Ricardo Liborio earned his black belt from Carlson Gracie in 1993 after a dozen years of training and went on to co-found Brazil Top Team in 2000, along with Murilo Bustamante, Luis Duarte, and Mario Sperry. In 2001 Liborio founded American Top Team, along with American hotel executive Dan Lambert, who himself was a student, and in management.
American Top Team
The team is currently one of the best, or the best in mixed martial arts, with three UFC champions. There are now over 40 ATT affiliate gyms, with a 20,000 square foot headquarters in Coconut Creek, Florida. However, in an unexpected turn of events, Ricardo Liborio announced he has left ATT. The news came after ATT fighter Colby Covington’s ugly outburst in Brazil at UFC Fight Night 119 on Saturday.
“I feel that I must make a statement in light of the comments made by Colby Covington along with the amount of messages sent to me from Brazil, the United States, and from all over the world,” wrote Liborio on his social network, in English and Brazilian Portuguese.
“I’m here to state that I am no longer with American Top Team. Also, I absolutely do not condone any behavior that instigates hate, prejudice, or bullying of any kind. It upsets me to see the sport taking this direction of blatant disrespect. It’s unsportsmanlike, but it also fosters and promotes a culture of cruelty towards others. Combat Sports should always represent the qualities of humility, empathy, and respect.
“I dedicated my life to the Martial arts, and to the formation and growth of this team. I can’t discuss the reasons for my departure from ATT. At some point, I will. For the time being, I want the members of ATT to know that they will always be in my heart.” – Ricardo Liborio.
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