Stipe Miocic

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Stipe Miocic
Stipe Miocic in Cleveland on October 26, 2016 (cropped).jpg
Miocic attending a baseball game in Cleveland, Ohio in October 2016
Born (1982-08-19) August 19, 1982 (age 37)
Euclid, Ohio, United States
NationalityAmerican
Height6 ft 4 in (193 cm)[1]
Weight230.5 lb (104.6 kg; 16.46 st)[2]
DivisionHeavyweight
Reach80 in (203 cm)[1]
StyleBoxing, Wrestling
StanceOrthodox
Fighting out ofIndependence, Ohio, United States
TeamStrong Style Fight Team[3]
TrainerHead coach: Marcus Marinelli
Boxing: Joe Delguyd, Alex Cooper
WrestlingNCAA Division I Wrestling[4]
Years active2010–present
Mixed martial arts record
Total22
Wins19
By knockout15
By decision4
Losses3
By knockout2
By decision1
UniversityCleveland State University
Trevecca Nazarene University
Websitestipemiocic.com
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Stipe Miocic (/ˈstp miˈɪ/;[5] Croatian: Miočić, pronounced [stǐːpe mîotʃitɕ];[6][7] born August 19, 1982 is an American professional mixed martial artist and firefighter-paramedic of Croatian descent.[8][9] He is currently signed to Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), where he competes in the heavyweight division and is the two-time and current UFC Heavyweight Champion. During his first title reign, he successfully defended his championship three times, holding the record for most consecutive successful title defenses in the history of the UFC heavyweight division. He has been called one of the greatest heavyweight fighters of all time.[10] Furthermore, Miocic holds the record for fight-night bonus awards, with nine, the most in the UFC heavyweight division's history.[11][12]

A former Golden Gloves boxing champion and NCAA Division I wrestler at Cleveland State University, Miocic's strengths are his combination of high level boxing ability and elite level wrestling.[13][14][15][16][17] As of May 24, 2020, he is #3 in the UFC men's pound-for-pound rankings.[18]

Early life[edit]

Miocic's given name Stipe equates Steve, as the diminutive of Croatian Stjepan respectively Stephen. He was born and raised in Euclid, Ohio, on August 19, 1982, the son of Croatian immigrants Kathy and Bojan Miocic.[19] His father originates from Rtina, while his mother is from Cetingrad, Croatia.[9][20][21][22] His parents separated when he was still a child and he continued to live with his mother, initially with grandparents, and later lived with his stepfather and younger half-brother Jonathan.[9][23]

Since childhood, his mother encouraged his involvement in sports.[9] Miocic played baseball and football and wrestled while at Eastlake North High School.[24] He received interest from Major League Baseball teams during his collegiate years at Cleveland State University and Trevecca Nazarene University.[25] He also played Division 2 baseball at Coker College his junior year of college.

At Trevecca, Miocic was a well-liked student majoring in communication studies. As a member of Jeff Forehand's baseball team, he hit .344 with seven home runs in his senior year and helped the Trojans win the 2005 TranSouth Athletic Conference regular season and tournament titles. None of his teammates at Trevecca are surprised by his success in MMA.[26] He graduated from Trevecca Nazarene University. He majored in marketing and communications at CSU.[9]

Mixed martial arts career[edit]

Early career[edit]

During his school days, in 2005, he was brought as a training partner to wrestle with Dan Bobish in Strong Style MMA Training Centre, in Independence, Ohio. Miocic at the time trained various sports (wrestling and baseball), to once again come train with them after finishing his paramedic education at Cuyahoga Community College.[9] He initially trained in mixed martial arts but soon changed to boxing. His coach Marcus Marinelli recalled that although he trained only for several months he was beating boxers with much longer experience.[9] After only eight months of training with a background of being a Cleveland Golden Gloves boxing champion (reaching quarter-final in the nationals), and NCAA Division I wrestler at Cleveland State, Miocic began his MMA career by winning his first six fights by knockout.[27] He initially fought for NAAFS (an Ohio-based MMA promotion), where he won the NAAFS Heavyweight Championship.[9]

Ultimate Fighting Championship[edit]

On June 14, 2011, it was announced that Miocic had signed a multi-fight deal with the UFC.[28]

Miocic made his UFC debut against Joey Beltran on October 8, 2011, at UFC 136 and won the fight via unanimous decision (29–28, 30–27, and 29–28).[29]

Miocic faced Phil De Fries on February 15, 2012, at UFC on Fuel TV: Sanchez vs. Ellenberger.[30] Miocic won the fight via first-round KO, and in the process won a "Knockout of the Night" award.

Miocic faced promotional newcomer Shane del Rosario on May 26, 2012, at UFC 146.[31] He won via TKO (elbows) in the second round.

Miocic faced Stefan Struve on September 29, 2012, at UFC on Fuel TV 5.[32] He lost the fight via TKO in the second round.[33] The performance earned both participants "Fight of the Night" honors.[34]

Miocic was scheduled to face returning veteran Soa Palelei on June 15, 2013, at UFC 161.[35] After an injury to UFC 161 headliner Renan Barao, the card was slightly reshuffled. Miocic was paired with Roy Nelson.[36] Miocic, as a significant betting underdog, defeated Nelson via unanimous decision (30–27, 30–27, and 30–27).

Miocic faced Gabriel Gonzaga on January 25, 2014, at UFC on Fox 10.[37] He won the fight via unanimous decision (30–27, 30–27, and 29–28).

Miocic was expected to face Junior dos Santos on May 24, 2014, at UFC 173.[38] However, the bout was shifted a bit and was expected take place a week later on May 31, 2014, at The Ultimate Fighter Brazil 3 Finale.[39] On May 5, 2014, dos Santos pulled out of the fight, citing a hand injury[40] and was replaced by Fábio Maldonado.[41] Miocic won the fight by TKO due to punches early in the first round and received a "Performance of the Night" bonus as well.[42][43]

A rescheduled bout with dos Santos eventually took place as the main event at UFC on Fox 13 on December 13, 2014.[44] Miocic lost the back-and-forth fight by unanimous decision.[45] The performance earned both participants "Fight of the Night" honors.[46]

Miocic faced Mark Hunt on May 10, 2015, at UFC Fight Night 65.[47] Miocic won the one-sided fight via TKO in the fifth round.[48][49] Miocic set a UFC record for the most strikes landed in a fight and largest strike margin, outlanding Hunt 361–48 over the duration of the bout.[50][51]

Miocic was expected to face Ben Rothwell on October 24, 2015, at UFC Fight Night 76.[52] However, Miocic pulled out of the fight on October 13 citing injury.[53] Subsequently, Rothwell was removed from the card the following day after the promotion deemed that a suitable opponent could not be arranged on short notice.[54] In turn, Miocic was quickly rebooked and faced Andrei Arlovski in a title eliminator on January 2, 2016, at UFC 195.[55] Miocic defeated Arlovski via TKO at 0:54 in the first round.[56] The win also earned him his second "Performance of the Night" bonus award.[57]

Miocic was briefly scheduled to replace the injured Cain Velasquez and fight Fabrício Werdum for the UFC Heavyweight Championship on February 6 at UFC Fight Night 82.[58] On January 25, the day after this announcement, Werdum pulled out of the fight with a back injury scrapping the fight.[59]

UFC Heavyweight Championship[edit]

Werdum vs. Miocic[edit]

Miocic eventually faced Werdum at UFC 198 on May 14, 2016.[60] He caught Werdum with a short right hook counter while backpedaling away from a flurry of punches in the first round, earning the championship and giving Werdum his first defeat since June 2011.[61] He was also awarded a Performance of the Night bonus.[62]

Miocic vs. Overeem[edit]

On September 10, 2016, Miocic made his first title defense at UFC 203 against Alistair Overeem.[63] Although he got knocked down early in the fight, he came back quickly and won via knockout in the first round.[64] Both participants were awarded Fight of the Night honors.[65]

Miocic vs. dos Santos II[edit]

Miocic made his second title defense against Junior dos Santos on May 13, 2017, at UFC 211 in a rematch.[66] Dos Santos previously beat Miocic by a close unanimous decision at UFC on Fox: dos Santos vs. Miocic in 2014. However, this time Miocic started strong and took control of the octagon early. Despite taking hard kicks to the shin, Miocic landed powerful punches with devastating accuracy to drop dos Santos, he then followed up with ground and pound to win the fight via TKO midway through the first round. The win also earned Miocic his fourth Performance of the Night bonus award.[67][68]

Miocic vs. Ngannou[edit]

Miocic faced Francis Ngannou on January 20, 2018, at UFC 220.[69] The fight was anticipated as one of the most exciting in UFC history, and Miocic openly felt disrespected because he never received the amount of promotion and support Ngannou did from UFC.[70][71] Miocic dominated Ngannou for five rounds using strikes with clinch or ground control following takedowns, winning by unanimous decision and breaking the record for most consecutive title defenses for the heavyweight championship with his third successful defense.[72][73] When he was announced as the winner, instead of the usual practice, he took the belt from Dana White and had his coach Marcus Marinelli put it around him.[17][74] Miocic received congratulations from both the President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović and Prime Minister of Croatia Andrej Plenković.[75][76]

Miocic vs. Cormier[edit]

For his fourth title defense, Miocic faced UFC Light heavyweight Champion Daniel Cormier on July 7, 2018, in the main event at UFC 226.[77] The champion vs. champion matchup was billed as "The Superfight". Miocic was the favorite heading into the bout, mainly due to his natural size and power advantage as well as his dangerous striking on the feet. He lost the fight in shocking fashion via knockout in the first round, ending the second longest heavyweight title reign in UFC history.[78] The fight was not without controversy however, as Cormier poked Stipe in both eyes, the last time of which occurring seconds before the knockout.[79]

Cormier vs. Miocic II[edit]

A rematch between Miocic and Daniel Cormier took place on August 17, 2019, at UFC 241 for the UFC Heavyweight Championship.[80] Miocic won the fight by TKO in the fourth round after landing several clean left hooks to the body and following it up with punches to the head, reclaiming the title.[81] This win earned him the Performance of the Night award.[82] Miocic is expected to be out of action until 2020 after suffering retinal damage due to multiple eye pokes received in the fight.[83]

Personal life[edit]

Miocic works as a part-time firefighter paramedic in Oakwood and Valley View, Ohio.[84] He considers it possible that he will become a full-time firefighter once he retires from MMA. When asked by Joe Rogan why he still works as a firefighter despite being a UFC champion, he stated that he needs something to fall back to after his fighting career is over.[70] He married Ryan Marie Carney on June 18, 2016, at the Divine Word Catholic Church in Kirtland, Ohio.[9] On January 20, 2018, Miocic announced that the couple are expecting a baby. He later added that it would be a girl.[85]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Mixed martial arts[edit]

Other[edit]

  • Greater Cleveland Sports Awards Professional Athlete of the Year (2019)[93]

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Professional record breakdown
22 matches 19 wins 3 losses
By knockout 15 2
By decision 4 1
Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 19–3 Daniel Cormier TKO (punches) UFC 241 August 17, 2019 4 4:09 Anaheim, California, United States Won the UFC Heavyweight Championship. Performance of the Night.
Loss 18–3 Daniel Cormier KO (punches) UFC 226 July 7, 2018 1 4:33 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Lost the UFC Heavyweight Championship.
Win 18–2 Francis Ngannou Decision (unanimous) UFC 220 January 20, 2018 5 5:00 Boston, Massachusetts, United States Defended the UFC Heavyweight Championship.
Win 17–2 Junior dos Santos TKO (punches) UFC 211 May 13, 2017 1 2:22 Dallas, Texas, United States Defended the UFC Heavyweight Championship. Performance of the Night.
Win 16–2 Alistair Overeem KO (punches) UFC 203 September 10, 2016 1 4:27 Cleveland, Ohio, United States Defended the UFC Heavyweight Championship. Fight of the Night.
Win 15–2 Fabrício Werdum KO (punch) UFC 198 May 14, 2016 1 2:47 Curitiba, Brazil Won the UFC Heavyweight Championship. Performance of the Night.
Win 14–2 Andrei Arlovski TKO (punches) UFC 195 January 2, 2016 1 0:54 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Performance of the Night.
Win 13–2 Mark Hunt TKO (punches) UFC Fight Night: Miocic vs. Hunt May 10, 2015 5 2:47 Adelaide, Australia
Loss 12–2 Junior dos Santos Decision (unanimous) UFC on Fox: dos Santos vs. Miocic December 13, 2014 5 5:00 Phoenix, Arizona, United States Fight of the Night.
Win 12–1 Fábio Maldonado TKO (punches) The Ultimate Fighter Brazil 3 Finale: Miocic vs. Maldonado May 31, 2014 1 0:35 São Paulo, Brazil Performance of the Night.
Win 11–1 Gabriel Gonzaga Decision (unanimous) UFC on Fox: Henderson vs. Thomson January 25, 2014 3 5:00 Chicago, Illinois, United States
Win 10–1 Roy Nelson Decision (unanimous) UFC 161 June 15, 2013 3 5:00 Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Loss 9–1 Stefan Struve TKO (punches) UFC on Fuel TV: Struve vs. Miocic September 29, 2012 2 3:50 Nottingham, England Fight of the Night.
Win 9–0 Shane del Rosario TKO (elbows) UFC 146 May 26, 2012 2 3:14 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 8–0 Philip De Fries KO (punches) UFC on Fuel TV: Sanchez vs. Ellenberger February 15, 2012 1 0:43 Omaha, Nebraska, United States Knockout of the Night.
Win 7–0 Joey Beltran Decision (unanimous) UFC 136 October 8, 2011 3 5:00 Houston, Texas, United States
Win 6–0 Bobby Brents TKO (submission to leg kicks) NAAFS: Fight Night in the Flats 7 June 4, 2011 2 4:27 Cleveland, Ohio, United States Won the NAAFS Heavyweight Championship.
Win 5–0 William Penn KO (punches) NAAFS: Caged Vengeance 9 April 16, 2011 1 2:23 Cleveland, Ohio, United States NAAFS Heavyweight Title Eliminator.
Win 4–0 Gregory Maynard TKO (punches) NAAFS: Night of Champions 2010 December 4, 2010 2 1:43 Cleveland, Ohio, United States
Win 3–0 Jeremy Holm KO (punches) NAAFS: Rock N Rumble 4 August 28, 2010 1 1:36 Cleveland, Ohio, United States
Win 2–0 Paul Barry TKO (punches) Moosin: God of Martial Arts May 21, 2010 2 1:32 Worcester, Massachusetts, United States
Win 1–0 Corey Mullis TKO (punches) NAAFS: Caged Fury 9 February 20, 2010 1 0:17 Cleveland, Ohio, United States

[94]

Pay-per-view bouts[edit]

No Event Fight Date Venue City PPV buys
1. UFC 198 Werdum vs. Miocic 14 May 2016 Arena da Baixada Curitiba, Brazil 217,000
2. UFC 203 Miocic vs. Overeem 10 September 2016 Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. 450,000
3. UFC 211 Miocic vs. dos Santos 2 13 May 2017 American Airlines Center Dallas, Texas, U.S. 300,000
4. UFC 220 Miocic vs. Ngannou 20 January 2018 TD Garden Boston, Massachusetts, U.S. 350,000
5. UFC 226 Miocic vs. Cormier 7 July 2018 T-Mobile Arena Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S. 380,000
6. UFC 241 Cormier vs. Miocic 2 17 August 2019 Honda Center Anaheim, California, U.S. 450,000
Total sales 2,147,000

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]

Achievements
Preceded by
Fabrício Werdum
19th UFC Heavyweight Champion
May 14, 2016 – July 7, 2018
Succeeded by
Daniel Cormier
Preceded by
Daniel Cormier
21st UFC Heavyweight Champion
August 17, 2019 – present
Incumbent