Will Brooks

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Will Brooks
BornWillie Love Brooks
October 8, 1986 (1986-10-08) (age 32)
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Other namesIll Will, Trill Will
Height5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Weight156 lb (71 kg; 11.1 st)
Reach72 in (183 cm)
Fighting out ofCoconut Creek, Florida, United States
TeamAmerican Top Team
Years active2011-present
Mixed martial arts record
By knockout5
By submission4
By decision11
By knockout2
By submission2
Other information
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Willie Love "Will" Brooks[1] (born October 8, 1986) is an American mixed martial artist who competed in the Lightweight division of the Professional Fighters League and Ultimate Fighting Championship. A professional competitor since 2011, he is the former Bellator Lightweight Champion and has also competed for DREAM.


Brooks took up wrestling at Warren Township High School, but his main focus was playing football. Excelling in football during high school, he ended up going to college to play at Harper College, in Palatine. At Harper, he met an old friend from high school in Nick Redding, who ended up changing the course of his life to MMA.[2]

MMA career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Brooks made his professional MMA debut in January 2011. He competed exclusively in his native Illinois and quickly amassed an undefeated record of 7-0 in the first two years of his career.


In late 2012, Brooks received the biggest opportunity of his career as he was invited to Japan by the DREAM organization. He faced experienced veteran Satoru Kitaoka at Dream 18 on December 31, 2012.[3] Despite being a heavy underdog, Brooks dominated the fight and won via TKO in the second round.

Bellator MMA[edit]

Following his impressive international debut, Brooks was quickly signed by Bellator Fighting Championships in January 2013.[4]

For his debut, Brooks was entered into the Bellator Lightweight Tournament. He faced Ricardo Tirloni in the opening round at Bellator 87 and won the fight via unanimous decision. He faced Saad Awad in the semi-finals and lost via KO in the first round.

Following the first loss of his career, Brooks rebounded with a win over Cris Leyva at Bellator 97 on July 31, 2013.

In the fall of 2013, Brooks entered into the Bellator Season 9 Lightweight tournament. He faced veteran John Alessio in the Quarterfinals on September 27, 2103 at Bellator 101. He won the fight in dominant fashion via unanimous decision.

Brooks had a rematch with Saad Awad in the semifinal round and dominated the fight for all three rounds, winning a unanimous decision victory.

Brooks faced Alexander Sarnavskiy in the finals. He won the fight via dominant unanimous decision to earn a future title shot at the Lightweight title.

On May 17, 2014, Brooks faced Michael Chandler filling in for the injured champ Eddie Alvarez at Bellator 120 for the Interim Bellator Lightweight Championship.[5] He won via split decision to become the Interim Bellator Lightweight Championship.[6]

With Bellator Lightweight Champion Eddie Alvarez leaving the promotion, Brooks faced Michael Chandler in a rematch at Bellator 131 on November 15, 2014 for the vacant Bellator Lightweight Championship.[7] He won the fight via TKO in the fourth round to become the undisputed Bellator Lightweight Champion.

Brooks made his first title defense against long-awaited challenger Dave Jansen at Bellator 136 on April 10, 2015.[8] He won the fight by unanimous decision.

Brooks made his second defense against Marcin Held on November 6, 2015 at Bellator 145.[9] Despite Held popping Brooks' knee in the opening round, Brooks continued on and won the fight via unanimous decision to retain the Bellator Lightweight Championship.

On May 14, 2016, Brooks was granted his release from Bellator MMA, vacating his lightweight championship.

Ultimate Fighting Championship[edit]

On June 15, 2016, it was announced that Brooks had signed a six-fight deal with the UFC. He made his promotional debut against Ross Pearson on July 8, 2016, at The Ultimate Fighter 23 Finale.[10] Brooks won the fight by unanimous decision.[11]

Brooks next faced Alex Oliveira on October 1, 2016 at UFC Fight Night 96.[12] The bout took place at a catchweight of 161.5 lbs, as Oliveira missed weight. Brooks lost the fight via KO in the third round.[13]

Brooks faced Charles Oliveira on April 8, 2017 at UFC 210.[14] He lost the fight by rear-naked choke submission in the first round.[15]

Brooks was scheduled to face Nik Lentz on October 7, 2017 at UFC 216.[16] However the pairing was scrapped during the weigh-ins for the event, as Lentz was stricken with "medical issues" and deemed unfit to compete.[17] The pairing with Lentz was rescheduled and eventually took take place on November 19, 2017 at UFC Fight Night 121.[18] Brooks lost the fight via submission in the second round.[19]

Professional Fighters League[edit]

On February 14, 2018, Brooks announced via social media that he had been released by the promotion and had signed with the Professional Fighters League. He also stated that he would be entering the promotion's one million dollar tournament.[20]

In his debut, Brooks faced Luiz Firmino at PFL 2 on June 21, 2018. He won the fight by unanimous decision.

In his second fight in the Lightweight tournament, Brooks faced Robert Watley on August 2, 2018 at PFL 5. He won the fight by unanimous decision.

In the end of January 2019, Brooks announced in social media that he became a free agent after the inaugural season of PFL.[21]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Draw 20–4–1 Rashid Magomedov Draw (unanimous) PFL 9 October 13, 2018 2 5:00 Long Beach, California, United States 2018 PFL Lightweight Quarterfinal bout. Eliminated via first round tiebreaker.
Win 20–4 Robert Watley Decision (unanimous) PFL 5 August 2, 2018 3 5:00 Uniondale, New York, United States
Win 19–4 Luiz Firmino Decision (unanimous) PFL 2 June 21, 2018 3 5:00 Chicago, Illinois, United States
Loss 18–4 Nik Lentz Submission (guillotine choke) UFC Fight Night: Werdum vs. Tybura November 19, 2017 2 2:05 Sydney, Australia
Loss 18–3 Charles Oliveira Submission (standing rear-naked choke) UFC 210 April 8, 2017 1 2:30 Buffalo, New York, United States
Loss 18–2 Alex Oliveira TKO (punches) UFC Fight Night: Lineker vs. Dodson October 1, 2016 3 3:30 Portland, Oregon, United States Catchweight (161.5 lbs) bout; Oliveira missed weight.
Win 18–1 Ross Pearson Decision (unanimous) The Ultimate Fighter: Team Joanna vs. Team Cláudia Finale July 8, 2016 3 5:00 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 17–1 Marcin Held Decision (unanimous) Bellator 145 November 6, 2015 5 5:00 St. Louis, Missouri, United States Defended the Bellator Lightweight Championship. Title vacated.
Win 16–1 Dave Jansen Decision (unanimous) Bellator 136 April 10, 2015 5 5:00 Irvine, California, United States Defended the Bellator Lightweight Championship.
Win 15–1 Michael Chandler TKO (punches) Bellator 131 November 15, 2014 4 3:48 San Diego, California, United States Won the vacant Bellator Lightweight Championship.
Win 14–1 Michael Chandler Decision (split) Bellator 120 May 17, 2014 5 5:00 Southaven, Mississippi, United States Won the interim Bellator Lightweight Championship.
Win 13–1 Alexander Sarnavskiy Decision (unanimous) Bellator 109 November 22, 2013 3 5:00 Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, United States Bellator Season Nine Lightweight Tournament Final.
Win 12–1 Saad Awad Decision (unanimous) Bellator 105 October 25, 2013 3 5:00 Rio Rancho, New Mexico, United States Bellator Season Nine Lightweight Tournament Semifinal.
Win 11–1 John Alessio Decision (unanimous) Bellator 101 September 27, 2013 3 5:00 Portland, Oregon, United States Bellator Season Nine Lightweight Tournament Quarterfinal.
Win 10–1 Cris Leyva TKO (punches) Bellator 97 July 31, 2013 3 2:20 Rio Rancho, New Mexico, United States
Loss 9–1 Saad Awad KO (punches) Bellator 91 February 28, 2013 1 0:43 Rio Rancho, New Mexico, United States Bellator Season Eight Lightweight Tournament Semifinal.
Win 9–0 Ricardo Tirloni Decision (unanimous) Bellator 87 January 31, 2013 3 5:00 Mount Pleasant, Michigan, United States Bellator Season Eight Lightweight Tournament Quarterfinal.
Win 8–0 Satoru Kitaoka TKO (punches) DREAM 18 December 31, 2012 2 3:46 Saitama, Japan
Win 7–0 Drew Dober Decision (unanimous) Disorderly Conduct: The Yin & The Yang August 10, 2012 3 5:00 Omaha, Nebraska, United States
Win 6–0 Tory Bogguess TKO (punches) XFO 44 June 16, 2012 1 4:20 Hoffman Estates, Illinois, United States
Win 5–0 Ryan Bixler Submission (rear-naked choke) Chicago Cagefighting Championship IV October 15, 2011 2 1:00 Villa Park, Illinois, United States
Win 4–0 Joseph Richardson Submission (armbar) XFO 41 September 3, 2011 1 3:49 Island Lake, Illinois, United States
Win 3–0 Bobby Reardanz Submission (armbar) XFO 39 May 13, 2011 3 3:22 Hoffman Estates, Illinois, United States
Win 2–0 Guillermo Serment Submission (rear-naked choke) Chicago Cagefighting Championship III March 5, 2011 2 0:45 Villa Park, Illinois, United States
Win 1–0 J.R. Hines TKO (punches) XFO 38 January 22, 2011 1 2:09 Woodstock, Illinois, United States

See also[edit]


  1. ^ http://boxing.nv.gov/uploadedFiles/boxingnvgov/content/results/2016_Results/07-08-16MMA.pdf
  2. ^ "Will Brooks Bio". Bleacher Report. Retrieved July 17, 2014.
  3. ^ "Karakhanyan-Takaya, Baroni-Sakurai, Brooks-Kitaoka booked for DREAM 18 card". mmajunkie.com. December 11, 2012.
  4. ^ "Will Brooks signs with Bellator, first fight vs. Ricardo Tirloni". global-mma.com. January 10, 2013.
  5. ^ "Will Brooks replaces Eddie Alvarez, faces Michael Chandler as Bellator 120 stays on PPV". mmafighting.com. May 10, 2014.
  6. ^ "Bellator 120 Results: Will Brooks Spoils the Alvarez vs. Chandler Trilogy, Captures Interim Belt". mmaweekly.com. May 18, 2014.
  7. ^ "Tito Ortiz-Stephan Bonnar, Will Brooks-Michael Chandler set for Nov. 15 Bellator". sherdog.com. September 5, 2014.
  8. ^ "Will Brooks to defend Bellator's 155-pound title against Dave Jansen in April". mmafighting.com. February 4, 2015.
  9. ^ "Bellator 145 Fight Card". bellator.com. 2015-11-06.
  10. ^ John Morgan (2016-06-15). "Will Brooks signs with UFC, meets Ross Pearson at The Ultimate Fighter 23 Finale". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2016-06-15.
  11. ^ Ben Fowlkes (2015-07-08). "TUF 23 Finale results: Ex-Bellator champ Will Brooks tops gritty Ross Pearson for win in UFC debut". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2016-07-08.
  12. ^ Staff (2016-08-01). "Will Brooks vs. Alex Oliveira added to UFC Fight Night 96 in Portland". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2016-08-01.
  13. ^ Ben Fowlkes (2016-10-01). "UFC Fight Night 96 results: Alex Oliveira takes out, then taunts hobbled Will Brooks in third". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2016-10-01.
  14. ^ Tristen Critchfield (2017-02-11). "Will Brooks vs. Charles Oliveira added to UFC 210 lineup in Buffalo". sherdog.com. Retrieved 2017-02-11.
  15. ^ Steven Marrocco (2017-04-08). "UFC 210 results: Charles Oliveira finishes Will Brooks with standing rear-naked choke". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2017-04-08.
  16. ^ Steven Marrocco (2017-07-23). "Nik Lentz, Will Brooks agree to fight each other at UFC 216 in Las Vegas". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2017-07-23.
  17. ^ Staff (2017-10-06). "UFC 216 loses a featured prelim on eve of event". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2017-10-06.
  18. ^ Steven Marrocco (2017-10-16). "Will Brooks vs. Nik Lentz targeted for UFC Fight Night 121". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2017-10-16.
  19. ^ "UFC Fight Night 121 results: Nik Lentz chokes out 5-1 favorite, ex-teammate Will Brooks". MMAjunkie. 2017-11-19. Retrieved 2017-11-19.
  20. ^ "Will Brooks announces he was cut by the UFC, is entering PFL's $1 million tournament". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 2018-02-15.
  21. ^ Jed Meshew (January 31, 2019). "Morning Report: Daniel Cormier discusses being ranked ahead of Jon Jones, possibly putting off retirement". mmafighting.com.

External links[edit]