Daniel Straus (MMA)

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Daniel Mason-Straus
BornDaniel Mason-Straus
(1984-07-27) July 27, 1984 (age 36)
Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
Height5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)
Weight145 lb (66 kg; 10.4 st)
Reach67 in (170 cm)
Fighting out ofCincinnati, Ohio, United States
TeamAmerican Top Team
Vision MMA
Years active2009–present
Mixed martial arts record
By knockout7
By submission4
By decision15
By knockout2
By submission5
By decision2
Notable school(s)Sycamore High School
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Daniel Mason-Straus (born July 27, 1984), is an American professional mixed martial artist currently competing in the Featherweight division of Bellator MMA, and is the former two-time Bellator Featherweight Champion. A professional competitor since 2009, Straus has also formerly competed for Shark Fights.


Straus was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, and grew up in the nearby suburb of Sycamore Township. Straus came from a troubled household and by the time he was a junior in high school he was living on his own and supporting himself, which included involvement in criminal activities. Straus was a highly successful (and highly controversial) high school wrestler at Sycamore High School. As a freshman in the (112 lbs.) weight class, Straus was an alternate for the state tournament and in his sophomore season he went 2-2 in the state tournament. In his junior season, Straus finished third in the state in Division I (135 lbs.) and in his senior year he was ruled academically ineligible and missed the second half of the season (including the state tournament). However, he was given a wild card berth into the NHSCA Senior Nationals (high school senior national championship) and won the tournament. Straus is considered by some in the Ohio wrestling media to be one of the best Ohio wrestlers of the decade (2001–2010) and one of the greatest Ohio high school wrestlers to never win a state title. In addition to wrestling, Straus also played soccer and ran for the track and field team in high school. After graduating, Straus moved to Florida and worked in maintenance, but was arrested on robbery charges and was incarcerated from 2004-2007.[1][2][3]

Mixed martial arts career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Straus returned to Cincinnati after his release from prison and was introduced to mixed martial arts by a friend who was a former high school wrestling opponent. He invited Straus to come train with him at Team Vision and Straus made his professional debut in February 2009.[3]

Shark Fights[edit]

Straus was a late replacement for Marcus Hicks at Shark Fights 13: Jardine vs. Prangley where he beat WEC veteran Karen Darabedyan via unanimous decision.[4]

Bellator MMA[edit]

Straus made his Bellator debut on June 24, 2010, at Bellator 23 where he defeated Chad Hinton via unanimous decision.

In January 2011, Bellator announced that Straus would be part of the Bellator Season Four Featherweight Tournament. In the quarter finals, Straus fought Nazareno Malegarie.[5] Straus defeated Malegarie via unanimous decision to move on to the semifinals and give Malegarie the first loss of his career. The fight won Fight of the Night honors.

At Bellator 41, Straus competed in the semifinals of the Season Four Tournament against Kenny Foster. Straus controlled the fight for the first two rounds before he finished Foster via guillotine choke submission and moved on to the finals of the tournament. Straus met Patricio Freire in the Season Four Tournament Final at Bellator 45. He lost the fight via unanimous decision.

Straus returned in the Bellator Season Six Featherweight Tournament that started on March 9, 2012. He defeated Jeremy Spoon via unanimous decision in the opening round at Bellator 60. In the semifinal round, Straus faced Mike Corey at Bellator 65 and again won by unanimous decision. In the finals, Straus faced Marlon Sandro at Bellator 68 and won via unanimous decision. This win earned him a title shot and rematch against Featherweight Champion Pat Curran, who had previous beaten Straus in 2009.

At Bellator 78, Straus took a fight to keep himself busy while waiting for his title shot. He fought Royce Gracie black belt, Alvin Robinson, defeating him via submission in the second round.

Straus was scheduled to face Pat Curran on April 4, 2013 for the Featherweight Title at Bellator 95.[6] However, on February 26, it was announced that Straus had broken his hand and had to pull out of the fight.[7]

The Featherweight Championship fight between Curran and Straus took place on November 2, 2013 at Bellator 106.[8] Straus won the fight by unanimous decision to become the new Bellator Featherweight Champion.

Straus is scheduled to face Pat Curran for the third time at Bellator 112 on March 14, 2014.[9] Straus publicly expressed his displeasure in having to face Curran again so soon after beating him, going so far as to say he believes Bellator wants Curran as champion.[10] However, he also stated it is his job to fight and he welcomed the bout. At the weigh ins for Bellator 112, Straus had to cut his hair to make weight.[11] He lost the bout via rear naked choke in the fifth round.

Straus faced Justin Wilcox in the main event at Bellator 127 on October 3, 2014.[12] He won the fight via knockout in the first round.

Straus challenged Patrício Freire for the Bellator Featherweight Championship in a rematch at Bellator 132 on January 16, 2015.[13] Freire won the back-and-forth fight in the fourth round via a rear-naked choke submission.

Straus faced undefeated prospect Henry Corrales at Bellator 138 on June 19, 2015.[14] He won the fight via submission in the second round.

Straus had a third fight with Freire on November 6, 2015 at Bellator 145.[15] He won the fight via unanimous decision to reclaim the Bellator Featherweight Championship.

Over a year since his last fight, Straus returned to defend his title against Freire in a fourth fight in the main event at Bellator 178 on April 21, 2017. After a back-and-forth first round, Straus lost the bout via a submission due to a guillotine choke early in the second round.[16]

Straus faced Emmanuel Sanchez at Bellator 184 on October 6, 2017.[17] He lost the fight via triangle choke submission in the third round.

After a 17-month long layoff due to severe injuries suffered in a motorcycle accident, Straus returned to the cage on March 29, 2019 at Bellator 219 and faced Shane Krutchen. He was victorious by way of first round submission.[18]

Straus next faced Derek Campos in the opening round of the Bellator Featherweight World Grand Prix at Bellator 226 on September 7, 2019. He lost the bout via unanimous decision.[19]

Personal life[edit]

Straus has a daughter.[20]

On March 1, 2013, Straus was arrested in Fort Lauderdale, Florida after his vehicle was pulled over. He faced charges of driving with a suspended license, possession of more than 20 grams of marijuana, more than three grams of synthetic cannabis, possession of drug paraphernalia, and possession of MDMA.[21]

In the early morning hours of December 17, 2017, Straus was involved in an accident while riding his Suzuki GSX-R1000 motorcycle on State Road 7 in Dade County, Florida. He was unconscious for an unknown amount of time, and was unable to move his extremities upon regaining consciousness. His passenger was able to get help and Straus was transported to hospital. Although no alcohol was involved, it is still unknown what caused the accident. His passenger was unharmed. It would take eight months and extreme physical therapy before Straus could walk again on his own. Once able to move again without assistance, Daniel Straus made the decision to get back into physical shape and continue his professional MMA career. His long journey will culminate with his comeback fight at Bellator 219 on March, 29, 2019.[needs update]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Mixed martial arts[edit]

Amateur Wrestling[edit]

  • National High School Coaches Association
    • NHSCA Senior High School National Championship (2003)
    • NHSCA Senior All-American (2003)
  • Ohio High School Athletic Association
    • OHSAA Division I High School State Championship Third Place (2002)
    • OHSAA Division I All-State (2002)
    • Sycamore High School Record for Best Season Record (42-1; 2003)

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Professional record breakdown
35 matches 26 wins 9 losses
By knockout 7 2
By submission 4 5
By decision 15 2
Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Loss 26–9 Derek Campos Decision (unanimous) Bellator 226 September 7, 2019 3 5:00 San Jose, California, United States Bellator Featherweight World Grand Prix Opening Round.
Win 26–8 Shane Kruchten Submission (rear-naked choke) Bellator 219 March 29, 2019 1 3:53 Temecula, California, United States Lightweight bout.
Loss 25–8 Emmanuel Sanchez Submission (triangle choke) Bellator 184 October 6, 2017 3 1:56 Thackerville, Oklahoma, United States
Loss 25–7 Patricio Freire Submission (guillotine choke) Bellator 178 April 21, 2017 2 0:37 Uncasville, Connecticut, United States Lost the Bellator Featherweight World Championship.
Win 25–6 Patricio Freire Decision (unanimous) Bellator 145 November 6, 2015 5 5:00 St. Louis, Missouri, United States Won the Bellator Featherweight World Championship.
Win 24–6 Henry Corrales Submission (guillotine choke) Bellator 138 June 19, 2015 2 3:47 St. Louis, Missouri, United States
Loss 23–6 Patricio Freire Submission (rear-naked choke) Bellator 132 January 16, 2015 4 4:49 Temecula, California, United States For the Bellator Featherweight World Championship.
Win 23–5 Justin Wilcox KO (punches) Bellator 127 October 3, 2014 1 0:50 Temecula, California, United States
Loss 22–5 Pat Curran Submission (rear-naked choke) Bellator 112 March 14, 2014 5 4:46 Hammond, Indiana, United States Lost the Bellator Featherweight World Championship
Win 22–4 Pat Curran Decision (unanimous) Bellator 106 November 2, 2013 5 5:00 Long Beach, California, United States Won the Bellator Featherweight Championship
Win 21–4 Alvin Robinson Submission (rear-naked choke) Bellator 78 October 26, 2012 2 4:51 Dayton, Ohio, United States
Win 20–4 Marlon Sandro Decision (unanimous) Bellator 68 May 11, 2012 3 5:00 Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States Bellator Season Six Featherweight Tournament Final
Win 19–4 Mike Corey Decision (unanimous) Bellator 65 April 13, 2012 3 5:00 Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States Bellator Season Six Featherweight Tournament Semifinal
Win 18–4 Jeremy Spoon Decision (unanimous) Bellator 60 March 9, 2012 3 5:00 Hammond, Indiana, United States Bellator Season Six Featherweight Tournament Quarterfinal
Win 17–4 Jason Dent Decision (unanimous) NAAFS: Caged Fury 15 October 15, 2011 5 5:00 Cleveland, Ohio, United States Won and unified NAAFS Pro Series Lightweight Championship
Loss 16–4 Patricio Freire Decision (unanimous) Bellator 45 May 21, 2011 3 5:00 Lake Charles, Louisiana, United States Bellator Season Four Featherweight Tournament Final
Win 16–3 Kenny Foster Submission (guillotine choke) Bellator 41 April 16, 2011 3 3:48 Yuma, Arizona, United States Bellator Season Four Featherweight Tournament Semifinal
Win 15–3 Nazareno Malegarie Decision (unanimous) Bellator 37 March 19, 2011 3 5:00 Concho, Oklahoma, United States Bellator Season Four Featherweight Tournament Quarterfinal, Featherweight debut
Win 14–3 Karen Darabedyan Decision (unanimous) Shark Fights 13: Jardine vs Prangley September 11, 2010 3 5:00 Amarillo, Texas, United States
Win 13–3 Joe Pearson TKO (punches) XFO 36: Outdoor War 6 August 14, 2010 2 4:04 Island Lake, Illinois, United States
Win 12–3 Chad Hinton Decision (unanimous) Bellator 23 June 24, 2010 3 5:00 Louisville, Kentucky, United States
Win 11–3 Travis Perzynski Decision (unanimous) ICE: International Combat Events 45 March 13, 2010 3 5:00 Forest Park, Ohio, United States
Win 10–3 Frank Caraballo TKO (punches) NAAFS: Caged Fury 9 February 20, 2010 5 3:57 Cleveland, Ohio, United States Won NAAFS Interim Pro Series Lightweight Championship.
Win 9–3 Gideon Ray Decision (unanimous) XFO 33 January 23, 2010 3 5:00 Chicago, Illinois, United States
Win 8–3 Joe Heiland Decision (unanimous) NAAFS: Night of Champions 2009 December 5, 2009 3 5:00 Akron, Ohio, United States
Win 7–3 Patrick Ferm TKO (punches) XFO 32 October 10, 2009 1 1:50 New Munster, Wisconsin, United States
Win 6–3 Tim Troxell TKO (elbows and punches) Xtreme Caged Combat: Cops vs. Cons October 3, 2009 1 3:51 Reading, Pennsylvania, United States
Win 5–3 Mitch Lyons TKO (punches) Indiana Xtreme Fighting 1: Wildcard June 26, 2009 3 2:13 Rising Sun, Indiana, United States
Loss 4–3 Pat Curran KO (punches) XFO 29 April 17, 2009 2 1:31 Lakemoor, Illinois, United States
Win 4–2 Mike Baskis Decision (unanimous) ICF: Breakout April 11, 2009 3 5:00 Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
Win 3–2 Lester Caslow Decision (split) Extreme Challenge: Mayhem at the Marina March 28, 2009 3 5:00 Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States
Win 2–2 Tim Cook TKO (punches) ICF: Turfwar March 14, 2009 2 0:11 Florence, Kentucky, United States
Loss 1–2 Scott Bickerstaff TKO (punches) MMA Big Show: Retribution March 7, 2009 1 N/A Switzerland County, Indiana, United States
Win 1–1 David Silva Decision (unanimous) XFO 28 February 27, 2009 3 5:00 Lakemoor, Illinois, United States
Loss 0–1 Jay Ellis Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) XFO: New Blood February 7, 2009 2 2:46 Delray Beach, Florida, United States

See also[edit]


  1. ^ [1] Archived September 3, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ [2] Archived March 12, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ a b [3] Archived October 29, 2013, at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ "Injuries Shuffle Shark Fights 13 Deck". Sherdog.
  5. ^ Michael David Smith (1 February 2011). "Bellator Adds Nazareno Malegarie, Featherweight With MMA's Best Record". MMA Fighting.
  6. ^ "Pat Curran vs. Daniel Straus Headlines April 4 Bellator Card". mmaweekly.com.com. 2013-02-06.
  7. ^ "Broken hand cancels Daniel Straus' title fight with Pat Curran at Bellator 95". mmajunkie.com. 2013-02-26.
  8. ^ Dave Reid (2013-08-27). "Bellator's Nov 2nd PPV Gets 3rd Title Fight With Pat Curran vs Daniel Straus". mmainsider.net. Retrieved August 27, 2013.
  9. ^ Dann Stupp. "Daniel Straus vs. Pat Curran III headlines Bellator 112, War Machine returns". MMAjunkie.com. Retrieved 2014-01-14.
  10. ^ "Patricio Freire on Bellator passing him over: Where the title shots are earned, not given' is pure bulls--t'". Bloodyelbow.com. January 13, 2014. Retrieved January 14, 2014.
  11. ^ Jason Nawara (March 14, 2014). "Daniel Straus cuts his hair to make weight". mmanuts.com. Retrieved March 14, 2014.
  13. ^ "Bellator 132 Fight Card". bellator.com. Archived from the original on 2014-11-19. Retrieved 2014-12-29.
  14. ^ Marc Raimondi (May 5, 2015). "Daniel Straus vs. Henry Corrales added to loaded Bellator 138 in June". mmafighting.com.
  15. ^ "Bellator 145 Fight Card". bellator.com. 2015-11-06.
  16. ^ Steven Marrocco (April 21, 2017). "Bellator 178 results: 'Pitbull' Freire submits Straus in fourth encounter to recapture title". mmajunkie.com.
  17. ^ Staff (July 14, 2017). "Bellator 184 set for Oct. 6 with champ Eduardo Dantas vs. Darrion Caldwell, Emmanuel Sanchez vs. Daniel Straus". mmajunkie.com.
  18. ^ "Bellator 219 Results: Awad vs. Girtz". MMAFighting.com. March 19, 2019.
  19. ^ "Bellator 226 Results: Bader vs. Kongo". MMA Fighting.com. September 8, 2019.
  20. ^ "Straus now training to be world champ". ESPN.com.
  21. ^ "Daniel Straus, Bellator Season 7 Featherweight winner, arrested". ESPN.com.
  22. ^ "MMAjunkie's 'Fight of the Month' for November is a classic Bellator title battle - MMAjunkie". MMAjunkie.

External links[edit]