Weight: 185 pounds
Hometown: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (currently resides in Palm Beach, Florida)
Nickname: “Isn’t Igor good enough?”
MMA Record: 10-0 (5-0 Amateur, 5-0 Professional)
A perfect MMA record is hard to come by. Finishing all your opponents in the first round is even more difficult. Winning all 10 fights, all in the first round, all by submission…now that’s impressive!
That is exactly what Almeida has done.
Almeida was born in Boston, Mass., but was raised in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It was in Brazil, at the age of 14, that Almeida started his Jiu-Jitsu training under Sergio Souza and Brazilian Top Team co-founder Murilo Bustamante. In 2001, he had his first MMA fight in a local promotion.
He was hooked.
Almeida moved to Palm Beach, Fla., about seven years ago to continue his MMA training. He is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt under Eduardo Brigadeiro. While all of his wins have come by submission, don’t underestimate his striking. “I’ve been working really hard on my stand-up these last few years,” Almeida said.
Almeida currently splits his training between three different gyms. His Jiu-Jitsu is with Brigadeiro at BBJJ in Palm Beach. He trains his boxing at Palm Beach Boxing with Lou Martinez, and his Muay Thai at Legacy Martial Arts with Sensei Cameron. Almeida is a BJJ instructor at these gyms, as well.
With all of his fights ending in the first round, some may question whether Almeida has the conditioning to go a full fight. Not a problem he says.
“I work with Wes Wright, my strength and conditioning coach. We have a real unorthodox training program based on Cross Fit," he said. "I pull sleds, flip tires, carry logs. It’s very effective”.
With such an impressive record, it is getting harder for Almeida to find a willing opponent. His next fight is in the XFO this August, but no one has stepped up to challenge him yet. I asked Almeida if he could fight anyone, in any promotion, who would he choose?
“I’d like to fight David Loiseau. I just think that would be a good match”.
Almeida tried out for this season’s “The Ultimate Fighter.” As part of the screening process, the fighters are paired up by a lottery. To test their ground skills, they are given one minute to grapple against their opponent. There aren’t a lot of submissions in this minute. Almeida, however, submitted his opponent five times in 60 seconds!
“Joe Silva was standing right next to me during my bout. He shook my hand after and asked if I would make the weight. I thought for sure I would make the show”
“Maybe if I wore a costume or had pink hair,” Almeida joked. “But I’m sure Joe Silva remembers me”.
Expect big things from Almeida, and hey Joe Silva, don’t forget Igor!
(Almeida wanted to thank his coaches and sponsors, Black I Sportswear and Roxy’s Pub).
Troy is a chiropractor, strength and conditioning specialist, “elderly” amateur MMA fighter and the owner of PerformanceMMA.com. You can send him comments or questions to firstname.lastname@example.org