Lucas “Hulk” Barbosa has decided to tackle a new challenge at the IBJJF’s No-Gi Worlds, which takes place this weekend in Daly City, Calif. The current medium heavyweight champion, the Atos fighter has moved up to try for gold among heavyweights. The division includes the likes of Vitor Oliveira (GFTeam), Arnaldo Maidana (Checkmat), Roberto Torralbas (Lloyd Irvin) and William Bush (RCJ).
“In 2015 I won at medium heavyweight, and this year I want to fight at heavyweight and win gold again,” said Barbosa. “These are new challenges. I want to be a champion in different categories. Next year I may fight in yet another category — who knows? Maybe I’ll drop by middleweight or super-heavyweight. I’ll fight among the heavyweights with no pressure. I’m prepared to win and get this title.”
About how the presence or absence of the cloth changes things up for him, Barbosa said: “No-gi and gi BJJ are different things. My takedown game in the gi has a lot of seoi-nage and plenty of judo approaches. With no gi my takedowns are more like a wrestler’s, and my pass changes a bit, but with the same intensity. I think I do a better guard in no-gi; it’s a difference I have. I try to conciliate my two styles, gi and no-gi, at the same level.”