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Jorge Santiago Rodrigues (Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈʒɔʁʒi sɐ̃tʃiˈaɡu]; born October 9, 1980) is a retired Brazilian mixed martial artist. He was the first Sengoku Middleweight Champion and is the former Strikeforce Middleweight Grand Prix Champion. He has also competed for the UFC, King of the Cage, Titan FC, It's Showtime, and BodogFIGHT.

Jorge Santiago
Born (1980-10-09) October 9, 1980 (age 38)
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Other namesThe Sandman
Height6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight170 lb (77 kg; 12 st 2 lb)
DivisionWelterweight (2002-2005, 2013-present)
Reach74 in (190 cm)
StyleBJJ, Muay Thai
Fighting out ofBoca Raton, Florida
RankBlack belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu under Ricardo Liborio[1]
Years active2002 – 2013
Mixed martial arts record
By knockout10
By submission13
By decision2
By knockout6
By decision6
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Mixed martial arts careerEdit

Early careerEdit

Santiago started his mixed martial arts career at Reality Fighting 2 in 2002 with a win over Jose Rodriguez. In the following years Santago fought for Absolute Fighting Championships, King of the Cage, and a few other small organizations earning an 11–5 record.

Ultimate Fighting ChampionshipEdit

In 2006 he signed with Ultimate Fighting Championships, where he competed three times. He won his UFC debut at UFC Ultimate Fight Night 5 against Justin Levens by first round KO. He returned at UFC Fight Night 6 and UFC Fight Night 7, losing by KO to former WEC Middleweight Champion, Chris Leben in the second round and to Alan Belcher by KO in the third round. He then left the UFC.


In his first fight after leaving the UFC, Santiago was victorious against Andrei Semenov at the Bodog Fight: Clash of the Nations show in Russia. In his next fight he had to deal with longtime veteran Jeremy Horn and submitted Horn in the first round.

The next challenge for Santiago was the Strikeforce Middleweight tournament on November 16, 2007. Competing in the tournament as the underdog, Santiago won the Grand Prix by defeating Sean Salmon and Trevor Prangley on the same night.


Continuing on his path of success, Santiago became Middleweight Champion, by defeating Yuki Sasaki, Logan Clark, Siyar Bahadurzada, and Kazuhiro Nakamura. The last two fights were on the same night.

Santiago was then crowned World Victory Road's first Middleweight Champion by defeating the acclaimed Kazuo Misaki at World Victory Road Presents: Sengoku no Ran 2009.

He was set to face former UFC 12 Heavyweight Tournament Champion and former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, Vitor Belfort at Affliction: Trilogy, but the match was scrapped after the cancellation of the event.

Santiago then fought at World Victory Road Presents: Sengoku 11 against current KSW Middleweight Champion, Mamed Khalidov in a non-title bout. Khalidov won by first round knockout; Santiago's first loss since 2006.[2] He avenged this loss in March 2010 with a split decision victory over Khalidov at Sengoku 12.

Santiago defended his title for a second time when he defeated Kazuo Misaki via TKO at Sengoku 14 in August 2010.

Return to UFCEdit

On February 8, 2011, Santiago requested and was granted his release from World Victory Road. On February 16, he signed a multi-fight contract to return to the Ultimate Fighting Championship.[3]

Santiago lost in his UFC return to former WEC Light Heavyweight Champion Brian Stann at UFC 130 via TKO in the second round.

Santiago then lost by unanimous decision to Brazilian jiu-jitsu specialist Demian Maia at UFC 136.[4]

Following the loss to Maia, Santiago was released from the promotion.[5]


On March 2, 2012, Santiago won his return fight, knocking out Leonardo Pecanha with a straight right at 1:48 in the first round at Titan Fighting Championships 21 [6] On June 15, 2012 Santiago fought Justin Guthrie at Titan Fighting Championship 23 winning the fight via submission in the first round.


Santiago was re-signed by Strikeforce (now owned by the UFC's parent company Zuffa, LLC) in August 2012, where he was expected to drop to Welterweight for a bout with former King of the Cage Welterweight Champion Quinn Mulhern at Strikeforce: Melendez vs. Healy on September 29, 2012.[7] However, the event was cancelled the following month due to an injury to headliner Gilbert Melendez, and the Santiago/Mulhern bout was not rescheduled before Strikeforce's closure and absorption into the UFC in January 2013.

Third UFC StintEdit

Already signed with Strikeforce, and following his own back-to-back wins outside the organization, Santiago was called back to the UFC to take on Gunnar Nelson in a welterweight bout on February 16, 2013 at UFC on Fuel TV: Barão vs. McDonald, replacing an injured Justin Edwards.[8] Santiago lost the fight via unanimous decision and was subsequently released from the promotion for the third time.[9]

World Series of FightingEdit

Santiago signed with World Series of Fighting in 2013 and made his promotional debut on August 10, 2013 against Gerald Harris at WSOF 4. The bout had a confusing first round where Harris slammed Santiago and Harris believed he had tapped. However, the referee was stopping the action to deduct a point from Santiago for blatantly grabbing the cage during Harris' slam. Following the confusion, the fight continued and Santiago would go on to lose via unanimous decision.

Jorge Santiago announced on Dec. 14, 2013 to Ariel Helwani that he has retired from MMA competition.

Brazilian jiu-jitsu lineageEdit

Personal lifeEdit

Santiago is married. He has a daughter from a previous relationship.[10]

Championships and achievementsEdit

Mixed martial arts recordEdit

Professional record breakdown
37 matches 25 wins 12 losses
By knockout 10 6
By submission 13 0
By decision 2 6
Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Loss 25–12 Gerald Harris Decision (unanimous) WSOF 4 August 10, 2013 3 5:00 Ontario, California, United States
Loss 25–11 Gunnar Nelson Decision (unanimous) UFC on Fuel TV: Barão vs. McDonald February 16, 2013 3 5:00 London, England, United Kingdom
Win 25–10 Justin Guthrie Submission (inverted heel hook) TFC 23 June 15, 2012 1 1:34 Fort Riley, Kansas, United States
Win 24–10 Leonardo Pecanha KO (punches) TFC 21 March 2, 2012 1 1:48 Kansas City, Kansas, United States
Loss 23–10 Demian Maia Decision (unanimous) UFC 136 October 8, 2011 3 5:00 Houston, Texas, United States
Loss 23–9 Brian Stann KO (punches) UFC 130 May 28, 2011 2 4:29 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Fight of the Night
Win 23–8 Kazuo Misaki TKO (corner stoppage) World Victory Road Presents: Sengoku Raiden Championships 14 August 22, 2010 5 4:31 Tokyo, Japan Defended Sengoku Middleweight Championship; Fight of the Year
Win 22–8 Mamed Khalidov Decision (split) World Victory Road Presents: Sengoku Raiden Championships 12 March 7, 2010 5 5:00 Tokyo, Japan Defended Sengoku Middleweight Championship
Loss 21–8 Mamed Khalidov KO (punches) World Victory Road Presents: Sengoku 11 November 7, 2009 1 2:45 Tokyo, Japan Non title fight
Win 21–7 Kazuo Misaki Technical Submission (rear-naked choke) World Victory Road Presents: Sengoku no Ran 2009 January 4, 2009 5 3:26 Saitama, Japan Won Sengoku Middleweight Championship
Win 20–7 Kazuhiro Nakamura KO (punches) World Victory Road Presents: Sengoku 6 November 1, 2008 3 0:49 Saitama, Japan Sengoku Middleweight Grandprix 2008 Final Round
Win 19–7 Siyar Bahadurzada Submission (heel hook) World Victory Road Presents: Sengoku 6 November 1, 2008 1 1:10 Saitama, Japan Sengoku Middleweight Grandprix 2008 Semifinal Round
Win 18–7 Logan Clark Submission (arm-triangle choke) World Victory Road Presents: Sengoku 5 September 28, 2008 2 3:55 Tokyo, Japan Sengoku Middleweight Grandprix 2008 Opening Round
Win 17–7 Yuki Sasaki Submission (armbar) World Victory Road Presents: Sengoku 2 May 18, 2008 3 2:10 Tokyo, Japan
Win 16–7 Trevor Prangley TKO (knee to the body) Strikeforce: Four Men Enter, One Man Survives November 16, 2007 1 2:31 San Jose, California, United States Won Strikeforce Middleweight Grand Prix Final
Win 15–7 Sean Salmon KO (flying knee) Strikeforce: Four Men Enter, One Man Survives November 16, 2007 1 0:24 San Jose, California, United States Strikeforce Middleweight Grand Prix Semifinal
Win 14–7 Jeremy Horn Submission (triangle choke) Art of War 3: Monson vs. Rizzo September 1, 2007 1 3:02 Dallas, Texas, United States
Win 13–7 Andrei Semenov TKO (punches) Bodog Fight: Clash of the Nations April 14, 2007 2 4:48 St. Petersburg, Russia
Loss 12–7 Alan Belcher KO (head kick) UFC Fight Night: Sanchez vs. Riggs December 13, 2006 3 2:45 San Diego, California, United States
Loss 12–6 Chris Leben KO (punch) UFC Fight Night 6 August 17, 2006 2 0:35 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 12–5 Justin Levens KO (knee and punches) UFC Fight Night 5 June 28, 2006 1 2:13 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 11–5 Thomas Russell Submission (armbar) Fightfest 3 May 6, 2006 1 1:59 Youngstown, Ohio, United States
Win 10–5 Sydney Machado TKO (punches) Costa Rica: Fights 3 December 2, 2005 2 0:49 Costa Rica
Win 9–5 Leopoldo Serao TKO (punches) Full Throttle 5 November 4, 2005 1 0:43 Georgia, United States
Loss 8–5 Joey Villaseñor Decision (unanimous) KOTC 58: Prime Time August 5, 2005 3 5:00 San Jacinto, California, United States For King of the Cage Middleweight Championship
Loss 8–4 Jordan Radev Decision (unanimous) It's Showtime: Amsterdam Arena June 12, 2005 2 5:00 Amsterdam, Holland Debut at Middleweight
Win 8–3 Chris Liguori Submission (rear-naked choke) Euphoria: USA vs World February 26, 2005 1 3:27 Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States
Loss 7–3 Diego Sanchez Decision (unanimous) KOTC 37: Unfinished Business June 12, 2004 3 5:00 San Jacinto, California, United States For King of the Cage Welterweight Championship
Win 7–2 Takuya Wada Submission (armbar) Absolute Fighting Championships 7 February 27, 2004 1 1:52 Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States
Win 6–2 John Cronk Submission (armbar) KOTC 32: Bringing Heat January 24, 2004 2 0:54 Miami, Florida, United States
Loss 5–2 Keith Wisniewski KO (punches) Absolute Fighting Championships 6 December 6, 2003 3 2:14 Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States
Win 5–1 LaVerne Clark Submission (triangle choke) Hardcore Fighting Championships 2 October 18, 2003 1 2:17 Revere, Massachusetts, United States
Win 4–1 Derrick Noble Decision (unanimous) Absolute Fighting Championships 5 September 5, 2003 2 5:00 Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States
Loss 3–1 Manny Gamburyan KO (punch) KOTC 27: Aftermath August 10, 2003 1 0:21 San Jacinto, California, United States
Win 3–0 Justin Wieman Submission (triangle choke) Absolute Fighting Championships 4 July 19, 2003 1 4:11 Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States
Win 2–0 Jay Martin KO (punches) HOOKnSHOOT: Boot Camp 1.1 March 8, 2003 1 0:14 Evansville, Indiana, United States
Win 1–0 Jose Rodriguez Submission (knees) Reality Fighting 2 November 2, 2002 1 1:16 Wildwood, New Jersey, United States


  1. ^ T.P. Grant (June 19, 2012). "Judo Chop: Jorge Santiago's Inverted Heel Hook From Open Guard".
  2. ^ "Jorge Santiago to face Mamed Khalidov in "Sengoku 11th Battle" non-title affair". MMAjunkie. Archived from the original on 2009-10-16.
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Demian Maia meets Jorge Santiago at UFC 136". July 15, 2011. Archived from the original on November 10, 2013.
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^ Mike Whitman (August 23, 2012). "Thomson-Fodor, Santiago-Mulhern, Two Other Bouts Added to Strikeforce 'Melendez vs. Healy'".
  8. ^ Staff (January 23, 2013). "Justin Edwards out, Jorge Santiago in against Gunnar Nelson at UFC on FUEL TV 7". Archived from the original on January 25, 2013.
  9. ^ Staff (February 20, 2013). "UFC releases Jon Fitch, Vladimir Matyushenko, 14 others". Archived from the original on February 22, 2013.
  10. ^ "Jorge Santiago on life in the USA and getting back to the UFC". August 9, 2010. Archived from the original on August 4, 2012. Retrieved March 27, 2011.

External linksEdit

New championship 1st Sengoku Middleweight Champion
January 4, 2009 – February 8, 2011