On 26th December 2023, it was announced that Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza was added as a third member in the 2024 ADCC Hall of Fame.
Souza is a legendary Brazilian 4th-degree BJJ black belt submission fighter and a professional MMA competitor. In the world of Jiu-Jitsu and MMA, he has won innumerable times, including the gold medals.
At the age of 17, Souza's martial arts career began. His master Henrique challenged him in Jiu-jitsu, he accepted the challenge and played casually. But when he was defeated, he decided to try better and since then got addicted to the sport. He was trained from white to black belt with Herique Machado. After Henrique Machado formed ASLE academy (Sensei Fighting Sports Association), he became their terrific athlete. On a national level, at colored belts, Jacare won various titles and gained popularity.
In the 2003 IBJJF World Championship, he was awarded a gold medal in the brown belt, and in that same year, he also got his black belt under his master. The year 2004 was Souza’s year in BJJ as he fought with one of the best grapplers in the world. He won the Jiu-Jitsu World Championships in both weight and absolute divisions, losing to only Roger Gracie, who outweighed him by nearly 25 lbs. After that, he was awarded multiple medals in national and international grappling tournaments.
Throughout the years 2003, 2004, and 2005, Souza secured titles in the ADCC World, IBJJF World, IBJJF Pan American, CBJJO World, and IBJJF European Open Championships, winning gold medals in Mediumheavy and Absolute weights. He is considered the greatest BJJ fighter of his era.
Ronaldo Souza’s MMA career began with his debut fight at the Jungle Fight event in 2003. He is regarded as among the most successful wrestlers, competing in Strikeforce Middleweight Champion, Jungle Fight, and DREAM. On April 20, 2015, he was No.2 in the official UFC middleweight rankings and also honored with “Submission of the Night”.
In 2016, after winning against Vitor Belfort at the UFC 198 in the first round by TKO, he was awarded the title of “Performance of the Night”.
In 2022, he started his own Jiu-Jitsu academy in Orlando, Florida. In 2023, he had his debut fight in boxing. Recently, he is added to the class of the 2024 ACC Hall of Fame.
Photo Credit: @ronaldojacare