Wallid Ismail is an iconic figure in BJJ and MMA. A Vale Tudo fighter and MMA pioneer, his name is synonymous with Brazil’s old school tough guys. He holds high profile wins over members of the Gracie family and is well known for his aggressive style. Click “Read More” for show notes!


  • Growing up in the Amazon and his predisposition for fighting
  • Wallid’s clever tactic he used going into his first tournament
  • The decision to move to Rio as a teenager to pursue a higher level of training
  • The time he challenged a random “skinny guy” to spar on his first day at Carlson Gracie’s academy
  • His love for pressure passing
  • Being one of the first sponsored BJJ athletes
  • Loyalty in modern Jiu-Jitsu
  • His greatest lesson from Master Carlson Gracie
  • How he made the spark that lit the feud between Jiu-Jitsu and Luta Livre
  • Stories from the BJJ/Luta Livre rivalry, Rickson Gracie vs Hugo Duarte
  • His intense feud with Ryan, Ralph and Renzo Gracie
  • Fighting Royce Gracie on national television
  • How he has changed as a person over time
  • How his feelings towards Renzo have changed over time
  • The biggest moment of his MMA career
  • The reason he decided to retire
  • Life as a fight promoter / the foundation of Jungle Fight MMA