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Margarida, the Forgotten Champion

Have you ever seen the amusing video of a black belt explaining how jiujitsu movements equate to taking off tight clubbing jeans? Don’t worry, I won’t make you use Mr. Google:

Funny video, right? But today I was having a conversation with Jake Whitfield, who is a Royce Gracie black belt with a passion for jiujitsu history, and Jake mused that if you know the name Fernando “Margarida” Pontes these days, it might be because of this hilarious snippet. And that’s a crime.

(Full disclosure: a lot of the information in this post I got straight from Jake. So if you’re near Goldsboro, NC, go train with him, OK?)

Generations change. Some names remain prominent while others fade, and not always based on merit or accomplishment. On the basis of accomplishments alone, Margarida’s record speaks for itself. He was the first black belt to earn double gold at the worlds, and at that time was also the youngest absolute champion in history. BJJ Heroes calls him “one of the most accomplished and exciting fighters to have walked the Earth.”

Besides the gold medals, consider what Margarida’s aggressive, attacking style earned him.  For one thing — and think about how many times you’ll read the following words in this order — he submitted the legendary Fabio Gurgel:

He also tapped Marcio “Pe de pano” Cruz and Saulo Ribeiro, both in their respective primes.

If you’re part of the crowd that just wants to see highlights, don’t you worry: Margarida had an exciting and flashy game. Watch him stick his hand in the collar and make it a constant threat:

If technique’s more your thing, watch him teach the baseball choke here:

You can search YouTube and find full matches with Terere, Saulo, Xande, Roger and more that I haven’t linked here. It’s up to you to decide how to use your time.

But however you use it: don’t watch one amusing minute and think that’s all you need to see from one of the best ever.

 

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About Jeff

I write, work for social justice, listen to music and grapple. That's about it for now.

One response to “Margarida, the Forgotten Champion

  1. Pingback: September 2, 2015 - BJJ News

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