AKA Jiu-Jitsu Coach Leandro Vieira: Why Islam Makhachev is the Future

Aug 15, 2021


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When Islam Makhachev challenged Rafael dos Anjos, the Brazilian answered and tagged Khabib Nurmagomedov: “I accept to fight your friend if you return to face me after I beat him.”

The retired and undefeated champion never answered, but after the Ultimate Fighting Championship confirmed RDA vs. Makhachev at UFC 267 (Oct. 30 in Abu Dhabi) many in Brazil took it as the former champion had agreed to return to defend his protégée if he is to be beat.

Sherdog’s Brazilian correspondent Marcelo Alonso sought clarity by talking to American Kickboxing Academy jiu-jitsu coach Leandro Vieira.

“That might be a possibility. Khabib achieved all his goals, now he is pretty sure that the Makhachev era has started. But of course, if anyone beats his friend it makes total sense that he returns; but he really doesn’t believe that and me neither. Makhachev will be the champion pretty soon.”

Leandro also compared Khabib and Islam in training and revealed a funny rivalry between wrestling, jiu-jitsu and sambo practitioners at AKA in San Jose.

The black belt also made a curious revelation in the following interview: According to him, the knee control position that has been known worldwide as Khabib’s most dominant posture, came from the leg drag evolved by his brother Leonardo Vieira.

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