event KASAI have hosted a show outside of New York, and will feature a number of super fights in place of their regular tournaments.
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Main Event: Gordon Ryan versus Joao Gabriel Rocha
Headlining this event will be ADCC Champion and IBJJF No Gi Double Gold World Champion Gordon Ryan versus 2015 ADCC Silver Medalist and IBJJF Gi World Championships Silver Medalist, Joao Gabriel Rocha. In addition to this awesome clash of super heavyweights (up to 221 pounds), the other feature matches include:
- Gordon Ryan vs. Joao Gabriel Rocha
- Marcio Andre vs. Renato Canuto
- Dante Leon (replacing injured Vagner Rocha) vs. Matheus Lutes
- Tom DeBlass vs. Bruno Bastos
- Aaron “Tex” Johnson vs. Ricardo “Demente” Abreu
- Raquel Canuto vs. Chelsah Lyons
Renato Canuto versus Marcio Andre
Another great match up will be Renato Canuto against Marcio Andre. Renato, along with being an IBJJF World No Gi Champion (2017) and an IBJJF World Gi Silver Medalist (2018) is also Kasai's two weight division (lightweight and welterweight) champion. Andre is one of the top grapplers today, and is also an IBJJF World No-Gi Champion (2016), as well as an IBJJF World Gi Finalist (2016). He has also won three IBJJF European Championship gold medals.
Renato's wife, Raquel Canuto who is also an IBJJF World No Gi Champion, having also won in 2017, will also be competing on this card. She will be facing Marcelo Garcia of Dallas' Black Belt and multiple time IBJJF medalist, Chelsah Lyons.
Renato Canuto Biography
Renato Canuto was born on June 13, 1996 in Sao Vicente, Sao Paulo, Brazil. Renato's father, Valdir "Tio Chico" was also a great Brazilian Jiu Jitsu practitioner, and when he began teaching a children's BJJ class in 2004, Renato was his first student. Only after a few months of training, Renato competed in the state tournament (Campeonato Paulista)- and won the event. This encouraged Renato to train even harder, and he spent his spare time either training or travelling to tournaments to compete.
In 2016, Renato came to the United States to prepare for the IBJJF Pan American Championship (held in California), and worked with Robert Drysdale. He was so impressive, he was offered to stay in Las Vegas, and become one of the coaches at Drysdale's academy, which he happily accepted. Later that year, Renato's father travelled to the United States and awarded Renato his black belt in December 2016. In 2018, shortly before the IBJJF Pans, Renato, and his wife Raquel, who is also a IBJJF World No Gi Champion, left the Dysdale academy and announced they would join the Checkmat team.
Black Belt Main Achievements:
- IBJJF World No-Gi Champion (2017)
- KASAI Pro 150lbs Champion (2017)
- KASAI Pro 170lbs Champion (2018)
- USBJJF/IBJJF American Nationals Champion (2017)
- UAEJJF Abu Dhabi Grand Slam – Los Angeles Champion (2017)
- IBJJF World Championship 2nd Place (2018)
- Marianas Open 2nd Place (2018)
- IBJJF Pan American 3rd Place (2017)
- Marianas Open 3rd Place (2017)
Marcio Andre Biography
Marcio Andre was born on October 19, 1994 in Bangu, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He is considered one of the top featherweights competing in the IBJJF currently. In 2016, he was the IBJJF World Champion Gi Silver Medalist, and the Bronze Medalist in 2017 and 2018. Additionally, he won the IBJJF World Championships No Gi in 2016.
As a child, Marcio began training in the Nova Uniao - Bangu Academy, which was led by Fabio Andrade, and was a part of a social project to help children stay off the streets and prevent them from joining gangs. At this small academy, he trained alongside other great competitors such as 2018 World Champion Isaque Bahiense, among many others.
As a junior, Marcio won many major tournaments, including the CBJJ Brazilian Nationals (Brasileiro) and the Team Nationals (Brasileiro de Equipes) in 2010 and 2011. He was also a IBJJF Gi World Champion as a blue belt (2011), purple belt (2012 and 2013), and brown belt (2014). Upon winning the 2014 IBJJF Brown Belt World Championships, Marcio was promoted to black belt by Fabio Andrade. As a black belt, he has defeated many champions including Edwin Najmi, Paulo Miyao, and Gianni Grippo. Perhaps his greatest achievement yet was his 2016 IBJJF World Championship Gi run, where he narrowly lost to Rafael Mendes by an advantage (10 to 10 score) in the finals, after defeating Nicollas Welker by armbar, Bruno Frazatto by 9 to 6 points, and legend Rubens "Cobrinha" Charles in the semifinals by 7 to 6 points.
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Black Belt Main Achievements:
- IBJJF World No-Gi Champion (2016)
- IBJJF European Champion (2018/2016/2015)
- ACBJJ 7 LW Grand Prix No-Gi Champion (2017)
- UAEJJF World Pro Champion (2016)
- IBJJF World Championship 2nd Place (2016)
- IBJJF World No-Gi 2nd Place (2018)
- IBJJF Pan American 2nd Place (2017)
- ACBJJ LW Grand Prix 2nd Place (2017)
- IBJJF World Championship 3rd Place (2018/2017)
- IBJJF Pan American Championship 3rd Place (2016)
Kasai Elite Grappling Championships is a "premier competitive professional and amateur Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) promotion, committed to hosting live events featuring the most talented male and female grapplers from around the globe." This exciting promotion was founded in 2016 by various world famous names in the business and grappling world. Among the executive team are Rolles Gracie, Kasai's president, who is a fourth degree BJJ black belt, and son of legendary Rolls Gracie and Rich Byrne, Kasai's Chief Executive Officer, who is also the President of Benefit Street Partners and CEO of Business Development Corporation of America and Benefit Street Partners Realty Trust- and a black belt in BJJ as well. Rounding out the executive team are Ken Gelman, Kasai's Chief Operating Officer, who founded G-Funk Sports and Entertainment- with clients including NFL Digital Media, ESPN, National Hockey League, Warner Home Video, and more, and Kenny Florian, Erik Owings, and John Cholish- experts in the BJJ and grappling community.