If you are part of the BJJ world for some time you probably already heard about Eddie Bravo himself. Or maybe you heard something about The Eddie Bravo Invitational competition, EBI ruleset, combat jiu jitsu or 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu system. If no or you just want to learn more about it this is an article for you.
Who is Eddie Bravo?
Edgar “Eddie” Bravo (born in 1970 as Edgar A. Cano, he later changed his name to Bravo) is an American BJJ black belt under Jean Jacques Machado. The maker of the Eddie Bravo Invitational (EBI) grappling tournament and the EBI ruleset. He also developed his own jiu jitsu system called 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu. Eddie Bravo is also a recurring guest on The Joe Rogan Experience. He made his mark in competitive jiu-jitsu by submitting Royler Gracie at the ADCC in 2003.
His earlier life was a bit more associated with music than sport. He seemed to always draw to creating something. Not strange, so that he was the creator of several bands (he played the drums and guitar). While his main aspiration was to become a famous musician. Despite the focus on music, he was still interested in sports. He played American football and joined his high school’s wrestling team.
Due to the desire to develop his musical career in 1991, he moved to Hollywood. To look good while performing on the stage he started several sports there. He tried going to the gym and taking karate classes. However, in 1994, after watching Royce Gracie winning UFC Eddie decided to start BJJ. He focused only on jiu jitsu and after a few years, he was awarded a moment of glory. His victory over Royler Gracie at ADCC was considered by fans as a highlight of the event and a jump to fame for Bravo.
Perception of Eddie Bravo
You can see a lot of mixed feelings on Eddie Bravo. He is considered as an enigma in the BJJ world and it’s probably the nicest word by which he is being described. Others are a bit harsher and say Eddie is a weirdo and/or outsider. He is referred to as a bit crazy pot-smoking, conspiracy nut believing the earth is flat and vaccines are bad. Despite these terms, he is praised for his jiu jitsu. Generally, people are really positive about it, saying he is good, etc.
Some go even a step further and present the whole complicated opinions about him and not just call him by different names. These opinions are roughly divided into two groups. One says that Eddie Bravo is by far the biggest underachiever in the history of BJJ and others say he is a kinda smart guy who knows how to make money. On one side despite the fact he won with Royler Gracie he was spending time too idly. Focusing on his music (described as horrible by some) and doing way too much weed instead of paying attention to strength and conditioning training. It said that he was just lazy and preferred to come up with weird moves because it was easier than trying to keep up with the best. Maybe with more focus and dedication, he could have become one of the greatest of all time.
Other stress that Eddie Bravo starts BJJ late (ofc like for a professional athlete). He was already 26 years old when he started to put a gi and was already 33 years old when he beat Royler. Bravo just kinda realized he is too old for starting a professional competing grappler career at this age. So he just cashes his reputation and creates a jiu jitsu brand for ensuring his retirement pension, feed his family and pay his bills. According to these opinions, it was a really smart move giving him a more secure future. Such opinions seem to be supported by his net worth estimated at $ 1.5 million.
Others just kinda don’t treat him seriously and think he is just hilarious. They also stress that even despite these somewhat negative terms he is not disliked and people “love that motherfucker”.
Eddie Bravo ideas
10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu
10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu is a non-traditional system of BJJ avoiding the use of a gi. It is focused more on submission-only grappling competition rather than points. The idea behind this was to try to implement as many of the BJJ techniques as possible in MMA competitions. Eddie Bravo just felt high-level jiu-jitsu practitioners weren’t winning as much as they should have, mainly attributed this to them wearing a gi when training jiu-jitsu but competing in MMA without one.
Eddie Bravo opened his first 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu school In 2003 in Los Angeles, California. Now there are over 100 schools worldwide. Due to the fact in the 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu system, there are no gis colored rashguards are offered to help visually represent belt rank.
10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu has been controversial from the beginning. Abandoning the use of gi drew some backlash from other BJJ schools. There has been also debated as to how much 10th Planet techniques, like the rubber guard, translates to MMA.
Eddie Bravo Invitational
Eddie Bravo Invitational (EBI) is a submission-only jiu jitsu tournament he introduced to the world in 2014. EBI features 16 athletes competing to defeat four others in a tournament of masterful techniques, strength, & will. There are no points and advantages, only submissions. The winner can take home a possible $20,000. The show is designed for the fans. The audience wins big when the competitors are forced to go after submissions, making EBI perfect for mass audiences.
EBI tournaments were organized several times a year. The winners were such well-known grapplers as Garry Tonon or Gordon Ryan. As part of recent EBI tournaments, fights were held also on combat jiu jitsu rules (more on this below). The formula was a success and soon Eddie introduced CJJ separate tournaments – Combat Jiu Jitsu Worlds. However, Eddie Bravo said he will be also bringing back “classic” EBI in 2020 or maybe in 2021. Just first all CJJ World champions in all weight divisions need to be established. He also added that EBI will never die and neither will CJJW.