Ronaldo Souza

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Ronaldo Souza
Jacare-Souza UFC.jpg
Born Ronaldo Souza dos Santos
(1979-12-07) December 7, 1979 (age 35)
Vila Velha, Brazil[1]
Other names Jacaré (Alligator)
Nationality Brazilian
Height 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight 185 lb (84 kg; 13 st 3 lb)
Division Middleweight
Reach 74 in (188 cm)
Style Brazilian jiu-jitsu, Judo
Fighting out of Manaus, Brazil


Team Nogueira

black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu

black belt in Judo
Years active 2003 – present
Mixed martial arts record
Total 25
Wins 21
By knockout 2
By submission 15
By decision 4
Losses 3
By knockout 2
By decision 1
No contests 1
Other information
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog
last updated on: May 20, 2010
Ronaldo Souza
Medal record
Competitor for  Brazil
Submission Wrestling
ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championship
Silver 2003 Sao Paulo -88kg
Silver 2005 Long Beach Absolute
Gold 2005 Long Beach -88kg
Gold 2009 Barcelona Superfight
Silver 2011 Nottingham Superfight
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
World Jiu-Jitsu Championship
Gold 2001 Rio de Janeiro      Absolute
Gold 2001 Rio de Janeiro      -82kg
Silver 2002 Rio de Janeiro      Absolute
Gold 2002 Rio de Janeiro      -88kg
Gold 2003 Rio de Janeiro      Absolute
Gold 2003 Rio de Janeiro      -88kg
Gold 2004 Rio de Janeiro      Absolute
Silver 2004 Rio de Janeiro      -88kg
Gold 2005 Rio de Janeiro      Absolute
Gold 2005 Rio de Janeiro      -88kg

Ronaldo Souza dos Santos[1] (born December 7, 1979), nicknamed Jacaré (Portuguese pronunciation: [ʒakaˈɾɛ]), is a Brazilian mixed martial artist, submission grappler and Brazilian jiu-jitsu practitioner competing in the UFC's Middleweight division. Souza is the former Strikeforce Middleweight Champion, and has also formerly competed for DREAM, and Jungle Fight. As of February 17, 2014, he is #2 in official UFC Middleweight rankings.[2]


Souza was born in Vila Velha, Brazil, was raised in Cariacica, Brazil until the age of 15, and competed in football as a goalkeeper. Souza had a rough upbringing, and on the day he turned 15, he saw one of his good friends get shot to death. After this event, Souza's mother moved him to Manaus to go live with his brother and started training Judo and Brazilian jiu-jitsu when he was 17. He is a five-time World Jiu-Jitsu Champion, including gold medals in the Openweight class in 2003, 2004 and 2005. His other credentials include the 2005 77–87 kg ADCC Champion and the 2005 ADCC Absolute Division runner-up, only losing to Roger Gracie who outweighed him by approximately 25 lbs. Along with Roger Gracie and Marcelo Garcia, Jacaré is widely considered to be among the greatest BJJ practitioners of his time.

Mixed martial arts career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Souza made his mixed martial arts debut on September 9, 2003 at Jungle Fight's inaugural event where he lost to Jorge "Macaco" Patino by KO at 3:13 into the first round. He returned to mixed martial arts eight months later at Jungle Fight 2 securing a submission win over Victor Babkir under a minute into the first round. His next fight was in April 2006 at Jungle Fight 6 where he got his second win, defeating Alexander Shlemenko by an arm triangle choke submission. He went on to fight twice before the end of 2006, winning both fights by submission during the first round.

In 2006, Souza fought and drew with UFC Hall of Famer Randy Couture in a grappling contest.[3] After the match Souza was invited by Couture to train at his gym. Souza accepted and started training at Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas.[4] Souza's first fight of 2007 was on May 19 with him scoring a submission win due to strikes over veteran Bill Vucick at Gracie Fighting Championships: Evolution. He would next fight twice within a two-week period on September 29 and October 13, scoring two submission wins both within the first round.


In 2008, Souza signed with Japanese MMA-promotion DREAM and was scheduled to participate in the 2008 DREAM Middleweight Grand-Prix. In the first round of the tournament, at DREAM 2 on April 29, 2008, he defeated Ian Murphy by a rear-naked choke submission in the first round.[5][6] This secured him a place in the quarter-finals which took place at DREAM 4 on June 15 where he fought former ICON Sport Middleweight Champion Jason "Mayhem" Miller. The fight went the distance with Souza continuously going for submissions with Miller escaping multiple rear-naked choke, leglock and armbar-attempts while mounting his own offense on the feet. Souza was awarded a unanimous decision victory which secured him a place in the semi-final of the Middleweight Grand-Prix.[7]

In the semi-finals which took place at DREAM 6 on September 23, Souza defeated Zelg Galesic early in the first round by armbar submission. The victory earned him a place in the finals of the tournament and a shot at the DREAM Middleweight Championship against Gegard Mousasi that same night. In the fight Souza was knocked out early in the first round by an upkick as he attempted to dive past Mousasi's guard to land a strike of his own. After participating in the tournament, Souza left Xtreme Couture and went to San Diego to train with Saulo and Xande Ribeiro, before leaving to train with Anderson Silva and Andre Galvao in preparation for Silva's upcoming bout with Thales Leites at UFC 97 at Black House.[8]

Souza fought in the DREAM Middleweight Championship in a rematch with Jason Miller at DREAM 9 after Gegard Mousasi vacated the title when moving up to Light Heavyweight. The fight was called a no contest due to an illegal kick to the head that opened up a gash on Souza's head.[9]


Souza made his Strikeforce debut on December 19, 2009 at Strikeforce: Evolution with a first-round submission win over Matt Lindland, via arm-triangle choke. In this fight, Souza showed a major improvement in his stand up game and striking. Souza faced Joey Villaseñor on May 15, 2010 at Strikeforce: Heavy Artillery.[10] He won the fight via unanimous decision,[11] dominating the first round, being very aggressive, achieving the mount position and almost achieving the submission, but slowed down on the 2nd and 3rd round.[12]

Souza fought Tim Kennedy on August 21, 2010 at Strikeforce: Houston for the vacant Strikeforce Middleweight Championship, and won via unanimous decision.[13] Souza then defended the belt for the first time against Robbie Lawler, on January 29, 2011 at Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Cyborg.[11]

In his second defense, Souza lost his Middleweight Championship against American Kickboxing Academy fighter Luke Rockhold via unanimous decision (50-45, 48-47, 48-47).[14]

On March 3, 2012, Souza made his sixth Strikeforce appearance against late replacement Bristol Marunde. Souza won via arm-triangle choke, submitting Marunde at 2:43 of the final round.[15]

On August 18, 2012, Souza faced Derek Brunson in his seventh Strikeforce appearance. Souza dropped Brunson early with a counter right hand which planted Brunson on the mat and landed three ground strikes, knocking out Brunson in just 41 seconds.

Souza faced UFC veteran Ed Herman at the final Strikeforce card, Strikeforce: Marquardt vs. Saffiedine, on January 12, 2013.[16] He won via submission in the first round.[11]

Ultimate Fighting Championship[edit]

Souza signed a five-fight deal with the UFC in January 2013.[17]

Souza was expected to make his promotional debut against Constantinos Philippou on May 18, 2013 at UFC on FX 8.[18] However, Philippou pulled out of the bout in early May, citing a cut above his eye, and was replaced by Chris Camozzi.[19][20] Souza won the fight via technical submission due to an arm-triangle choke in the first round.[21]

For his second fight in the promotion, Souza faced Yushin Okami on September 4, 2013 at UFC Fight Night 28.[22] Souza won the fight via TKO in the first round.

Souza faced Francis Carmont on February 15, 2014 at UFC Fight Night 36.[23] He won the fight via unanimous decision. Jacare revealed after that he was injured during his training camp and will require a minimum of 6 weeks for recovery.[24]

Souza was expected to rematch Gegard Mousasi on August 2, 2014 at UFC 176.[25] However after UFC 176, was cancelled, Mousasi/Souza was rescheduled for September 5, 2014 at UFC Fight Night 50.[26] Souza won via submission in the third round.[27] The win also earned Souza his first earning a Performance of the Night bonus award.[28]

Souza was expected to face Yoel Romero on February 28, 2015 at UFC 184.[29] However, Souza pulled out of the fight on January 15, 2015 due to pneumonia. The bout will be left intact and moved to a later date.[30]

The bout with Romero was rescheduled for April 18, 2015 at UFC on Fox 15.[31]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Grappling credentials[edit]

  • ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championship:
    • ADCC 2011 Superfight Runner-up (against Braulio Estima)
    • ADCC 2009 Superfight Champion (against Robert Drysdale)
    • ADCC 2005 77 – 87 kg: 1st Place
    • ADCC 2005 Openweight: 2nd Place
    • ADCC 2003 77 – 87 kg: 2nd Place
    • ADCC 2003 Brazilian Qualifiers 77 – 87 kg: 1st Place
  • CBJJ World Championships:
    • 2005 Black Belt Medium Heavy: 1st Place
    • 2005 Black Belt Open Weight: 1st Place
    • 2004 Black Belt Medium Heavy: 2nd Place
    • 2004 Black Belt Open Weight: 1st Place
    • 2003 Brown Belt Medium Heavy: 1st Place
    • 2003 Brown Belt Open Weight: 1st Place
    • 2002 Brown Belt Medium Heavy: 1st Place
    • 2002 Brown Belt Open Weight: 2nd Place
    • 2001 Purple Belt Middle: 1st Place
    • 2001 Purple Belt Open Weight: 1st Place
  • CBJJ Pan American Championships:
    • 2004 Black Belt Medium Heavy: 1st Place
    • 2004 Black Belt Open Weight: 1st Place
  • CBJJ European Championships:
    • 2005 Black Belt Medium Heavy: 1st Place
    • 2005 Black Belt Open Weight: 2nd Place
  • CBJJ Brazilian Championships:
    • 2004 Brown Belt Medium Heavy: 1st Place
  • BJJ World Cup:
    • 2005 Black belt: 2nd place
    • 2004 Black belt: 1st place

Mixed martial arts[edit]

    • 2008 DREAM Middleweight Grand Prix Runner-up
  • Sherdog
    • 2014 All-Violence Third Team

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 21–3 (1) Gegard Mousasi Submission (guillotine choke) UFC Fight Night: Jacare vs. Mousasi September 5, 2014 3 4:30 Ledyard, Connecticut, United States Performance of the Night
Win 20–3 (1) Francis Carmont Decision (unanimous) UFC Fight Night: Machida vs. Mousasi February 15, 2014 3 5:00 Jaraguá do Sul, Brazil
Win 19–3 (1) Yushin Okami TKO (punches) UFC Fight Night: Teixeira vs. Bader September 4, 2013 1 2:47 Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Win 18–3 (1) Chris Camozzi Technical Submission (arm-triangle choke) UFC on FX: Belfort vs. Rockhold May 18, 2013 1 3:37 Jaraguá do Sul, Brazil Submission of the Night.
Win 17–3 (1) Ed Herman Submission (kimura) Strikeforce: Marquardt vs. Saffiedine January 12, 2013 1 3:10 Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States Catchweight of 194 lb.
Win 16–3 (1) Derek Brunson KO (punches) Strikeforce: Rousey vs. Kaufman August 18, 2012 1 0:41 San Diego, California, United States
Win 15–3 (1) Bristol Marunde Submission (arm-triangle choke) Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey March 3, 2012 3 2:43 Columbus, Ohio, United States
Loss 14–3 (1) Luke Rockhold Decision (unanimous) Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Kharitonov September 10, 2011 5 5:00 Cincinnati, Ohio, United States Lost Strikeforce Middleweight Championship.
Win 14–2 (1) Robbie Lawler Submission (rear-naked choke) Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Cyborg January 29, 2011 3 2:00 San Jose, California, United States Defended Strikeforce Middleweight Championship.
Win 13–2 (1) Tim Kennedy Decision (unanimous) Strikeforce: Houston August 21, 2010 5 5:00 Houston, Texas, United States Won vacant Strikeforce Middleweight Championship.
Win 12–2 (1) Joey Villaseñor Decision (unanimous) Strikeforce: Heavy Artillery May 15, 2010 3 5:00 St. Louis, Missouri, United States
Win 11–2 (1) Matt Lindland Submission (arm-triangle choke) Strikeforce: Evolution December 19, 2009 1 4:18 San Jose, California, United States
NC 10–2 (1) Jason Miller No Contest (cut from an illegal kick) DREAM 9 May 26, 2009 1 2:33 Yokohama, Japan For vacant DREAM Middleweight Championship.
Loss 10–2 Gegard Mousasi KO (upkick) DREAM 6 September 23, 2008 1 2:15 Saitama, Japan For vacant DREAM Middleweight Championship.
Win 10–1 Zelg Galešić Submission (armbar) DREAM 6 September 23, 2008 1 1:27 Saitama, Japan
Win 9–1 Jason Miller Decision (unanimous) DREAM 4 June 15, 2008 2 5:00 Yokohama, Japan
Win 8–1 Ian Murphy Submission (rear-naked choke) DREAM 2 April 29, 2008 1 3:37 Saitama, Japan
Win 7–1 Wendell Santos Submission (punches) Hero's The Jungle October 13, 2007 1 1:40 Manaus, Brazil
Win 6–1 José de Ribamar Submission (armbar) Amazon Challenge September 29, 2007 1 3:28 Manaus, Brazil
Win 5–1 Bill Vucick Submission (punches) Gracie Fighting Championships: Evolution May 19, 2007 1 3:01 Columbus, Ohio, United States
Win 4–1 Haim Gozali Submission (rear-naked choke) Jungle Fight Europe December 17, 2006 1 1:34 Ljubljana, Slovenia
Win 3–1 Alexey Prokofiev Submission (triangle choke) Fury Fighting Championship 1 September 27, 2006 1 2:30 São Paulo, Brazil
Win 2–1 Alexander Shlemenko Technical Submission (arm-triangle choke) Jungle Fight 6 April 29, 2006 1 2:10 Manaus, Brazil
Win 1–1 Victor Babkir Submission (punches) Jungle Fight 2 May 15, 2004 1 0:56 Manaus, Brazil
Loss 0–1 Jorge Patino KO (punch) Jungle Fight 1 September 13, 2003 1 3:13 Manaus, Brazil


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Ronaldo Jacare Souza – Wiki". Retrieved 2010-07-08. 
  2. ^ UFC Fighter Rankings
  3. ^ Gross, Josh (2006-11-18). "Couture Draws with "Jacaré" and Garcia Wins Again". Retrieved 2009-02-28. 
  4. ^ Martin, Denis. "BJJ Phenom ‘Jacaré’ Set for Toughest Test to Date". Retrieved 2009-02-28. 
  5. ^ (2008-04-29). "Success for Sakuraba in Saitama". Retrieved 2009-02-28. 
  6. ^ Nowe, Jason. "Aoki Bests ‘JZ,’ Middleweights Advance". Retrieved 2009-02-28. 
  7. ^ "Dream 4 Play-by-Play". Retrieved 2009-02-28. 
  8. ^ Alonso, Marcelo (February 27, 2009). "Jacaré, Galvão Training Silva for Leites". Retrieved 2009-02-28. 
  9. ^
  10. ^ "Randleman vs. Gracie, Villasenor vs. "Jacare" official for May 15 Strikeforce event". MMAjunkie. 
  11. ^ a b c d "Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza Official MMA Record -". Retrieved 2013-05-20. 
  12. ^ Robert Rousseau. "Ronaldo Jacare Souza Defeats Joey Villasenor By Unanimous Decision". Retrieved 2013-05-20. 
  13. ^ Brian Knapp. "Jacare, Kennedy to Vie for Vacant Strikeforce Crown". Sherdog. 
  14. ^ "Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza Defends Strikeforce Title Against Luke Rockhold". June 5, 2011. Retrieved 2011-07-25. 
  15. ^ Fontanez, Erik. "Strikeforce Tate vs. Rousey Results: ‘Jacare’ Souza Wins With Late Sub". 
  17. ^ "Souza signed in UFC and is expected to do very well.". January 6, 2013. 
  18. ^ "Constantinos Philippou vs. 'Jacare' Souza targeted for UFC on FX 8 in Brazil". 2013-02-15. Retrieved 2013-02-15. 
  19. ^ Ariel Helwani (May 3, 2013). "Injury forces Costa Philippou out of 'Jacare' Souza fight at UFC on FX 8". Retrieved May 3, 2013. 
  20. ^ Staff (May 3, 2013). "Chris Camozzi ersätter mot ‘Jacare’, Natal möter nu nykomlingen Joao Zeferino". Retrieved May 3, 2013. 
  21. ^ "UFC on FX: Belfort vs. Rockhold". Retrieved 2013-05-20. 
  22. ^ Mike Bohn (June 23, 2013). "Yushin Okami vs. Ronaldo Souza in the works for UFC on FOX Sports 1 #3". Retrieved June 23, 2013. 
  23. ^ Guilherme Cruz (2013-11-19). "‘Jacare’ Souza vs. Francis Carmont added to UFC Fight Night card in Brazil". 
  24. ^ Foster, Jack.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  25. ^ Matt Erickson (June 18, 2014). "UFC 176 co-main event set with Gegard Mousasi vs. 'Jacare' Souza". Retrieved June 18, 2014. 
  26. ^ Staff (2014-07-09). "Dana White says Gegard Mousasi vs. Jacare Souza will take place at UFC Fight Night 50". Retrieved 2014-07-09. 
  27. ^ John Morgan (September 5, 2014). "UFC Fight Night 50 results: Ronaldo Souza dominates Gegard Mousasi, earns third-round tap". Retrieved September 5, 2014. 
  28. ^ "UUFC Fight Night 50 bonuses: Lauzon, Chiesa, Souza and Rothwell win $50,000". September 6, 2014. 
  29. ^ Brian Martin (2014-11-13). "UFC 184: Jacare Souza vs. Yoel Romero added to Staples Center card". Retrieved 2014-11-13. 
  30. ^ Thomas Gerbasi (2015-01-15). "Souza-Romero scratched from UFC 184". 
  31. ^ Matt Erickson (February 11, 2015). "Yoel Romero vs. 'Jacare' Souza re-booked for UFC on FOX 15 co-main event". 

External links[edit]

Title last held by
Jake Shields
4th Strikeforce Middleweight Champion
August 21, 2010 – September 10, 2011
Succeeded by
Luke Rockhold