Throughout the history of Brazilian jiu-jitsu competitions, rivalries fueled some of the most anticipated and exciting matchups. Some have been friendly, some…not so much. But they always intrigued the diehard fans of the sport. Matches like Bustamante X Gurgel, Shaolin X Leozinho, Terere X Pe De Pano to name a few.
Featherweight rivals Rubens Cobrinha Charles and Rafael Mendes are now the two fighters making headlines and once again writing the pages in jiu-jitsu history.
The two have fought each other 7 times thus far, and now might do it again sooner than we think. Recently, Graciemag.com reported that an Atlanta based sponsor was interested in seeing a no time limit, winner take all matchup. And, put the purse of ten thousand dollars for the winner. Both parties have declared interest in competing, however the match is still not finalized.
Either way, the idea is verrrrrrrrry interesting, and to possibly see these two compete in this format would be epic. So, to help with predictions of this matchup, let’s take a look at the history of the rivalry and encounters between the two best featherweights in Jiu-jitsu today.
Match #1-Capital Challenge (Jordan) December 2008
Rafael Mendes and Cobrinha meet for the first time, in the finals of the -70K division. Cobrinha wins over Rafael Mendes by guard pass near the end of the time limit.
Final Score: Cobrinha 3×0 Rafael
Match#2 – Pan Jiu-jitsu Championship 2009-(Carson, California. USA) March 2009
Rafael gets dq’ed for lacing his leg around Cobrinhas knee!
Final Score: Cobrinha wins via DQ
Match#3 – Abu Dhabi Pro World Cup (Abu Dhabi, UAE) May 2009
In a back and forth battle of sweep after sweep, Rafael beats Cobrinha for the first time.
Final Score: Rafael 4 x 2 Cobrinha
Match #4 – World Jiu-jitsu Championships (Mundials) 2009 (Long Beach, California. USA) June 2009
In the semi finals of the division, once again a back and forth battle but Cobrinha gets the judges decision from a tied match.
Final Score: 4×4 and one advantage each. Judges declare Cobrinha the winner.
Match#5 – ADCC 2009-(Barcelona, Spain) October 2009
After going to double overtime, with the score tied 4×4, Rafael gets Cobrinhas back with hooks to secure the points and win at the final moments of the match.
Final Score: Rafael 7×4 Rafael
Match#6 – Brasilero 2010 (Tijuca,Rio De Janeiro. Brazil) May 2010
Once again a tough battle of 50/50 guard from both athletes, as well as footlock attempts, but Rafael wins again.
Final Score: Rafael 4 X 2 Cobrinha
Match#7 – World Jiu-jitsu Championship (Mundials) 2010 (Long Beach, California. USA) June 2010
The last match of the rivalry saw a back and forth battle of sweeps and leg/foot locks. In the end, Rafael wins via 2 advantages.
Final Score: Rafael 4-4 Cobrinha (5-3 advantages).
Match#8 – Superfight (Atlanta,Georgia. USA) Date TBA
Final Score: ??????????