its science guilherme mendes photo
Welcome to another episode of “It’s Science”. We  continue our 2013 season with a quick look at Guilherme Mendes (2011-2013). Now on to the fun stuff…
Abstract: All matches observed of Guilherme Mendes used in this small sample occurred at IBJJF events, inside his weight division, and between 2011-2013. Only techniques, occurrences, and outcomes that were recorded are displayed in the data below (i.e. if no butterfly sweeps occurred, there will not be a representation of that in the sample data). Matches were selected at random based on available matches  – selected using a random generator from 18 total available IBJJF matches matches between 2011-2013. This is a limited sample – but given the estimated amount of matches in this time period – it is well above the percentage necessary to create a scientifically validated trend sampling.
So what did we learn?: Guilherme Mendes is an impressive competitor. Much like his brother, he is quite good at avoiding defeat. Inside this study – which took place between 2011 and 2013  – there was only one loss on his record. The best way to describe his style is, “insistent”. He insisted upon a handful of techniques, and was able to put himself in the exact position to execute these moves with absolute precision. Approximately 81% of his passes were executed in a very similar fashion – Half-Guard, knee slide, and nearly 88% of his sweep came from a  De La Riva to berimbolo-style of attack. His game was very effective. It saw him finish almost 60% of his matches by submission, and it him in position to be the first to score in 100% of the matches in that he was the victor. In observing his style and performance, I believe this is a very important metric for Guilherme. By being the first to score in his matches, he immediately put his opponent on defense, and was able to stay ahead and inside his own comfort zone. In his sole loss he did not score first, and was unable to build his normal momentum through out the match.
There is a lot that the average competitor can learn from Guilherme Mendes style and approach. While the techniques are far from “simple”, his approach and execution is very basic. He kept his attacks to a handful of techniques, and insisted upon them from the beginning. One thing to learn from his competitive approach, is that by building a match around your strengths from the start, you can put yourself in a consistently offensive game. This can help reduce hesitation and can ensure that techniques are executed properly under pressure.

Notable Stats:

    • 7:15 was his average match length
    • Won 58% of his matches by submission
    • Scored first in 100% of his wins (91% total)
    • Passed from the half-guard 81.5% of the time
    • 88% of sweeps occured from the De La Riva guard
    • He preferred knee-cut passes to leg drag passes 13/2
    • Approximately 77% of his submissions were from the side control position
    • When on the feet he preferred pulling guard – as he did so 85% of the time
Top Competitor Guilherme Mendes
Successes Side Control Submissions
Avoided… Mount
Top Technique 1 Knee Through Pass From Half-Guard
Top Technique 2 Berimbolo
Number of Matches Observed 12
Submits Opponent 7
Wins by Points 4
Minutes of footage watched 87
Scores First 11
Total Wins 11
Total Loses 1
Sweeps (Position)
De la Riva Sweeps 7
50/50 1
Sweeps (Type)
Ankle Pick sweep 1
Berimbolo-style (kiss of the dragon, etc.) 7
Total Sweeps 8
Passes (Position)
On Knees 1
Half-Guard 13
Standing 2
Passes (Type)
leg drag 2
knee through 13
x-pass 1
Total Passes 16
Taking the Back
side control 4
Total Back-Takes 4
Submissions (Position)
Back 2
Side Control 5
Submissions (Type)
choke from back 2
gi choke (Guilitine, Brabo, Basball Bat) 5
Total Subs: 7
Takedown/ Ground Establishment
Double-Guard Pull 3
Guard Pull 9
ankle pick 2