Alex Pereira, the new champion of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, has been awarded the rank of brown belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu even though he has never submitted an opponent in a mixed martial arts competition.
According to social media journalist Ariel Helwani, UFC middleweight champion and Brazilian striker Alex Pereira just received his brown belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Pereira is also the current champion of the UFC middleweight division.
Helwani has written: Alex Pereira, the newly crowned champion of the middleweight division of the UFC, earned his brown belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu from Plinio Cruz, his trainer, last night.
Pereira won the middleweight championship of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) with a fifth-round technical knockout victory against Israel Adesanya of New Zealand at the UFC 281 competition, which took place in New York, United States of America.
He had previously participated in BJJ in the past back in Brazil, and he had displayed strong Jiu-Jitsu in his bout with Adesanya, with his securing of a takedown and a sweep, the teacher lauded Pereira's Jiu-Jitsu, noting that he had already competed in BJJ in the past back in Brazil.
Additionally, he demonstrated the most important aspect of Jiu-Jitsu in his opinion, which is the ability to survive.
After the news broke, a lot of UFC fans were very critical of Alex Pereira for losing the fight on the ground to Israel Adesanya, who has a purple belt in BJJ. The fight took place at UFC 281.
The Brazilian kickboxer has only competed in eight professional MMA bouts, but he has won none of them through submission. His only defeat in mixed martial arts took place by submission.
Islam Makhachev, the former lightweight champion of the UFC, has been quoted as saying that the organization is full of people who have bogus BJJ black belts.
While discussing Dustin Poirier's ground game, he made the following statement: “Black belt, who give him that? We have to check that now. And we have to cancel, brother, many black belt because they make the jiu-jitsu look bad because a lot of guys have black belt but I don’t know.”
What Are Your Thoughts?
Many people believe that Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is only about submission, but in reality, it is much more than that. It involves a lot of other skills such as positioning, using leverage to one’s advantage, understanding the guard and how to use it to your benefit, and so much more.
In the case of Alex Pereira, he may not have won by submission but it doesn’t mean he isn’t a skilled BJJ practitioner. He has shown that he can defend himself on the ground and make strategic choices to advance his position to survive and win fights. This is what Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is all about.
However, the debate still rages on in the world of mixed martial arts. Some people, including Islam Makhachev, feel that there are too many fake BJJ black belts and it makes the sport look bad. Others disagree with this sentiment, arguing that BJJ is about more than just submitting an opponent.
The truth is the mats don't lie. Even without a submission win, grappling skills can be felt and seen in the octagon, and these skills are rewarded accordingly. It's up to you to decide what your opinion is on the matter. What do you think? Is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu only about submission or is it much more than that? Let us know in the comments below!