Tarsis on the back of Murilo Santana. Photo: Carlos Ozório

Alliance had already set down roots in Florida, with the academies of Felipe Zicro in Tallahassee and Henrique “Piui” Rezende in Pembroke Pines.

Now, the team reaches Miami with a world champion at the helm. Tarsis Humphreys made the move from São Paulo and begins work that will, as he himself guarantees, will go a long way.

“I’m living here in Miami and getting started at work. I only have 20 students in two academies, as I’m only just beginning to advertise my new home at this instant, on,” he says in amusement.

“Everything is still just crawling, but I feel it will all work out. I chose to come here and I like it a lot. I’m already starting to feel at home, since it’s really hot and the people here are cool too. Plus there’s the advantage of having a beach, which I didn’t have in São Paulo!” he says.

“The only problem is that I miss my family, friends and the training partners I had in São Paulo. But I should go train there when the championships near, or I’ll go to Atlanta with Jacaré and Cobrinha, or New York with Lucas Lepri, or even to California with Franjinha, a bit further away. If I get organized, there’ll be no lack of tough training. There’s no way you can train lone-wolf style and win everything. I think only Roger Gracie can get away with that. But I can try too! (laughs).”

Tarsis makes the most of the opportunity to plug the addresses of his academies, and his new logo. “It’s an oak tree, my last name in the middle. That’s basically it: I’ve come to lay roots, balanced and unyielding,” he says in closing.