"Our team is only going to get stronger. We've just signed up Todd Duffee and Gray Maynard to be part of the team. We've got Leandro Vieira coming in as our new jiujitsu coach and he's one of the best teachers in the world," Javier Mendes, head coach said.
Vieira's CheckMat academy in Sao Paolo, Brazil is one of the most successful teams competing in Brazil's region circuit. The addition of Vieira is to fill the void left by AKA's previous jiu jitsu coach, Dave Camarillo, who departed AKA recently. UFC welterweight, Josh Koscheck, has also separated his ties with AKA citing tensions with Mendes.
For Maynard who was a long time member of Xtreme Couture, he says his change in gyms to better develop his skills. Maynard also points out that he has not signed exclusively with AKA which could mean his stay at the San Jose based gym is only temporary, possibly returning to Xtreme Couture in the future.
Duffee, who once considered a bright heavyweight prospect in the UFC, has lost his last two fights and has not fought since his last bout in late December 2010. A free agent for some time, perhaps his move to AKA can revitalize his career.