The Complete Guide To The 2022 Pan No-Gi
Gianni Grippo of Alliance is a three-time Pan No-Gi Champion, having won the event in 2017, 2018, and 2021. In addition to his Pan No-Gi titles, Gianni is also a two time No-Gi World Champion and a two time Pan Champion in the gi. As an athlete who has always competed both with and without the gi since receiving his black belt in 2013, Gianni’s game is constantly evolving. Although Gianni is currently the #1 ranked no-gi lightweight in the world, he’ll be competing in his familiar featherweight division this year. Also competing at feather will be Adam Benayoun, Daniel Maira, Nick Salles, Richar Nogueira, and Gabriel Sousa, among others.
Another highly accomplished Pan No-Gi Champion is Gracie Barra’s AJ Agazarm. After winning the Pan No-Gi title in 2013, AJ went on to win no-gi gold at Worlds, Europeans, and Brazilian Nationals using his excellent takedowns and positional control. He’ll be competing in the lightweight division this weekend alongside Eduardo Roque, Danilo Moreira, Kieran Kichuk, and Jonata Gomes.
ZR Team rooster weight Estevan Martinez won his first Pan No-Gi title in 2021 and went on to win a World No-Gi title the following October. The gold medals were impressive not only because the divisions were very competitive, but also because Estevan had never won these events before, even in the colored belts. The titles earned Estevan the #1 ranking for black belt no-gi rooster weight competitors. His nickname, the ‘Giant Slayer,’ comes from his willingness to compete in the open class, despite being significantly outweighed in nearly all of those matches.
#1 ranked no-gi medium-heavyweight Jeferson Guaresi won his first Pan No-Gi title in 2109 in the middleweight division. He’ll return to middleweight this year after an incredible 2021 no-gi campaign where he won another Pan No-Gi title and a World No-Gi title. Jeferson has solid takedown skills, great pressure passing, and a dynamic and flexible open guard. His black belt no-gi matches against Jaime Canuto, Andrew Wiltse, and Diego Ramalho have highlighted his skillset and shown that he’s always a top contender for gold.
Keenan Cornelius of Legion American Jiu-Jitsu will return to IBJJF competition for the first time since the 2020 European Championships where he won gold in the heavyweight division and took silver in the open. Although mostly known for his gi game, Keenan has also found success without the kimono. He won the open class at the 2019 Pan No-Gi and the medium-heavy division at the 2014 No-Gi Worlds, shortly after receiving his black belt. Keenan will be competing in the super-heavy division this time around, where he’ll be joined by 2021 champion Devhonte Johnson, European Champion Patrick Gaudio, and American National No-Gi Champion Fellipe Trovo.
Another Unity Jiu-Jitsu athlete, Devhonte Johnson, will also be looking to defend his 2021 Pan No-Gi title. The super heavyweight is another #1 ranked competitor in his division who will be competing at this year’s Pan No-Gi. Devhonte’s black belt no-gi resume includes World, Pan, and European titles that he earned competing against the best super heavyweights in the world.
After taking second in the open class at the 2020 Pan No-Gi, Vannessa Griffin came back in 2021 to win her first title at the event. The Crazy 88 representative is currently ranked #5 at no-gi middleweight and has proven that she’s one of the best in her division, with or without the gi.
Can’t Miss Divisions
There are many black belt divisions at the 2022 Pan No-Gi that you will not want to miss. Among them is the black belt adult male super heavy division. The division includes returning champions and highly ranked athletes that will be sure to put on exciting matches. In addition to the above mentioned athletes Keenan Cornelius and Devhonte Johnson, super heavy also includes Patrick Gaudio, Felipe Trovo, Henrique Ceconi, and Diego Ramalho. The twelve person bracket has the potential for many unique and interesting stylistic matchups.
With so many highly accomplished female athletes registered for the 2022 Pan No-Gi, the open class division is one you will not want to miss. Nathiely de Jesus, Elizabeth Clay, Rafaela Guedes, Thalyta Silva, Vannessa Griffin, and Anna Rodrigues are all potential open class competitors. Rafaela Guedes won double gold at the 2021 Worlds No-Gi and also won the Pan No-Gi open class division in 2020. Elizabeth Clay of Ares is a 2021 World No-Gi Champion and the double gold winner at last year’s Pan No-Gi. This year’s open class will be highly competitive and features competitors with vastly different styles, so you won’t want to miss any of these matches.
This year’s middleweight division includes Michael Langhi, Jeferson Guaresi, Mike Perez, Igor Feliz, Yan Paiva, Francisco Cuneo, and Vitor Oliveira, among others. Jeferson is a World and Pan No-Gi Champion, winning both no-gi events in 2021. Michael Langhi has the most accolades of anyone in the division, having won every major gi and no-gi IBJJF title except for the Pan No-Gi. These athletes, along with the rest of the middleweight division, will provide an entertaining clash of styles in a weight division that is always one of the most challenging.
Another division you won’t want to miss is adult male medium-heavy. Elite competitors Gabriel Ages, Jaime Canuto, Guthierry Barbosa, Francisco Lo, Oliver Taza, Manuel Ribamar, Felipe Cesar Silva, and Sebastian Rodriguez will all be contenders for medium-heavy gold. The only World No-Gi Champion in the division is Manuel Ribamar, who won the event in 2019. Jaime Canuto of GF Team is a two time World No-Gi silver medalist, coming up just short of the gold medal in 2018 and 2019. While Ribamar and Jaime have the most black belt no-gi credentials, they’ll find plenty of challenges in the rest of the field.
Brown Belts to Watch
In addition to the talent rich black belt divisions, there are also plenty of excellent brown belt competitors to keep your eyes on at the 2022 Pan No-Gi. The following are some of brown belt competitors you won’t want to miss. Shay Montague ECJJA rooster, Mourece Ramirez Marcio Andre Association feather, Marco Brito Aspire to Inspire feather, Carlos Henrique Dream Art light, Rafael Silveira Atos middle, Jacob Couch Pedigo Submission Fighting heavy, Steffen Banta Alliance Dallas super-heavy, Sophia Cassella Serra BJJ Academy feather, Rosary Walsh Pedigo Submission Fighting middleweight, and Giovanna Jara Dream Art heavy.
Don't miss a minute of the Pan No-Gi action. Go to flograppling.com to catch all of the matches, starting on Friday October 14th.