David Branch (fighter)
David Branch (born September 26, 1981) is an American mixed martial artist currently competing in the Middleweight division. A professional competitor since 2007, he has fought for the UFC, World Series of Fighting, Bellator, Shark Fights, and Titan FC. Branch is the former WSOF Light Heavyweight Champion and WSOF Middleweight Champion.
|Born||September 26, 1981|
Charlotte, North Carolina, United States
|Other names||The Executive|
|Height||6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)|
|Weight||186 lb (84 kg; 13.3 st)|
|Division||Light Heavyweight |
|Reach||78 in (198 cm)|
|Fighting out of||Brooklyn, New York, United States|
|Team||Renzo Gracie Jiu-Jitsu |
Church Street Boxing
|Rank||Black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Renzo Gracie|
|Mixed martial arts record|
|Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog|
- 1 Background
- 2 Mixed martial arts career
- 3 Personal life
- 4 Championships and accomplishments
- 5 Mixed martial arts record
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Raised in the Bronx, New York, Branch trained in Karate for two and a half years before transitioning into Brazilian jiu-jitsu. He graduated from A. Philip Randolph Campus High School in New York, New York. Branch trained for three years with Michael Casey (black belt under Relson Gracie) in the Bronx, NY before he began training under the tutelage of MMA veteran, Renzo Gracie at his personal training center, and further developing his striking with Jason Strout (his first Head Coach) at Church Street Boxing Gym. Branch gained his black belt after learning from Gracie for about ten years. In addition to mixed martial arts, Branch has also competed in (and won) Brazilian jiu-jitsu titles in nationwide competitions.
Mixed martial arts careerEdit
Branch turned professional in MMA in 2007 and compiled an overall professional record of 3-0 before being signed by Bellator.
Branch then competed in the UCC organization and defeated John Troyer via TKO (punches) at 4:26 of the second round.
Ultimate Fighting ChampionshipEdit
In May 2010, Branch's coach Renzo Gracie announced that Branch had signed a four-fight contract with the UFC. Branch made his debut on the undercard of UFC 116 against Gerald Harris. Branch was knocked out cold with a slam in the third round, losing for the first time in his professional career.
Branch was expected to face Aaron Simpson on September 15, 2010 at UFC Fight Night 22, but Simpson was forced to pull out of the bout with a staph infection. Branch instead fought Tomasz Drwal. Branch won the fight via unanimous decision, earning his first UFC victory.
Branch next defeated Rich Attonito at The Ultimate Fighter: Team GSP vs. Team Koscheck Finale via unanimous decision (30–27, 30–27, and 30–27).
Branch next faced Rousimar Palhares on March 3, 2011 at UFC Live: Sanchez vs. Kampmann, replacing Alexandre Ferreira. Branch was defeated by Palhares when he tapped out to a kneebar early in the second round and was subsequently released from the promotion.
Following his release from the UFC Branch signed to fight Jeremy May at Shark Fights 15: Villaseñor vs Camozzi. He won via TKO in the third round.
In his next fight Branch took on former UFC vet Anthony Johnson at Titan Fighting Championships 22. The bout was originally supposed to be fought at 185lbs, but both fighters came in overweight and the bout was changed to 195 lb catchweight fight. He lost via unanimous decision.
World Series of FightingEdit
On May 16, 2013, WSOF announced a four-man tournament to crown an Inaugural Middleweight Champion. Branch will be one of the four men entering this tournament. Joining Branch will be former UFC vet Jesse Taylor, current MFC Middleweight Champion Elvis Mutapcic, and former UFC vet Danillo Villefort. Branch took on Danillo Villefort in the open round of the tournament at WSOF 5. He won the fight via unanimous decision.
In the Middleweight Tournament Final, Branch faced Jesse Taylor at World Series of Fighting 10 on June 21, 2014. He won the fight via D'arce choke submission in the first round to become the inaugural World Series of Fighting Middleweight champion.
On March 5, 2015, it was announced that a semifinal fight of the WSOF Light Heavyweight Championship Tournament between Matt Hamill and Vinny Magalhães was canceled and then changed to a fight between WSOF Middleweight Championship David Branch and Ronny Markes for the second semifinal fight of the WSOF Light Heavyweight Championship tournament at the WSOF 20 on April 10, 2015. However, on the day of the weigh-in, Markes was forced out of the bout due to dehydration and was replaced by promotional newcomer Jesse McElligott. He won the fight via technical submission in the second round.
Return to Ultimate Fighting ChampionshipEdit
On February 15, 2017, Branch announced that he had re-signed with the UFC and expects to be scheduled to compete in the middleweight division for the promotion by May.
Branch faced former UFC middleweight champion Luke Rockhold at UFC Fight Night 116 on September 16, 2017. Despite winning the first round, he lost the fight by a tap out due to strikes with 55 seconds remaining in the second round.
Branch was scheduled to face Yoel Romero on February 24, 2018 at UFC on Fox 28. However, on January 12, 2018, it was announced that Robert Whittaker was pulled from the middleweight title championship at UFC 221 and replaced by Romero.
Branch was expected to face Ronaldo Souza on November 3, 2018 at UFC 230. However on October 19, 2018 It was reported that Souza replaced injured Luke Rockhold who was scheduled to fight Chris Weidman in the event.  It was reported on October 19, 2018 that Jared Cannonier faced Branch instead. He lost the fight via technical knockout in round two, marking the first time he's been stopped due to strikes.
Branch was scheduled to face Andrew Sanchez on September 14, 2019 at UFC on ESPN+ 16. However, it was reported that Branch was forced to pull from the event due to injury and he was replaced by Marvin Vettori.
USADA violation and release from the UFCEdit
In September 2019, it was revealed that Branch received a 2 year USADA suspension. He tested positive for Ipamorelin, a class of Peptide hormones and Growth Factors, detected in a urine sample he provided out-of-competition on May 24, 2019. Sanction was made retroactive to July 26, 2019 and he is eligible to fight again in North America on July 26, 2021. Subsequently, Branch was officially released from the UFC on September 18, 2019.
After the release from the UFC, Branch faced Alexander Shlemenko at Russian Cagefighting Championship 7 on December 14, 2019. He lost the fight via a guillotine choke submission in the first round.
Championships and accomplishmentsEdit
- Ultimate Fighting Championship
- World Series of Fighting
- WSOF Light Heavyweight Championship (One time)
- One successful title defense
- WSOF Middleweight Championship (One time)
- Three successful title defenses
- WSOF Middleweight Championship Tournament Winner
- WSOF Light Heavyweight Championship Tournament Winner
- First fighter to hold Championships in multiple weight classes
- Tied 2nd most wins in World Series of Fighting history (10) with Justin Gaethje
- Most Submission wins in World Series of Fighting history (4)
- Undefeated in World Series of Fighting (10-0)
Mixed martial arts recordEdit
|Professional record breakdown|
|29 matches||22 wins||7 losses|
|Loss||22–7||Alexander Shlemenko||Submission (guillotine choke)||Russian Cagefighting Championship 7||December 14, 2019||1||4:58||Yekaterinburg, Russia|
|Loss||22–6||Jack Hermansson||Submission (guillotine choke)||UFC on ESPN: Barboza vs. Gaethje||March 30, 2019||1||0:49||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States|
|Loss||22–5||Jared Cannonier||TKO (punches)||UFC 230||November 3, 2018||2||0:39||New York City, New York, United States|
|Win||22–4||Thiago Santos||KO (punches)||UFC Fight Night: Barboza vs. Lee||April 21, 2018||1||2:30||Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States||Performance of the Night.|
|Loss||21–4||Luke Rockhold||TKO (submission to punches)||UFC Fight Night: Rockhold vs. Branch||September 16, 2017||2||4:05||Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States|
|Win||21–3||Krzysztof Jotko||Decision (split)||UFC 211||May 13, 2017||3||5:00||Dallas, Texas, United States|
|Win||20–3||Louis Taylor||Submission (rear-naked choke)||WSOF 34||December 31, 2016||5||2:00||New York City, New York, United States||Return to Middleweight; defended the WSOF Middleweight Championship.|
|Win||19–3||Vinny Magalhães||Decision (unanimous)||WSOF 33||October 7, 2016||5||5:00||Kansas City, Missouri, United States||Defended the WSOF Light Heavyweight Championship.|
|Win||18–3||Clifford Starks||Decision (unanimous)||WSOF 30||April 2, 2016||5||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Defended the WSOF Middleweight Championship.|
|Win||17–3||Teddy Holder||Submission (rear-naked choke)||WSOF 23||September 18, 2015||1||2:21||Phoenix, Arizona, United States||Won the inaugural WSOF Light Heavyweight Championship. WSOF Light Heavyweight Championship Tournament Final.|
|Win||16–3||Jesse McElligott||Technical Submission (Von Flue choke)||WSOF 20||April 10, 2015||2||1:28||Mashantucket, Connecticut, United States||Light Heavyweight debut; WSOF Light Heavyweight Championship Tournament Semifinal.|
|Win||15–3||Yushin Okami||TKO (punches)||WSOF 15||November 15, 2014||4||3:39||Tampa, Florida, United States||Defended the WSOF Middleweight Championship.|
|Win||14–3||Jesse Taylor||Submission (D'Arce choke)||WSOF 10||June 21, 2014||1||1:41||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Won the inaugural WSOF Middleweight Championship. WSOF Middleweight Championship Tournament Final.|
|Win||13–3||Danillo Villefort||Decision (unanimous)||WSOF 5||September 14, 2013||3||5:00||Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States||WSOF Middleweight Championship Tournament Semifinal.|
|Win||12–3||Paulo Filho||Decision (unanimous)||WSOF 2||March 23, 2013||3||5:00||Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States|
|Win||11–3||Dustin Jacoby||Decision (unanimous)||WSOF 1||November 3, 2012||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Loss||10–3||Anthony Johnson||Decision (unanimous)||Titan FC 22||May 25, 2012||3||5:00||Kansas City, Kansas, United States||Catchweight (195 lbs) bout; both fighters missed weight.|
|Win||10–2||Dominique Steele||Decision (unanimous)||Pure MMA: The Beginning||January 22, 2012||3||5:00||Plains, Pennsylvania, United States|
|Win||9–2||Jeremy May||TKO (punches)||Shark Fights 15: Villaseñor vs Camozzi||May 27, 2011||3||3:19||Rio Rancho, New Mexico, United States|
|Loss||8–2||Rousimar Palhares||Submission (kneebar)||UFC Live: Sanchez vs. Kampmann||March 3, 2011||2||1:44||Louisville, Kentucky, United States|
|Win||8–1||Rich Attonito||Decision (unanimous)||The Ultimate Fighter: Team GSP vs. Team Koscheck Finale||December 4, 2010||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||7–1||Tomasz Drwal||Decision (unanimous)||UFC Fight Night: Marquardt vs. Palhares||September 15, 2010||3||5:00||Austin, Texas, United States|
|Loss||6–1||Gerald Harris||KO (slam)||UFC 116||July 3, 2010||3||2:35||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||6–0||Derrick Mehmen||Submission (rear-naked choke)||Bellator 15||April 22, 2010||2||0:26||Uncasville, Connecticut, United States||Catchweight (190 lbs) bout.|
|Win||5–0||John Troyer||TKO (punches)||UCC 1: Merciless||March 19, 2010||2||4:26||Jersey City, New Jersey, United States|
|Win||4–0||Dennis Olson||Submission (rear-naked choke)||Bellator 11||June 12, 2009||1||2:27||Uncasville, Connecticut, United States|
|Win||3–0||Robby Huston||Submission (rear-naked choke)||DCF: Battle at the Nation's Capital||December 13, 2008||2||2:41||Washington D.C., United States|
|Win||2–0||Alex Aquino||TKO (doctor stoppage)||Ring of Combat 19||May 9, 2008||1||3:29||Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States|
|Win||1–0||Craig Simone||TKO (punches)||Cage Fights 6||September 29, 2007||1||1:44||Fort Myers, Florida, United States|
- "David Branch | UFC". www.ufc.com. Retrieved 2019-04-21.
- "David Branch - Official UFC Fighter Profile". UFC.com. Retrieved May 17, 2017.
- "Renzo Gracie: UFC signs Bellator middleweight David Branch to four-fight deal". MMAjunkie.com. 2010-05-22. Retrieved 2010-06-20.
- "UFC 116 preliminary card recap: Brendan Schaub, Gerald Harris dazzle in KO wins". mmajunkie.com. July 4, 2010.
- "Aaron Simpson hospitalized after surgery". mmaweekly.com. August 6, 2010.
- "Tomasz Drwal vs. David Branch expected at UFC Fight Night 22". mmajunkie.com. August 9, 2010.
- "David Branch vs. Rich Attonito set for The Ultimate Fighter 12 Finale". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2010-10-30.
- "Dan Miller vs. David Branch in the works for UFC 128". TrueFighting.com.com. 2010-12-30. Archived from the original on 2011-08-31. Retrieved 2010-12-30.
- "David Branch Replaces Ferreira, Faces Palhares At UFC on Versus 3". heavy.com. January 19, 2011.
- "Middleweight David Branch Latest Fighter Released by the UFC". mmaweekly.com. March 23, 2011.
- Damon Martin (March 23, 2012). "Anthony Johnson vs. David Branch Set as Main Event for Titan Fighting 22". MMAWeekly.com.
- Dann Stupp (May 26, 2012). "Anthony Johnson tops David Branch in Titan Fighting 22 headliner". MMAJunkie.com.
- "WSOF 1 - Arlovski vs. Cole Results". Sherdog.com. November 3, 2012.
- "WSOF 2 - Arlovski vs. Johnson Results". Sherdog.com. March 23, 2013.
- MMAjunkie.com Staff (May 16, 2013). "WSOF sets four-man middleweight tourney with Taylor, Mutapcic, Branch, Villefort". MMAJunkie.com.
- "World Series of Fighting 5 to host opening round of middleweight tournament".
- "David Branch defends middleweight belt vs. Yushin Okami at WSOF 15". mmajunkie.com. July 29, 2014. Retrieved August 6, 2014.
- "David Branch and Ronny Markes Light Heavyweight Tilt to Headline WSOF 20".
- MMAjunkie Staff (2015-04-09). "Ronny Markes out of WSOF 20 headliner; Dave Branch now meets Jesse McElligott". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2015-04-10.
- "Shawn Jordan's WSOF debut plus two other bouts round out WSOF 33".
- Ariel Helwani (2017-02-15). "David Branch signs with UFC". mmafighting.com. Retrieved 2017-02-15.
- Ariel Helwani (2017-03-07). "David Branch vs. Krzysztof Jotko targeted for UFC 211". mmafighting.com. Retrieved 2017-03-07.
- Steven Marrocco (2017-05-13). "UFC 211 results: Ex-WSOF double champ David Branch takes split from Krzysztof Jotko in return". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2017-05-13.
- Mike Bohn (2017-07-22). "Ex-champ Luke Rockhold returns vs. David Branch in September's UFC Fight Night 116 headliner". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2017-07-23.
- "UFC Fight Night 116 Results: Luke Rockhold forces David Branch to tapout | BJPenn.com". | BJPenn.com. 2017-09-16. Retrieved 2017-09-17.
- "Yoel Romero vs. David Branch on tap for UFC on FOX 28". Bloody Elbow. Retrieved 2017-12-30.
- "Thiago Santos to fight David Branch at UFC Atlantic City". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 2018-02-07.
- "UFC Fight Night 128 results: David Branch gets big KO win over Thiago 'Marreta' Santos". MMAjunkie. 2018-04-22. Retrieved 2018-04-22.
- "UFC Fight Night 128 bonuses: That wacky Simon-Dvalishvili bout was 'Fight of Night'". MMAjunkie. 2018-04-22. Retrieved 2018-04-22.
- Ariel Helwani (2018-07-19). "Ronaldo 'Jacare' Souza to fight David Branch at UFC 230". espn.com. Retrieved 2018-07-20.
- "Jacare Souza to fill in for Luke Rockhold vs Chris Weidman at UFC 230 | BJPenn.com". | BJPenn.com. 2018-10-20. Retrieved 2018-10-20.
- "With 'Jacare' shifted to co-main event, David Branch gets Jared Cannonier at UFC 230". MMAjunkie. 2018-10-20. Retrieved 2018-10-20.
- "UFC 230 results: New-look Jared Cannonier upsets David Branch with ferocious finish". MMAmania.com. Retrieved 2018-11-04.
- "David Branch vs. Jack Hermansson booked for UFC on ESPN 2 in Philadelphia". MMAjunkie. 2019-02-10. Retrieved 2019-02-10.
- "UFC Philadelphia: Jack Hermansson taps David Branch with ease in first". MMA Junkie. 2019-03-31. Retrieved 2019-03-31.
- "David Branch vs. Andrew Sanchez set for ESPN+ 16". MMA Junkie. 2019-06-13. Retrieved 2019-06-14.
- DNA, MMA. "David Branch haakt geblesseerd af voor gevecht tegen Andrew Sanchez tijdens UFC Vancouver". Retrieved 2019-08-02.
- "In wake of USADA suspension, UFC releases David Branch from contract". mmafighting.com. 2019-09-18. Retrieved 2019-09-18.
- Marrocco, Steven (2019-09-19). "In wake of USADA suspension, UFC releases David Branch from contract". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 2019-09-20.
- Farah Hannoun (December 4, 2019). "David Branch to face Alexander Shlemenko at RCC 7 on Dec. 14". mmajunkie.com.
- "Straight Outta Brownsville - Introducing David Branch". UFC.com. June 29, 2010.[permanent dead link]
- Sherdog.com. "David Branch MMA Stats, Pictures, News, Videos, Biography - Sherdog.com". Sherdog. Retrieved 2019-09-18.