Sign-ups for the Miami Open were extended until this Sunday, Oct 17, midnight, and the tournament throne is vacant.
Last year’s absolute champion, Luiz Felipe “Big Mac” Theodoro, lamentably, was unable to get his travel arrangements to the USA together.
“It’s a shame I won’t be able to defend my title, because the Miami Open is an awesome championship. I remember how last year’s one, the first one, was an excellent event. It’s a championship that came to stay, and will get better each time, with tough matches,” exalts Big, who will return to competition action at the South American Open in Santa Catarina. To prepare for it, he’s been hitting the mats hard with Roberto Tozi in Campinas, São Paulo state, as well as brushing up on his physical conditioning with Leonardo Neto, who has lately been working with soccer in the Middle East.
His memories of Florida are so sweet for a reason, as the ultra heavyweight won the final against rising-star Alexandre Ceconi, on whom he scored five points.
“Last year, Ceconi was still realtively unknown, and he took off after the Miami Open. But it wasn’t just that match, I feel that the large number of Brazilians in Florida makes the championship a really tough one at all belts,” analyzes Big Mac.
Indeed, there will be no easy weight group. From the lightweight Jonathan Torres, who also competed in 2009, to medal-collector Stephen Hall to middleweight Guto Campos, a lot of good guys are confirmed to be there.
By Saturday, a few hundred more athletes should sign up, so get in on the party. Visit www.ibjjf.org to participate and find out who else is in the Miami Open.