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Tag: undefeated

Rumor of the Day: Gunnar Nelson Headed to the UFC


(Nelson becomes the first man ever to successfully narfle the Garthok at the 2009 ADCC Absolute trials.) 

Crank up the Bjork and start cubing up the Hakarl, because it appears that Icelandic BJJ phenom and undefeated prospect Gunnar Nelson is headed to the UFC.

The 23 year-old welterweight is undoubtedly one of the hottest prospects outside of the UFC, collecting a perfect 9-0-1 record with just one of those wins making it outside of the first round. Nelson has not been to the scorecards since his debut fight — a draw against John Oleson — and has collected six of his nine stoppage wins by way of submission. FightersOnly were the first to break the news, stating that several close sources had already confirmed this report, though an official announcement from inside Nelson’s camp has yet to be made. There have been several rumors claiming that Nelson was headed to the UFC over the past few years, but this time it seems to be happening for serial.

After acquiring his BJJ black belt in just four years, Nelson first burst onto the MMA scene back in 2007, and gained incredible notoriety in 2009 when he defeated the much larger, multiple-time ADCC medalist and UFC veteran Jeff Monson in the first round of the 2009 ADCC Absolute trials. Nelson most recently scored a first round submission via armbar over Alexander Butenko back in February, his fourth straight to come by way of first round submission.

We know some of you Taters have been clamoring about Nelson for what feels like ages now, so it’s good to know that we might finally be able to see just what this kid is capable of in the near future. As will be the case with Hector Lombard and our buddy Ryan Jimmo, 2012 is looking like it could be a make or break year for prospects outside the UFC.

Lucky for you, CagePotato and Youtube have combined their powers to compile an extensive look at Nelson’s background, which awaits you below.

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The 10 Greatest Undefeated Fighters in MMA: 2012 Edition

In June 2010, we posted a list of the ten greatest fighters who had yet to take a loss. By November 2011, none of their perfect records were still intact, proving once again what a cruel bitch this sport is. Half of the fighters on our original list — Shane Carwin (#1), Megumi Fujii (#2), Ryan Bader (#6), Evan Dunham (#7), and Lyle Beerbohm (#10) — have even lost *twice* since then. So we decided to start over from scratch and come up with a new ranking of undefeated MMA fighters. Check it out, and let us know who you think will hold onto their ’0′ the longest. -BG

#1: DANIEL CORMIER (10-0, six wins by first-round stoppage)

Notable victories: Jeff Monson at Strikeforce: Overeem vs. Werdum (UD), Antonio Silva at Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Kharitonov (KO R1), Josh Barnett at Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Cormier (UD)

Next fight: TBA

The former collegiate wrestling star and Olympic competitor went through hell to get to where he is today. Less than three years after kicking off his MMA career, Cormier battled his way to a career-defining matchup against ex-UFC champ Josh Barnett — a catch-wrestling savant with four times as many fights on his pro record as Cormier — in the finals of Strikeforce’s Heavyweight Grand Prix. But Dan didn’t need to turn the meeting into a grappling match. As he also demonstrated against Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva in his previous outing, Cormier packs enough speed and punching-power to win fights with his striking alone. It’s only a matter of time before he enters the UFC to take on the best in the world, and we have a feeling he’ll make an immediate impact.

#2: MICHAEL CHANDLER (10-0, eight wins by stoppage)

Notable victories: Patricky Freire at Bellator 44 (UD), Eddie Alvarez at Bellator 58 (sub R4), Akihiro Gono at Bellator 67 (TKO R1)

Next fight: TBA

Michael Chandler is the perfect example of how a tournament can transform a fighter from unheralded prospect to breakout star. After winning his first two Bellator appearances by swift first-round stoppage in 2010, Chandler was invited to participate in the promotion’s season four lightweight tournament. The Xtreme Couture product sliced through it, starting with a first-round submission of Polish prodigy Marcin Held, and ending with a decision win over knockout artist Patricky “Pitbull” Freire in the finals. Then, Chandler did the unthinkable — he took the lightweight belt from Eddie Alvarez, choking out the formerly untouchable Bellator champ in the fourth round of an insane Fight of the Year candidate last November. (A follow-up non-title match against Akihiro Gono was little more than a one-minute showcase of his killer instinct.) In eight months, Chandler went from 5-0 up-and-comer to newly-minted champion with a win over a top-ten ranked opponent. Is it okay if we use the “meteoric rise” cliché, just this once?

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