Heartwarming: Johnatha Alves Promoted To Black Belt Following Worlds Win

In what may be the first BJJ promotion delivered via three-point shot, AOJ brown belt Johnatha Alves was tossed a black belt by his coach Guiherme Mendes immediately after winning the 2019 IBJJF Worlds.

Standing after winning his last match on points, a celebrating Alves looked over to find his coach in the stands waving a black bundle in his right hand. Moments later the bundle flew through the air and unfurled at Alves’ feet. The emotional realization from the champion elicited a loud chanting from the crowd, and a new black belt was born.

Alves first made waves in the BJJ world by defeating 2018 IBJJF black belt champion Jamil Hill-Taylor in a super fight this past July.

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The older I get the more I appreciate character over talent. I admire hard work and the ability to overcome like nothing else in this sport. John is a hard worker, the kind of athlete that every coach likes to have, the one that does more than is required to do. Throwing that belt to you today after you won brown belt worlds with 0 points scored against you and submitting 5 of your 6 matches in under 2 minutes made me think about the shy 16 year old stepping on AOJ mats for the first time. I look now and all I see is how much you have improved on and off the mat. You are ready to start your journey in the black belt John. Chase your dreams, fall down and get back up stronger every time, because every champion faces defeat, but only the real ones use it to light the fire inside of us. never let anyone put limits on what you can do, cant wait to see what the future holds for us. You were untouchable today. @johnatha @artofjiujitsu @believeandachieve @rvcasport @newbalance @masonmonsevais @caio.izidro Quanto mais velho eu fico, mais aprecio o caráter ao invés do talento. Admiro o trabalho duro e a capacidade de superaçao mais do que qualquer coisa neste esporte. John é um trabalhador nato, o tipo de atleta que todo treinador gosta de ter, aquele que faz mais do que o necessário. Jogar essa faixa para você hoje, depois de assistir voce ganhar o mundial na marrom com 0 pontos marcados contra você e finalizando 5 das suas 6 lutas em menos de 2 minutos, me fez pensar no tímido juvenil de 16 anos pisando na AOJ pela primeira vez. Eu olho agora e tudo que vejo é o quanto você melhorou dentro e fora do tatame. Você está pronto para começar sua jornada no faixa-preta John. Persiga seus sonhos, caia e volte mais forte a cada vez, porque todo campeão enfrenta a derrota, mas apenas os verdadeiros a usam para acender esta chama dentro de nós. Nunca deixe ninguém colocar limites no que você pode fazer. Eu mal posso esperar para ver o que o futuro nos reserva. Você foi intocável hoje.

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Alves ended up finishing the first five of his six opponents via submission and had zero points scored against him.

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