From the 20th to the 24th of March at the University California Irvine. The Pan is the biggest BJJ competition of the year (in terms of number of participants). You can follow it by live streaming on Budovideos.com and also we at BJJ Eastern Europe will do a LIVE PLAY BY PLAY on Saturday and Sunday. This Pan will be the first time ever that there will be random drug testing at the black belt level and rumor has it that a big announcement will happen during the Pan. This announcement will apparently change Jiu-Jitsu for the better!
Athlete list: https://www.ibjjfdb.com/CampeonatoInscricao/PorCategoriaETimePdf?CampeonatoId=162
*** Black Adult Masculino – Galo / Rooster-weight / under 58,3kg ***
Reigning Champion: Caio Terra (2012)
Contenders: Brandon Mullins, Koji Shibamoto, Levy Jackson, Jordy Peute, Takahito Yoshioka, Bruno da Silva Malfacine, Fabbio Passos de Alencar, Caio Terra, Felipe Costa
What might happen: This looks like a rematch between Caio Terra and his arch nemeses Bruno Malfacine. The advantage goes to Caio Terra who has been very active in recent competitions. Malfa has been coming back from an injury. Their last encounter was very close with Malfa edging out a win by decision. Watch out for a surprise Japanese start Koji Shibamoto who has taken silver at the Euros and Worlds. Caio takes the gold over Malfacine.
*** Pluma / Light Featherweight / under 64,3kg ***
Reigning Champion: Bruno Malfacine (2012)
Contenders: Guilherme Mendes, Laercio Fernandes, Carlos Holanda, Gustavo Carpio, Gabriel Willcox and Paulo Mello
What might happen: Guilherme Mendes looks like the heavy favorite here. He and his brother seem to be almost unbeatable at the moment. A three-time world champion, he is the the top dof at light feather. Laercio Fernandes, Gustavo Carpio, Gabriel Willcox and Paulo Mello will fight for the other spot in the final. Gui Mendes takes the gold beating Laercio Fernandes.
*** Pena / Featherweight / under 70,3 kg ***
Reigning Champion: Rafael Mendes (2012)
Contenders: Rafael Mendes, Rubens Cobrinha, Augusto Tanquinho, Mario Reis, Isaque Paiva, Eduardo Ramos, Daisuke Nakamura.
What might happen: This division is stacked with the usual suspects.We should see at Rubens Cobrinha vs. Augusto Tanquinho and Rafael Mendes vs. Mario Reis semi finals. Tanquinho-Cobrinha will be very close while Rafa vs Mario Reis should be easier for Rafa. Tanquinho has been more active than Cobrinha and I see him taking this against Cobrinha and facing Rafa in the final. Rafa takes it by a close margin against Tanquinho.
*** Leve / Lightweight / under 76,3kg ***
Reigning Champion: Leando Lo (2012)
Contenders: Michael Langhi, Lucas Lepri, Zach Maxwell, Tanner Rice, Oliver Geddes, Jt Torres, Vinicius Marinho
What might happen: Last year’s champ Leandro Lo will fight as a middleweight. This means that there’s a big possibility of seeing Alliance close out with Langhi and Lucas Lepri. JT Torres who is now under Atos will create an upset and should beat Langhi in a very close fight in the semis and should take the gold beating Lucas Lepri in the finals, getting his first medal for Atos.
*** Medio / Middleweight / under 82,3kg ***
Reigning Champion: Claudio Calasans (2012)
Contenders: This is for sure the most stacked division. There will be beasts like Otavio Sousa, Clark Gracie, DJ Jackson, Magid Hage IV. Leandro Lo, Sean Roberts, Lucas Rocha, Kayron Gracie.
What might happen: The big name name missing is 2013 Euro and 2012 champ Claudio Calasans. The exciting Kron Gracie will also be missing, but 2012 world champ Otavio Sousa is here. I feel an upset is probable with Dj Jackson beating Otavio in the semis. The other semi should be Leandro Lo vs Kayron. Both have similar games but Lo is on fire at the moment and should come out on top and beat DJ Jackson in the finals.
*** Meio-Pesado / Middle-Heavyweight / under 88,3kg ***
Reigning Champion: Kayron Gracie (2012)
Contenders: Romulo Barral, Andre Galvao, Renato Cardoso, Felipe Preguica Pena, Tarsis Humphreys, Rodrigo Fajardo, Guto Campos.
What might happen: Even though there some big names here, the two biggest names that stick out Romulo Barral and Andre Galvão. The surprise could come from another rookie in checkmat’s Renato Cardoso so watch out for him…Barral will have tough matches to the final probably facing Guto Campos and Ricardo Bastos . Galvão will face the rookie Felipe Pena and the returning world champ Tarsis Humphreys. Galvao vs Barral would be a rematch of last december’s IBJJ pro league that Barral won by referee’s decision. Galvao will take this one in a very contested final.
*** Pesado / Heavyweight / under 94,3 kgs***
Reigning Champion: Lucas Leite (2012)
Contenders: Rodolfo Vieira and Xande Ribeiro are not there which means that anything is possible. The favorites will be Nivaldo Oliveira, Roberto Tussa Alencar, Lucas Leite and Tarcisio Jardim. This will probably end in a Nivaldo Oliveira vs Lucas Leite closeout final for Checkmat.
*** Super-Pesado / Super-Heavyweight / under 100,3 kg ***
Reigning Champion: Bernardo Faria (2012)
Contenders: Bernardo Faria, Leo Nogueira, Gabriel Vella
What might happen: This division seems headed for a all Alliance final with Leo Nogueira and Bernardo Faria. The big name missing is Antonio Carlos aka Cara de Sapato who took silver last year. The big news is Gabriel Vella’s return at a lighter weight class than usual. Alliance close out.
*** Pesadissimo / Ultra-Heavyweight / over 100,3kg ***
Reigning Champion: Marcus Buchecha (2012)
Contenders: Marcus Buchecha Almeida, Alexander Trans, Roberto Cybor Abreu
What might happen: The current double world champ Marcus Buchecha seems very hard to beat at the moment. Alexander Trans had a close match with him at last year’s Pan final. Trans will be riding on his gold and bronze at Europeans. Another contender is the always dangerous Roberto Cyborg but he always seems undersized for Ultra heavy. Alexander Trans should beat Roberto Cyborg and face Marcus Almeida in the final. Buchecha will take the Gold once again.
*** Absolute ***
Reigning Champion: (2012) Antonio Carlos and Marcus Buchecha(Checkmat)
Contenders: Marcus Buchecha, Leo Nogueira, Bernardo Faria, Romulo Barral, Alexander Trans, Andre Galvao.
What might happen: Hard to bet against Buchecha but anything can happen
Brown belt adult:
Rooster: Darson Hemmings
L Feather: João Miyao
Feather: Paulo Miyao
Light: Francisco Antonio Iturralde
Middle: Julian Marquez
M Heavy: Keenan Cornelius
Heavy: Roberto Torralbas
S Heavy: Ricardo Ribeiro
U Heavy: Thomas McMahon