Alex Krupnyakov – 5-0-0 - Kyrgyzstani – 33 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 5-8, Last Fought: Oct ‘12
A freestyle wrestler from Kyrgyzstan, Krupnyakov has worldwide experience – competing at both the 2004 and 2008 Olympics in freestyle wrestling. His best accomplishments include a gold medal in the 2007 Asian Championships, and a bronze medal in the 2005 World Championships – during which he beat Strikeforce Champion Daniel Cormier. He’s a smaller heavyweight, having wrestled at 212 pounds at the Olympics, though he did used to cut weight for it. He has impressively won each of his first 5 MMA fights by 1st round Submission in under 2 minutes.
Orlando Sanchez – 3-0-0 – American – 30 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 8-5, Last Fought: Sep ‘12
Orlando Sanchez is a jiu-jitsu master, and one of America’s fastest ever black belts – getting it after just 4 years of training. A short Heavyweight at 5’9”, his nickname ‘The Cuban tree stump’ says it all. During his 4 years in jiu-jitsu, he has won over 10 tournaments, including the Gracie Nationals, Grapplers Quest, the Pan-American Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Championship and the Abu Dhabi World PRO North American trials. Surprisingly he has finished each of his first 3 wins due to punches, and has needed less than 2 and a half minutes to finish his 3 fights combined. In his MMA debut he knocked out Juan Miranda (7-3) in just 13 seconds.
Ruan Potts – 5-0-0 – South African – 34 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 10-2, Last Fought: Oct ‘12
Potts is one of the most well-rounded heavyweights on the list, being skilled in Judo, Muay Thai & Jui Jitsu. He is a Judo black belt, Jui-Jitsu purple belt, and the South African Muay Thai Champion. Unofficially he is 15-0, though his official record lists him as 5-0 with 5 finishes – 4 by TKO and the other by Submission. The South African is the EFCA Heavyweight Champion, and his best win comes over the previously unbeaten Andrew Van Zyl (4-0).
Deniss Smoldarev – 4-0-0 – Estonian – 22 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 9-3, Last Fought: Nov ‘12
One of the youngest fighters on the Heavyweight list at 22 years old, Smoldarev comes from a Judo and Sambo background. The Estonian is a big heavyweight at 6’5” and 260 pounds, and has drawn comparisons to Brock Lesnar due to his sheer size. He has fought 3 of his 4 career fights for the M1 organisation, where he has beaten fighters such as Akhmed Sultanov (12-4) and Denis Komkin (13-7). With his size, talent and young age, Smoldarev is a Heavyweight to watch!
Ion Cutelaba – 3-0-0 – Moldovan – 19 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 4-5, Last Fought: Dec ‘12
The youngest fighter on the heavyweight list, Cutelaba is one of just 2 fighters from Moldova on the entire 205 man list. He has a good martial arts background, and is a Moldovan judo champion and a European combat sambo champion. Cutelaba has blasted through all his opposition so far, with his 3 fights lasting a combined 94 seconds. His wins have come after 27, 25 and 42 seconds, with him winning 2 via TKO and the other by an impressive omoplata submission. Among his wins include Igor Kukurudziak (5-7) and Julian Chilikov (4-2), and Cutelaba has even drawn comparisons to Fedor Emelianenko.
Nikita Krylov – 9-0-0 – Ukrainian – 20 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 0-7, Last Fought: Oct ‘12
Like many Eastern European fighters, Krylov is a Sambo specialist. After making his debut in June 2012, Krylov has fought 9 times already averaging a fight every 3 weeks, which is extremely impressive for a 20 year old! Impressively he has finished all 9 fights in the very first round with 7 of them Submission wins, although the quality of his opposition has been extremely poor – 5 of his wins have been over debutants, and none of his opponents have had positive records. The only opponent with any experience was his most recent fight, a 1st round Submission of Igor Kukurudziak (4-6).
Gheorghe Ignat – 5-0-0 – Romanian – 28 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 5-2, Last Fought: Jun ‘12
As with number 1 ranked Krupnyakov, Ignat is another wrestler with worldwide experience - this time a Greco-roman wrestler out of Romania. He is an 8x national champion, as well as the current Balkan champion. He trains at The Arena, alongside fighters such as KJ Noons, Chris Cope & Jon Tuck. Ignat has started his career well, winning all 5 fights and finishing the last 4 of them. In March he got an excellent TKO win over Attila Ucar (8-3).
Smealinho Rama – 5-0-0 – Canadian – 20 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 10-8, Last Fought: Oct ‘12
The second youngest Heavyweight on the list at just 20 years old, Rama has had a busy start to his MMA career, with all 5 fights coming in 2012. He has finished each fight in the very first round, with 3 Submissions and 2 TKO’s. Rama fights for top Canadian promotion MFC, and in November he won the battle of Canada’s top Heavyweight prospects by submitting Ryan Fortin (6-3) in just 2 minutes.
Jan Jorgensen – 5-0-0 – American – 28 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 9-3, Last Fought: Aug ‘12
A former University football player for Brigham Young University, Jorgensen has transitioned to MMA well, finishing all 5 of his fights, with the most recent 4 coming by TKO. The heavy handed high-school wrestler trains at John Hackleman’s The Pit, which is home to a number of UFC fighters such as Costa Philippou & Court McGhee. His best win came in May when he needed less than 2 minutes to stop the previously unbeaten Tyson Collett (3-0).
Raphael Butler – 5-0-0 – American – 28 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 11-7, Last Fought: Sep ‘12
28 year old Raphael Butler may be a familiar name to boxing fans, as he is a former professional boxer. As well as being a Golden Gloves Champion as an amateur, he has racked up a 35-12 (28 KO’s) pro boxing record, fighting boxers such as Eddie Chambers and David Price. He turned his attention to MMA in 2010, and has amassed a perfect 5-0 record, with 5 stoppages (4 of which due to punches). In his most recent fight he needed just 13 seconds to win the Minnesota Heavyweight Title and hand Brett Murphy (4-0) his first loss.
Ante Delija – 6-0-0 – Croatian – 22 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 9-11, Last Fought: Dec ‘12
Croatian fighter Delija has fought 3 times in each of 2011 & 2012, finishing 5 of his 6 opponents, with 3 wins coming due to punches and 2 wins by Submission. At 22 years old he is one of the youngest fighters on the Heavyweight list, and he trains out of Gladiator Team - Croatia’s top gym which also houses Maro Perak & Ajlin Ahmic. In December the Croatian fighter beat former UFC champion Ricco Rodriguez (49-18). He also holds a knockout victory over Drazen Forgac (7-7).
Marcin Tybura – 6-0-0 – Polish – 27 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 11-4, Last Fought: Dec ‘12
Polish fighter Tybura trains out of the well respect Polish gym ‘United Gym’. He is a stocky heavyweight and has finished 3 of his 5 fights by submission. After fighting 4 inexperienced opponents in his first 4 fights, in June he stepped up in competition and faced Poland’s top ranked heavyweight Szymon Bajor (9-1), where he grinded out a hard fought Split Decision victory. Tybura is a Jui-Jitsu specialist, regularly competing in Jui-Jitsu tournaments, and in March 2012 he won the purple belt open at the World Pro Trials.
Dan Charles – 5-0-0 – American – 27 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 5-2, Last Fought: Sep ‘12
Charles trains at top camp Arizona Combat Sports – famous for being the former camp of Ryan Bader, CB Dollaway & Aaron Simpson. He has a Collegiate wrestling background, though recently has taken to Muay Thai. His average fight time so far is just 46 seconds, which includes a 13 second knockout, and he has got 2 TKO and 2 Submission wins. In his most recent fight in September, he stopped the previously unbeaten Alex Moore (4-0).
Viktor Pesta – 6-0-0 – Czech – 22 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 6-5, Last Fought: Sep ‘12
Young Czech fighter Pesta has made a great start to his young career, winning all 6 fights. Since making his debut 2 years ago as a 20 year old he has demolished his opposition, though it has been extremely weak and he could do with facing some sterner tests – his best win is only over Lukas Olejnik (2-4). Pesta is a decent sized agile heavyweight at 230 pounds, with a similar frame to Stipe Miocic.
Jesse Hernandez – 5-0-0 – American – 25 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 1-6, Last Fought: Oct ‘12
A former college football player, Hernandez is a huge heavyweight and has been weighing in as heavy as 275 pounds in recent fights. The 25 year old has finished all 5 fights in less than 3 minutes, with 3 TKO’s and 2 Submission’s. In September he won the SCC Heavyweight title by submitting veteran Tracy Willis (7-6), and he most recently fought under the KOTC batter.
Levan Razmadze – 5-0-0 – Georgian – 27 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 11-5, Last Fought: Feb ‘12
Deep Megatron Champion Razmadze is a Judo practitioner, and is a former member of the Georgian Olympic Judo team. The 26 year old is a huge heavyweight – weighing in at 273 pounds for his last fight. The judoka has finished every fight in the first round with 3 wins by submission and 2 via TKO. His most impressive victory was in his most recent fight in February, when he halted the 8-1 streak of Ryuta Noji (15-6), submitting him in just 3 minutes.
Chris Birchler – 3-0-0 – American – 25 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 4-3, Last Fought: Aug ‘12
Birchler was a 2-time NCAA Division 1 qualifier during his wrestling career, and has made a great start to his MMA career. The 25 year old wrestler is 3-0 as a pro, as well as being 3-0 as an amateur, and has finished 2 of his 3 fights. He trains out of AMA Fight Club, which houses fighters such as Jim & Dan Miller, Jamie Varner, and Charlie Brenneman; and was ranked as the #5 heavyweight on the 2012 bloodyelbow.com Heavyweight scout report.
Duke Didier – 3-0-0 – Australian – 23 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 1-1, Last Fought: Aug ‘12
Australian fighter Didier is a Judo specialist and was close to making it to the Olympics with Team Australia in 2012. He has used this talent to help him submit all 3 opponents so far, finishing 2 by guillotine and most recently winning by armbar. He is the son of a top Wallabies rugby forward, and at just 23 years old and with his martial arts background, ‘The Duke of Canberra’ is one to keep an eye on.
Fernando Camolesi – 4-0-0 – Brazilian – 26 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 2-0, Last Fought: Nov ‘12
The lone Brazilian on the Heavyweight list, Camolesi has made his first 4 fights look easy. He has finished all 4 fights (2 Submissions, 2 TKOs), with 3 coming in the very first round. The 26 year old is an extremely large Heavyweight at 260 pounds, though his record has been dampened by the poor level of opposition he has face – his 4 opponents have had just 2 fights between them.
Ken Hasegawa – 5-0-0 – Japanese – 25 Years Old - Opponent W/L: 3-7, Last Fought: Dec ‘12
The only Asian Heavyweight on the list, Hasegawa is one of the smaller Heavyweights and would probably be better losing some weight and dropping to Light Heavyweight. He has been successful in this division so far however, winning all 4 fights and finishing 3 of them in the first round. His best win came in 2011 over the experienced Seigo Mizuguchi (7-8), and most recently in December he ended the unbeaten run of Peter Tornow (3-0).