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North Side Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Where Belts Are Earned & Champions Are Made!

North Side Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu News

Santos Rene Rivera 

Wins 2nd IBJJF NO-GI Adult World Championship !

North Side Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu's Santos Rene Rivera is the first and ONLY person from Tucson to win two World Championships. Santos is now the youngest Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in the entire State of Arizona, as he was promoted 12/30/2017 by Professors Sean Huff and Paul Nava.  Santos has won the 2015  NO-GI World Championships at Purple & the 2017 NO-GI World Championship at Brown Belt.  2018 will be a big year for Santos as he will go up against the very best in the world of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu  has to offer. Santos is North Side Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu's first ever student to go from the white belt all the way to Black belt, and Professor Sean Huff's 3rd Black Belt and first Adult Black Belt. Congratulates to Santos on his phenomenal performance!

Anthony Torres

After 20 years of MMA and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Anthony Torres received his Black Belt from Professors Sean Huff and Paul Nava. Anthony  has been in the UFC and was even a cast member on the Ultimate Fighter Season 2. in 2016 Anthony was a Silver medalist in the Absolute division at the IBJJF No-Gi World Championship and will  be competing at Black Belt this December in California at the 2017 IBJJF No-Gi World Championships.  

Efrain Valenzuela

Efrain was promoted to the rank of Blue Belt by Professor Sean Huff and 7x world champion Professor Paul Nava! After winning 5 Gold medals at white belt it was definitely time to move him up to the next level! Excellent job Efrain!

Chris Malterre

Chris was Promoted to the  rank of Black Belt on 5/27/2017 by Professors Paul Nava and Sean Huff of the Ares Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu organization. Chris  has competed in the IBJJF and AZBJJF and was also French National Judo Champion as a youth. Chris spent 6.5 years as a Brown Belt and is also a former Navy SEAL. Great job Chris!

Santos Rene Rivera

Santos traveled half the way around the world to compete in one of the most prestigious Professional Jiu-Jitsu competitions ,  Abu Dhabi 2017 World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship‎.

Santos  went 3-1 taking home the Bronze medal and $1000! This was Santos 3rd professional Jiu-Jitsu competition. It was an amazing proformance as he defeated two super tough Brazilian fighters and submitted an Atos World Champion! 

Justin Rascon

Justin Rascon  is a Professional MMA fighter from Tucson ,Arizona who recently fought on National Television. Justin earned his Purple Belt from Professor Sean Huff  on May 17, 2017 . After many victories and countless practices at Blue Belt , Justin was ready to wear the Purple Belt! Way to go Justin!

Anthony Torres

Former UFC fighter Anthony Torres gets the Silver Medal in the Open Class of the Brown Belt Master 2 and the Bronze Medal in his weight class. This was Anthony's first time in the IBJJF and he took 2nd and 3rd in the 2016 NO-GI World Championships. Way to go Stud.

Santos Rene Rivera

Defeats two Brazilians and a Japanese opponent in dominating fashion to take home the Gold in Long Beach.  It was him most dominate performance thus far at the Brown Belt level. 

Ivan Vachkov

Yet another dominating performance submitting all his opponents and winning Gold for the second year in a row in Long Beach at Blue Belt. Way to go Ivan!

Ashley Hom

Had a dominating performance as she went up by 35 points, then hit an Arm-bar submission in the Final. This is Ashley's 5th Gold medal this year alone! Amazing job Ashley

Mikey Balone

Gets the Silver Medal at the 2016 SJJIF World Tournament in Long Beach, California. Mikey had the honor to fight a tough AOJ competitor in the finals. We are extremely proud of Mikeys growth in Jiu-Jitsu and as an individual. 

Santos Rene Rivera

Santos competed in the 2016 Abu Daubi Grand Slam Jiu-Jitsu Tournament in Los Angeles. Santos took home the Gold Medal in the NO-GI event beating his first opponent 12-0, and Second 2-0. This was the 1st time Santos has competed in this prestigious event. Santos competed in the Brown Belt division for the 1st time and won his first tournament at the Brown Belt level.

Daniel Angulo

Daniel recently took home Silver and Gold medals at the NAGA Arizona event held in Phoenix AZ. Daniel received his much overdue Grey-White Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Daniel has excellent wrestling as well as Jiu-Jitsu.

Sean Huff

Black Belt Sean Huff AKA Sean Alexander wins his 1st match at Master Worlds, as a Black Belt, and in the IBJJF! Sean Competed in the Masters 2 168lb division at the 2016 Master Worlds in Las Vegas.

Ivan Vachkov

Wins three of four matches at the 2016 Master Worlds in Las Vegas. Ivan beat some really good Blue Belts. Ivan had a perfect game plan of playing top and showed much improved skill, especially passing the guard.

Kyle Valencia

Kyle took home the Gold at the DAN Tournament in 2016 at Nava BJJ in Mesa. Kyle has also competed in the IBJJF, but never in his natural weight class of 167. 

Kyle has been training with North Side since he was a beginner white belt and has excellent technique and is an outstanding teacher as well as one tough roll. 

Santos Rene Rivera

Santos is North Side BJJ's 1st student to go from white belt to Brown Belt. Multiple winner of AZ State Championships, a NO-GI World Championship, Gold at IBJJF San jose & Las Vegas Open, Silver at 2015 Pan American games, Gold Jiu-Jitsu World Leauge, Silver at 2014 SJJIF Worlds, Silver at IBJJF Summer Open. All at Purple Belt etc.  

Brandon Davis

Brandon has participated in more tournaments than any other white belt at North Side. Brandon took Silver at the 2016 IBJJF San Jose Open, Bronze at the State Championships, lost to the Brazilian Pan Am champion, and continues to improve every single day. Oss

Patrick O'Sullivan

Patrick was promoted to Blue Belt on 6/18/2016 by Black Belt Sean Huff and Paul Nava. This year Patty has won Gold at the Pan American games and took Silver at the World Championship.

Patrick O'Sullivan

Patrick takes the Silver Medal at the IBJJF World Championships in Long Beach. 

Patrick has made the Podium in the two toughest tournaments in the world in 2016, winning Gold in the Pan American Games. 

Sean Huff

Sean Huff recieves his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt from 7X IBJJF World Champion

Paul Nava. The promotion took place at Nava BJJ in Mesa AZ on May 1st 2016. Sean began his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu journey in 2004. Before that Sean trained Judo and MMA under Steve Owen at Tucson Dojo aka Rincon. Sean had the opportunity to train with Drew Fickett, Walid Zarifi, Don Frye, Rich Moreno, Rainey Martinez, Joey Rivera, Sam Sotelo, Amos Sotelo, Vincinte Medina, Chris Valdez, and many others from 98-04. Sean also began training Thai Boxing under Kru Aaron Haynes in 2010.

Greg Edwards

Greg Edwards wins his MMA debut at Casino Del Sol in Tucson. Way to go Greg!
BJJ World Champion Mike Melki, Pro MMA phenom Drakkar Klose, Fighter Greg Edwards, Head Instructor Sean Huff, and Pro MMA fighter Justin Rascon.

Patrick O'Sullivan 

Takes home the Gold Medal at the IBJJF Pan American Championships in LA. Competition was super tough as this is the 2nd largest tournament in the world today. Way to go Patty! It was also Patty's birthday and St. Patrick's day! 

North Side Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu gets NEW Zebra Mats for the Academy.

Ares BJJ

North Side Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is proud to be a part of not just Nava BJJ but also Ares BJJ. Please check out for more information.

Pic: Samir Chantre, Sean Huff, and Osvaldo Queixinho Moizinho

Sean Huff

Sean Huff had a dominating performance at Brown Belt winning his match without a point scored on him. Sean had to drop over 12 pounds in about 4 days to make the 167.5 lb weight allowance for the AZ Open. After this victory Sean has now won AZSBJJF Gold Medals at Blue, Purple, and Brown Belt!

Santos Rene Rivera

What more can be said about North Side BJJ's top student? Santos has never lost a match in the state of Arizona. In the AZ Open he went up to the 141lb weight class and took home the Gold medal again! He had matches against two absolute studs and came out on top. Amazing job Santoro!

Kaytlin F

Kaytlin took home the Gold medal in her 1st Jiu-Jitsu tournament ever! She had several tough matches and her guard retention was absolutely brilliant. Kaytlin has a bright future in Jiu-Jitsu and is definitely one to watch for in the future.

The Balone Brothers

Mikey took Gold and Brenn took home the Bronze in the AZ Open. Mikey Balone had a beautiful triangle choke victory and another match about to end the same way but time ran out. Brenn showed true heart to come back after being down 6-0 to almost win. I am very proud of these boys as they were the 1st two kids that I started training over 5 years ago!

Bobby Bennington

Bobby B took home the Bronze Medal at the AZ Open in Phoenix. Bobby submitted his first opponent with a belly down strait ankle lock and lost by one advantage to a super tough Macaraba trained student. Bobby looked awesome at his first tournament at Blue Belt!

Brandon Davis

Brandon Davis takes the Bronze Medal home at the AZ Open in Phoenix. Brandon submitted his 1st opponent with an Ezekiel choke from the mounted position and hit a beautiful tri-pod sweep. Every tournament we see him get better and better. Congrats BD.

Santos Rene Rivera

Wins the Gold at the IBJJF San Jose Open. Santos defeated all his opponents by submission. Santos continues to improve in the diversity of his BJJ game.

With the Pan Am Games and the World Championship coming up, look for Santos to show his amazing skills in the future.

Ernesto Fuentes

Ernesto was a man on fire in the IBJJF San Jose Open. He went up a weight class and submitted all his opponents, winning Gold in his 1st IBJJF Tournament. At just 20 years of age Ernesto has a bright future in BJJ as he is already a 3 stripe Blue Belt and his passion MMA. 

Brandon Davis

Brandon Davis took home the Silver Medal in the IBJJF San Jose Open. Brandon used a punch choke, and superior positioning to get to the finals where he faced a lifelong wrestler and lost on points. Look for Brandon to have a big year.

Justin Rascon

Takes home the Bronze Medal at the 3rd DAN Tournament at Nava BJJ in Mesa AZ. Congratulates to Justin on competing in his 1st tournament as a Blue Belt and even went up a weight class.

Kyle Valencia

Takes home Gold at the 3rd DAN Tournament in Mesa, AZ. Kyle used his superior Judo and BJJ techniques to win his match with two big throws! The DAN Tournament took place at NAVA BJJ.

NSBJJ Promotions with 

7X IBJJF World Champion Paul Nava

Blue Belt - Loren, David, Sam, & Bobby.

Brown Belt - Mark Moore

Kids - Grey Black - Hooks Hucklebee

         Grey - Ella 

         Grey White - Nickle B, Julian, Lexa

Congratulations To All Who Advanced In Rank

Santos Rene Rivera

Santos wins the Gold Medal at the 2015 IBJJF NO-GI World Championship. Santos becomes the first Tucson-an to win the  Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu World Champion in the Adult class since Ryan Beauregard did in 2009. Stanos started with NSBJJ as a white Belt.

Mike Melki

Mike wins the 2015 IBJJF NO-GO World Championship at Brown Belt 154lbs Master 1. Mike showed total dominance in his finals match and also beat others on his way to the Gold Medal in Long Beach CA. 

Paul Nava

Paul won his sixth IBJJF World Championship!

Paul was a man on fire as he won match after match showing the world why he is one of the great BJJ players of our time!

Amazing performance Paul

Mark "Hulk" Moore

Mark took home the Silver Medal at the IBJJF Masters World Championships in Las Vegas. 

Congratulations Mark!

Alexander Mehlhoff

Wins the Bronze Medal at the Masters IBJJF World Championship in Las Vegas.

Alex competed in the Super-Heavy Weight Blue belt class. He showed the heart of a lion and showed his beautiful guard game throughout the tournament!

Justin Rascon

Earns his Blue Belt by winning Gold at the IBJJF Las Vegas Summer Open and sometimes trains more than three times a day! 

Congratulations Justin!

Justin has a bright future in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

North Side Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Results
August 29 2015 NAGA Arizona results:

Courtney Middleton - Gold
Mercedes White - Gold(Gi) Bronze (Nogi)
Camron Tutas - Gold(Gi) Gold (Gi) Gold(NG)
Loren Kersted - Gold
Anthony Hooks - Gold
Van Birchak - Gold (Gi)
Adiv Rodriguez - Gold
Mikey Balone - Silver
Brenn Balone - Silver (Gi) Bronze (Nogi)

It was an amazing effort put in by all that decided to compete. Congratulations to everyone who competed and learned!

Mike "King" Melki

Mike has an amazing performance at the 2015 Las Vegas Open winning Gold in his weight class and getting Silver in the Open weight class. Mike even beat a 200lb 4 stripe Brown Belt in the Absolute! Mike is a beast.

Justin Rascon

Had a dominating performance submitting his first opponent and then defeating the US National Champion and won Gold.

Santos Rene Rivera 

Wins two Matches at the IBJJF Vegas Open, and gets his first sub win by Armbar at the Purple Belt. Santos also jumped into the absolute weight class to take on a 200lb Cobrina 4 Stripe Purple Belt and was winning the match 9-6 before getting caught. Santos had a truly amazing performance.

Courtney Middleton

Gets the silver Medal in her IBJJF and Jiu-Jitsu debut. Courtney showed the heart of a lion after being down 11-0, she went on an 8-0 run herself and almost got the submission win. Congratulates to Courtney, we look forward to watching her progress!

Brian O'Brian

Showed the heart of a lion jumping up two weight classes and almost beating the heavyweight National Champion taking Bronze!

Justin Rascon

Wins his 1st Professional MMA Fight as the Co-Main Event in the WFF MMA Organization. 

Justin is now (1-1) as a Professional MMA fighter.

Josh "Stretch" Medina

Earns his Purple Belt on 7/25/2015.

In addition to many Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Tournaments Josh Medina also has Six cage fights and four 1st round submission wins!

Grant Peck &

 Buggy W. Benavidez

A big congratulates to Buggy and Grant for earning their Grey/Black Belt.

Both of these guys have a lot of potential and are as tough as they come.  

2015 Arizona State Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Championships 

Kids results:

State Champion - Adiv Rodriguez (White)

State Champion - Grant Peck (Grey)
Silver Medalist - Nicholas Small (White)
Silver Medalist - Buggy Benevedez (Grey)
Bronze Medalist - Julian Small (White)
Bronze Medalist - Issac Paul (Grey)
Bronze Medalist - Nicholas Paul (Grey)
Bronze Medalist - Bella Benevedez (Grey)
Bronze Medalist - Ella Paul (Grey)
Bentley Benjamin went 1-1

Brenn Balone

Wins the Gold Medal and his first AZSBJJFState Championship at the Blue Belt

Way to go Beast!

Grant Peck

Wins the 2015 AZSBJJF State Championship at the Grey/yellow Belt.

Grant showed the heart of a lion and had the proformance of the tournament!

David Kriser

Wins the Gold Medal at the AZSBJJF State Championship,by verbal submission after a perfectly executed takedown.

Sam Stephens

Wins the Gold Medal at the 2015 AZSBJJF State Championship in Phoenix, AZ

Adiv Rodriguez

Wins the Gold Medal and his 1st AZSBJJF State Championship.

Adiv submitted both of his opponents with two different Lapel choke submissions.

Brenn Belone 

Wins the IBJJF World Championship


White Belt Juvinile 141lbs

Brenn had an amazing showing beating opponents from Mexico and France

Bobby Bennington

Takes home a Bronze Medal at the IBJJF Las Vegas Open

181LBS White Belt

Santos Rene Rivera

Takes the Gold Medal at IBJJF LAS VEGAS Open

141LBS Purple Belt

Todd Marrs

is promoted to Purple belt after winning all 3 matches at the AZ Open by Submission

Santos Rene Rivera

gets Silver at the 2015 Pan American Championships at Purple Rooster
Adult Male