Manny Diaz: “Competing In Copa Podio Was An Unforgettable Experience Of A Lifetime.”



Manuel “Beats” Diaz, or Manny to his friends is a multiple time World and Pan American Champion. Manny is a brown belt under Caio Terra who received his most recent belt rank on the podium of the 2012 World Championship at the hands of Caio. The Bay Area native has only been training since 2008 but already accumulated World and Pan American titles as well as a spot at the 2012 Abu Dhabi WPJJC after winning double gold at a trial event. He talked about his experience competing at Copa Podio last weekend. As psoted on his facebook:

“This past two weeks have been a dream come true. I could of never accomplished this dream without the help of my teammates, my instructors (Caio Terra BJJ), my friends, my family and especially my wife. I am truly humbled and thankful for all the support.

At the Copa Podio, I had four very tough matches against some of the best in the world. My first match was against black belt and 2012 Brown Belt Absolute World Champion Paulo Miyao in which I lost a close match due to his unbelievable will to not tap to a knee bar. Following my first tough match, I went up against Judo Olympian Travis Stevens which I lost by one advantage from his attempt on a foot lock. After the two tough losses, I was able to regroup. My third match was against black belt Renato Cardoso from Checkmat. During this match I was able to establish my game and control the fight. I ended up winning by points and earned my first victory on the mats. The final match of the Grand Prix was against GFT’s black belt Jaime Canuto. During this match I had to find a way to submit him in order to get a chance to advance to the semi finals. Fortunately, I was able to establish my game and attack his arm for a submission which gave me enough points to advance. However, since Travis and I had tied with 7 total points he was the one to advance since he edged out the victory earlier.

Nonetheless, this was an unforgettable experience of a lifetime. I learned a lot about my game from my mistakes and will continue to work hard. I am happy for everything but yet I am not satisfied. I want to send a special thanks out to Caio Terra and my CTBJJA team, Leandro Lo, Luiza Monteiro, Cicero Costha BJJ team, Diogo “Moreno” Sampaio, the Soul Fighters BJJ and 31Fifty for helping me on the road to the Copa Podio.”