A Refreshing Approach To Changing Teams Helped Lucas Rodrigues Achieve His BJJ Goals

When an instructor helps shape a student’s BJJ career, it’s understandable that they might feel sad or even betrayed when an athlete leaves their academy for another to pursue their dreams in the sport. Terms like creonte are still thrown around in some circles of the community, and unfortunately, even departures that are amicable at first sometimes lead to animosity between coaches and former students.

When BJJ brown belt Lucas Rodrigues had to make that tough decision, though, his jiu-jitsu instructor shared with him a completely different mentality that let Rodrigues pursue his goals with peace of mind while also maintaining a beautiful friendship between the two.

Rodrigues had been training in Sweden under Alan “Finfou” Nascimento before he was invited to train at the famous AOJ academy under the Mendes brothers. Understanding that this was an incredible opportunity, but not wanting to hurt or disrespect the instructor who had given him so much, he approached Finfou with the news. Then, Finfou gave Rodrigues a piece of advice he’d never forget:

“The people who really want your wellbeing or care for you, they don’t care where you are or where you fight for — they only care how good you feel.”

Rodriguez achieved significant success under the Mendes brothers, winning Worlds in 2018 as a purple belt and being promoted to brown belt on the podium. As the pandemic has disrupted life around the world, though, he’s seen his competitive opportunities dry up, and he’s currently back in Sweden for the time being. Thankfully, he still has the perfect place to call home while he’s in Europe.

In the latest collaboration between the Jiu-Jitsu Times and Sweep Productions, we take an exclusive look at the journey of this up-and-coming BJJ star, from his humble beginnings to his bright future.

Check out the short film below:


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