10% Off For Winter Sale | Use Coupon: WINTER10

Your cart

Your cart is empty

Rodrigo Cavaca - 4th-Degree BJJ Black Belt

Rodrigo Cavaca - 4th-Degree BJJ Black Belt

1. Rodrigo Cavaca’s Details

Rodrigo Cavaca’s Details
Name Rodrigo Henriques Cavaca
Nickname N/A
Born Santos, São Paulo, Brazil
Date of Birth 27 January 1981
Nationality Brazilian
College/University N/A
Age 42 Years
Last Fight IBJJF World Championship 2019
Last Weigh In Super Heavyweight
Weight Class Super Heavyweight (100.5 Kg / 221.6 lbs)
Ultra Heavyweight
Weight 100.5 Kg / 221.6 lbs
Height N/A
Career Disclosed Earning N/A
Fighting out of Brazil
Foundational Style Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Favorite Technique Straight Ankle Lock
Rank 4th-Degree BJJ Black Belt
Awarded by Elcio Figueiredo
Head Coach Elcio Figueiredo
Lineage Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Carlson Gracie > Elcio Figueiredo > Rodrigo Cavaca
Team Association Cavaca Fight Team
Zenith BJJ
Facebook Logo Instagram Logo

2. Rodrigo Cavaca’s Biography

Rodrigo Cavaca is a 4th-degree BJJ black belt under Elcio Figueiredo. He is one of the top super heavyweight (pesadissimo) BJJ fighters of his generation. He has been added to the top BJJ coaches list since the day he started instructing BJJ techniques under the CheckMat banner. Rodrigo Cavaca is credited with the fame of the BJJ technique, straight ankle lock.

2.1. Rodrigo Cavaca’s Early Life

Rodrigo Cavaca was born on 27 January 1981 in Santos, São Paulo, Brazil.

2.2. Interested in Football

From a very young age, Rodrigo Cavaca was interested in football. He competed in the Futebol de Salão Club in Santos. He wanted to become a professional football player. He had friends with grappling backgrounds and many of them trained in BJJ, but Cavaca was only focused on football in his teenage life.

2.3. Persuaded to Practice BJJ By His Friends

When Cavaca turned 19, he decided to try BJJ as his friends always talked about BJJ. Most of his friends were blue belts in BJJ who persuaded Cavaca to join the combat sport. At first, Cavaca was hesitant but when he saw his friends grapple, he took an interest in the gentle art.

Eventually, Cavaca’s friends persuaded him and he joined a BJJ gym.

2.4. Joined Alliance Jiu-Jitsu

Rodrigo Cavaca joined a branched academy of Alliance Jiu-Jitsu in Santos. At the academy, Professor Sarruco was his first BJJ instructor. And then he enjoyed BJJ for the sake of its perks and benefits.

2.5. Integracao Jiu-Jitsu Team

Rodrigo Cavaca trained at Alliance Jiu-Jitsu for almost two years, and then he joined Team Integracao Jiu-Jitsu situated in Santos. The main reason was that his previous academy didn’t have many resources and opportunities while Cavaca wanted to explore more about BJJ. There Cavaca got to know about different BJJ personalities and also his instructor, Elcio Figueiredo, who would later award Cavaca with his black belt.

2.6. Role of Elcio Figueiredo in Cavaca’s Life

Elcio Figueiredo, a black belt under Carlson Gracie, was one of the instructors of the Team Integracao Jiu-Jitsu. It was Cavaca’s training under Elcio Figueiredo that he won the World Championship in 2008 after becoming a black belt. Elcio Figueiredo has a major role in making Rodrigo Cavaca one of the best black belts. And later, Rodrigo Cavaca was the one who gave the BJJ community world-class practitioners, such as Marcus Almeida Buchecha.

2.7. Aimed to Become a Professional Grappler

After winning World Championships such as the IBJJF Mundials, Rodrigo Cavaca decided to pursue BJJ professionally. Before that Cavaca wasn’t that serious about BJJ, but his exceptional fighting style granted him big victories which made him change his mind.

And it was Elcio Figueiredo who later awarded Rodrigo Cavaca with his black belt.

2.8. Joined the Brasa Team Under Leonardo Vieira

After becoming a black belt, Cavaca wanted to compete in the big championships. But the Team Integracao Jiu-Jitsu was too small for him. Cavaca felt that he wasn’t exposed to the potential BJJ tournaments and opportunities. With the aim of becoming a World Champion and topping the IBJJF charters, Cavaca joined the Brasa Team under Professor Leonardo Vieira.

Team Brasa was one of the best teams in Brazil led by none other than Professor Leonardo Vieira. Team Brasa had the world’s best grapplers, Andre Galvao, Demian Maia, Robert Drysdale, Lucas Leite, and many others. The academy was located in Sao Paulo but Cavaca was highly determined to become the best grappler. So he used to travel from Santos to Sao Paulo and train three times a week.

2.9. Left Brasa Team After the Formation of CheckMat Jiu-Jitsu

Rodrigo Cavaca represented the Brasa Team internationally for almost two years. In 2008, when Professor Leonardo Vieira decided to establish his own academy named CheckMat Jiu-Jitsu with his brothers, Ricardo and Leandro Vieira, Cavaca decided to follow his master.

3. Opened a CheckMat Affiliate Academy

After following Professor Leonardo Vieira, Rodrigo Cavaca opened his own CheckMat affiliate academy in Santos as previously it was in Sao Paulo. There Cavaca helped practitioners who had a little exposure to the gentle art. Practitioners benefitted from this decision of Cavaca and many practitioners enrolled in the academy.

4. Co-Founder of Zenith BJJ

In 2013, Rodrigo Cavaca decided to open his academy. Then in October 2013, Rodrigo Cavaca left CheckMat Jiu-Jitsu and founded his academy, Zenith BJJ,  with a jiu-jitsu fellow, Robert Drysdale.

5. Rodrigo Cavaca Instructionals

Rodrigo Cavaca has formulated BJJ instructional videos that practitioners all over the world can access and learn BJJ techniques. The video “Wiseman BJJ” contains excessive information about footlockers, closed guard attacks and how to stop the guard, taught by the legendary Rodrigo Cavaca. The “Triangle Masterclass” instructs BJJ submissions, especially the triangle choke.

6. Rodrigo Cavaca’s BJJ Combats

6.1. Promoted to Blue Belt

Rodrigo Cavaca was promoted to blue belt by Sarruco, Cavaca’s very first BJJ instructor.

6.2. Brazilian National Champion

Cavaca became the Brazilian National Champion twice as a purple and brown belt.

6.3. Mundial Champion

Cavaca secured his position at the IBJJF Mundial Championship twice, first as a purple and second as a brown Belt.

6.4. Promoted to Black Belt

Rodrigo Cavaca was promoted to black belt by Elcio Figueiredo on 28 October 2005.

6.5. IBJJF European Champion

Rodrigo Cavaca won the first position at the IBJJF European Championship in 2009 and 2010 as a black belt.

6.6. IBJJF World Champion

Cavaca became the IBJJF World Champion in 2010 as a black belt.

7. Rodrigo Cavaca’s Famous Students

7.1. Marcus Almeida Buchecha

Marcus Almeida Buchecha is a 2nd-degree BJJ black belt under Rodrigo Cavaca. Though he represents the CheckMat BJJ, his training went all under Rodrigo Cavaca. Marcus Almeida Buchecha is a 13 times World Champion. He has won many IBJJF Championships and now is competing in ONE Championship. Marcus Almeida Buchecha was inducted into the IBJJF Hall of Fame in 2014.

Year Event Position
2019 IBJJF World Championship 1st
2018 IBJJF World Championship 1st
2017 IBJJF World Championship 1st
2016 IBJJF World Championship 1st
2016 IBJJF Pro League Grand Prix 1st
2015 UAEJJF Abu Dhabi Pro 1st
2014 IBJJF World Championship 1st
2014 UAEJJF Abu Dhabi Pro 1st
2017 ADCC Championship 1st
2013 ADCC Championship 1st
2011 IBJJF World Championship No-Gi 1st
2010 IBJJF World Championship No-Gi 1st

7.2. Michelle Nicolini

Michelle Nicolini is a 3rd-degree BJJ black belt under Robert Drysdale. She is an IBJJF Hall of Famer. Representing CheckMat Jiu-Jitsu, Nicolini has trained extensively under Rodrigo Cavaca.

Year Event Position
2017 ADCC World Championship 1st
2015 ADCC World Championship 1st
2014 Euros Championship 1st
2013 ADCC World Championship 1st
2013 ADCC South American Championship 1st
2011 ADCC World Championship 1st
2011 Brazilian National Championship 1st
2008 Pan American Championship 1st
2010 IBJJF World No-Gi Championship 1st
2008 IBJJF World No-Gi Championship 1st

8. Rodrigo Cavaca’s Historic Fights

8.1. Rodrigo Cavaca Vs. Roberto Cyborg Abreu

Video Credit: @IBJJF

Roberto Cyborg Abreu is a 4th-degree BJJ black belt under Francisco “Toco” Albuquerque. Cavaca built strong grips on Cyborg’s Gi to prevent him from taking the dominant position. The sleeve and pants grip led Cyborg to the submission that he ultimately lost the match. Cavaca came on top of Cyborg via the guard sweep and caught his leg. Cavaca locked Cyborg’s legs and submitted him via Botinha within four minutes.

Year Event Opponent W/L/D Method Stage Weight Class Location
2010 IBJJF World Championship Roberto Cyborg Abreu Win Submission By Botinha Final Ultra Heavyweight Long Beach, California

8.2. Rodrigo Cavaca Vs. Antonio Peinado

Video Credit: @IBJJF

Antonio Peinado is a BJJ black belt under Master Fabio Gurgel. The fight between the World Champions started aggressively and Peinado was the one who got the dominant position as he got on top of Cavaca in the very start. Cavaca is a fast paced grappler but Peinado wasn't slow. Leg locks being the favorite technique of Cavaca, he restricted Peinado’s leg and shot for the sleeve grip. Peinado tried to free his leg but Cavaca was successful in applying the submission. Rodrigo Cavaca submitted Antonio Peinado via Botinha within 6 minutes and won the semi final at the 2010 IBJJF World Championship.

Year Event Opponent W/L/D Method Stage Weight Class Location
2010 IBJJF World Championship Antonio Peinado Win Submission By Botinha Semi Final Ultra Heavyweight Long Beach, California

8.3. Rodrigo Cavaca Vs. Marcio Cruz

Video Credit: @IBJJF

Marcio Cruz is a 5th-degree BJJ black belt under Carlos Gracie Junior. Cavaca, known for his fast and aggressive fighting style, attacked Cruz and developed strong grips around his Gi. He then went straight for the triangle choke and secured the submission within 2 minutes in the match.

Year Event Opponent W/L/D Method Stage Weight Class Location
2010 IBJJF World Championship Marcio Cruz Win Submission By Triangle Choke Quarter Final Ultra Heavyweight Long Beach, California

9. Rodrigo Cavaca’s Main Achievements

Year Event Weight Class Position
2010 IBJJF World Championship Ultra Heavyweight 1st
2009 IBJJF European Championship Ultra Heavyweight 1st
2010 IBJJF European Championship Ultra Heavyweight 1st
2008 CBJJ Brazilian National Championship Ultra Heavyweight 1st
2010 CBJJ Brazilian National Championship Ultra Heavyweight 1st
2009 IBJJF World Championship Runner-up Ultra Heavyweight 1st
2009 IBJJF Pan American Championship Runner-up Ultra Heavyweight 1st
2017 IBJJF Pan American Championship Runner-up Ultra Heavyweight 1st
2008 IBJJF Pan American Championship Ultra Heavyweight 3rd
2010 IBJJF Pan American Championship Ultra Heavyweight 3rd

10. Rodrigo Cavaca’s BJJ Professional Record Breakdown

92 Matches 53 Wins 38 Losses
By Submissions 25 12
By Points 19 20
By Advantages 5 5
By Decision 2 1
By Penalties 0 0
By DQ 2 0
Draws 1

10.1. Submission W/L Methods

Submission Method 25 Wins 12 Losses
Triangle 7 2
Submission 4 1
Heel Hook 2 1
Footlock 1 0
Bow and Arrow 1 0
Botinha 5 0
Choke from Back 2 4
Wristlock 1 0
Gogoplata 1 0
Omoplata 1 0
Armbar 0 2
Cross Choke 0 1
Toe Hold 0 1

11. Rodrigo Cavaca’s BJJ Fight History

Year Event Opponent W/L/D Method Weight Class Stage
2006 World Champ. Roger Gracie L Cross choke ABS 4F
2007 World Champ. Roger Gracie L Armbar ABS R1
2007 Brasileiro Luiz Theodoro L Adv ABS F
2008 NoGi Worlds Ulpiano Malachias W Points Ultra Heavyweight SF
2008 World Champ. Roger Gracie L Submission Ultra Heavyweight R1
2008 NoGi Worlds Gabriel Vella L Pts: 2x0 Ultra Heavyweight F
2009 ADCC Vinny Magalhaes L Heel hook 99KG R1
2009 World Champ. Unknown W Triangle ABS R1
2009 GQ Del Mar Unknown W Heel hook ABS NA
2009 World Champ. Tarsis Humphreys W Points ABS R1
2009 Pan American Roberto Tozi W Omoplata ABS 8F
2009 World Champ. Rick Miga W Triangle Ultra Heavyweight R1
2009 Pan American Marcio Corleta L Armbar Ultra Heavyweight F
2009 World Champ. Marcio Corleta W Pts: 0x0, Adv Ultra Heavyweight SF
2009 European Lucio Lagarto W Points 100KG F
2009 Pan American Jay Pages W Triangle ABS R1
2009 World Champ. Gabriel Vella L Pts: 0x0, Adv Ultra Heavyweight F
2009 World Champ. Charles Cachoeira W Referee Decision Ultra Heavyweight 4F
2009 World Champ. Bruno Bastos W Choke from back Ultra Heavyweight R1
2009 GQ Del Mar Bill Cooper L Triangle ABS NA
2009 Pan American Andre Freitas W N/A Ultra Heavyweight SF
2010 World Champ. Roger Gracie L Choke from back ABS SF
2010 European Rogent Lloret W Wristlock Ultra Heavyweight NA
2010 European Rodrigo Caporal W Triangle ABS 4F
2010 World Champ. Roberto Abreu W Botinha Ultra Heavyweight F
2010 World Champ. Petrus Melo W Triangle Ultra Heavyweight R2
2010 World Champ. Marcio Cruz W Triangle Ultra Heavyweight 4F
2010 Pan American Marcel Fortuna L Pts: 0x0, Adv 100KG SF
2010 Pan American Marcel Fortuna W Triangle ABS 4F
2010 Brasileiro Igor Silva W Footlock Ultra Heavyweight F
2010 European Gustavo Campos L Triangle ABS F
2010 European Bernardo Faria W Points ABS SF
2010 Pan American Bernardo Faria L Points ABS SF
2010 European Antonio Peinado W Points Ultra Heavyweight F
2010 World Champ. Antonio Peinado W Botinha Ultra Heavyweight SF
2011 World Pro Trial Unknown W Submission Super Heavyweight SF
2011 European Sergio Moraes L Toe hold ABS SF
2011 World Pro Trial Radek Turek W Points Super Heavyweight F
2011 World Champ. Marcio Cruz W Submission Ultra Heavyweight SF
2011 World Pro. Caio Alencar L Points Super Heavyweight 4F
2011 World Champ. Braga Neto L Pts: 7x0 Ultra Heavyweight F
2012 Grapplers Quest Derek Leyrer W Points ABS NA
2013 ADCC Trials Rodrigo Candido W Heel hook Ultra Heavyweight SF
2013 Brasileiro R. Evangelista L Pts: 4x0 Ultra Heavyweight F
2013 World Pro Marcus Almeida W Pts: 7x2 Ultra Heavyweight F
2013 ADCC Trials Kitner Moura W Gogoplata Ultra Heavyweight F
2013 European Open Jose Junior W N/A Ultra Heavyweight SF
2013 World Champ. Gustavo Dias W Botinha Ultra Heavyweight 4F
2013 European Open Alexander Trans L Pts: 3x0 Ultra Heavyweight F
2013 World Champ. Abraham Marte W DQ Ultra Heavyweight SF
2014 South American Tony Ferraz W Pts: 38x0 ABS 4F
2014 European R. Evangelista W Pts: 4x2 Ultra Heavyweight F
2014 World Pro. Piotr Wojtkowski W Pts: 7x0 ABS R1
2014 South American Jackson Ratigueri W Submission ABS RDS
2014 South American Frederico Zaganelli W Choke from back 100KG F
2014 South American Dimitrius Souza L Pts: 4x2 ABS SF
2014 World Pro. Braulio Estima L Choke from back ABS R2
2014 World Pro. Alexander Trans L Pts: 0x0, Adv Ultra Heavyweight SF
2015 ADCC RJ Roberto Alencar L Pts: 3x0 99KG 4F
2015 World Pro Pablo Agarao W Pts: 2x0 Super Heavyweight R1
2015 ADCC Jared Dopp L Pts: 2x0 Ultra Heavyweight 4F
2015 ADCC Hideki Sekine W Referee Decision Ultra Heavyweight R1
2015 Brasileiro Erberth Santos L Choke from back 100KG F
2015 ADCC RJ Cristiano Lazzarini W Pts: 2x0 99KG R1
2015 World Pro Alexander Trans L Pts: 2x0 Heavyweight 4F
2015 World Champ. Alexander Trans L Pts: 4x2 Ultra Heavyweight 4F
2016 Brasileiro Ruan Oliveira W Botinha ABS 8F
2016 World Champ. R. Evangelista W Botinha ABS 8F
2016 Copa Podio Nelton Pontes W Pts: 0x0, Adv 105KG RR
2016 World Champ. Igor Silva L Pts: 4x0 100KG 4F
2016 Brasileiro Guilherme Augusto W Adv ABS 4F
2016 Copa Podio Gabriel Lucas L Pts: 3x2 105KG RR
2016 Brasileiro Fernando Gomes W Submission Ultra Heavyweight 4F
2016 World Champ. Felipe Bueno W Pts: 4x0 100KG R1
2016 World Champ. Felipe Bueno W N/A ABS R1
2016 Brasileiro Eric Medeiros W Bow and arrow ABS RD
2016 Brasileiro Erberth Santos L Pts: 11x8 ABS F
2016 Copa Podio Diego Borges D --- 105KG RR
2016 World Champ. Dany Gerard W Pts: 0x0, Adv ABS R2
2016 Brasileiro Bruno Novaes L N/A Ultra Heavyweight 4F
2016 World Champ. Bernardo Faria L Points ABS 4F
2016 Copa Podio Alexander Trans L Pts: 2x0 105KG RR
2017 Brasileiro Tiago Carvalho W DQ 100KG R1
2017 Pan American Paul Ardila W Pts: 10x0 100KG SF
2017 World Champ. Otavio Nalati L Pts: 0x0, Adv Ultra Heavyweight 4F
2017 Brasileiro Igor Marques W Points 100KG 4F
2017 Pan American Erberth Santos L Pts: 3x0 100KG F
2017 Brasileiro Erberth Santos L Pts: 13x4 100KG SF
2017 Pan American Dany Gerard W Pts: 4x4, Adv 100KG 4F
2017 ACBJJ 5 Abdurakhman Bilarov L Referee Decision 95KG 4F
2018 ACB 10 Igor Silva L Choke from back 95KG SPF
2019 World Champ. Igor Schneider L Pts: 10x4 100KG R1

12. Rodrigo Cavaca’s BJJ Top Fight Links

Rodrigo Cavaca VS Marcio Corleta / World Championship 2009

Rodrigo Cavaca VS Charles Cachoeira / World Championship 2009

Rodrigo Cavaca VS Jay Pages / Pan Championship 2009

Submission #435 - Rodrigo Cavaca vs Leo Santos

Rodrigo Cavaca vs Nivaldo Oliveira - John's Gym Austin, TX

Photo Credit: @rodrigo.cavaca and @impactjj

Previous post
Next post