Fabrício Werdum (Portuguese pronunciation: [faˈbɾisju veʁˈdũ]; born July 30, 1977) is a Brazilian mixed martial artist and former UFC Heavyweight Champion. He is also a two-time Brazilian jiu-jitsu world champion, a two-time Abu Dhabi Combat Club World Heavyweight Champion and European jiu-jitsu champion. He holds black belts in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, Judo, and Muay Thai. Werdum has competed in PRIDE, the UFC, Strikeforce, and Jungle Fight.
Werdum in 2009
|Born||July 30, 1977|
Porto Alegre, Brazil
|Other names||Vai Cavalo (Go Horse)|
|Residence||Los Angeles, California, U.S.|
|Height||6 ft 4 in (193 cm)|
|Weight||249 lb (113 kg; 17 st 11 lb)|
|Reach||77 in (196 cm)|
|Style||Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Judo, Muay Thai|
|Fighting out of||Los Angeles, California, U.S.|
Werdum Combat Team
Akhmat Fight Club
|Rank||2nd degree black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Octávio "Ratinho" Couto|
Black belt in Judo
Black belt in Muay Thai under Rafael Cordeiro
|Years active||2002–present (MMA)|
|Mixed martial arts record|
|Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog|
Often regarded as one of the best heavyweight fighters of all time, he was the first fighter to decisively defeat Fedor Emelianenko in mixed martial arts. He also holds notable victories over Cain Velasquez, Alistair Overeem, Minotauro Nogueira, Mark Hunt, Travis Browne, Alexander Emelianenko, Gabriel Gonzaga, Antônio Silva and Roy Nelson.
Born in Porto Alegre, Brazil, Werdum started training in Brazilian jiu-jitsu after being choked unconscious with a triangle choke by his then-girlfriend's ex-boyfriend. He trained with Marcio Corleta at the Porto Alegre Academy, Winner Behring. After success in competitive Brazilian jiu-jitsu and submission grappling, he started his career in MMA. He arrived in Spain to join his mother, who had moved to the city of Madrid some years before. At the age of 22, soon after his arrival in Spain, when he was just a purple belt, he started teaching the art of Brazilian jiu-jitsu in Madrid and other cities of Spain. Despite only training with white and blue belts, he became a BJJ World Champion, being promoted to the rank of black belt by Master Sylvio Behring three years later.
Mixed martial arts careerEdit
Werdum's early fights were with the promotions Jungle Fight, Millennium Brawl, and World Absolute Fight. He boasted a 4–0–1 record, including a win against BJJ specialist Gabriel Gonzaga. He was Mirko Filipović’s sparring partner at that time and the Croat was the main reason for his debut in PRIDE.
PRIDE Fighting ChampionshipsEdit
In 2005, Werdum made his PRIDE debut against Tom Erikson, winning by submission. Later that year he faced Roman Zentsov in PRIDE Final Conflict 2005, he was able to defeat Zentsov by a triangle choke in 6:01 of the first round. Werdum then had the first loss in his MMA career, when he lost to Sergei Kharitonov via split decision in PRIDE 30. Then in early 2006, Werdum defeated Jon Olav Einemo by unanimous decision in PRIDE 31.
He accumulated a record of 3–1 in PRIDE before entering the 2006 Pride Open Weight Grand Prix. His first match of the tournament was against Dutch fighter Alistair Overeem, and he won via kimura in the second round. He then faced former PRIDE Heavyweight Champion, Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira in the quarter finals, losing via decision.
Ultimate Fighting ChampionshipEdit
Fabricio Werdum debuted in the UFC on April 21, 2007 at UFC 70: Nations Collide. He faced former UFC Heavyweight Champion Andrei Arlovski, losing via unanimous decision. He began to train in Brazil at Chute Boxe Academy, becoming more aggressive and showing improvement in his striking, particularly in Muay Thai attacks.
At UFC 80 on January 19, 2008, Werdum met Gabriel Gonzaga in a rematch. Werdum won the bout by TKO. He weathered an early striking onslaught only to secure the Muay Thai clinch and connect with several knee strikes before taking Gonzaga to the ground and finishing him with punches.
Werdum's next fight was against Brandon Vera at UFC 85. He defeated Vera by TKO in the 1st round. Werdum achieved full mount with less than 30 seconds to go in the round and connected with a number of unanswered punches. The decision to stop the bout was booed due to the small amount of time remaining in the round, although the official time of stoppage was 4:40.
In his next fight at UFC 90, Werdum was heavily favored to win but was knocked out in 1:20 of the first round via uppercut by debuting Junior dos Santos. After the loss Werdum's contract was terminated by the UFC. Since Werdum was not contacted directly about the termination he had no idea he had been cut and initially denied the news of him no longer being in the UFC as just a rumor.
After leaving the UFC Werdum then signed with Strikeforce. He made his debut at Strikeforce: Carano vs. Cyborg on August 15, 2009, against fellow UFC veteran Mike "MAK" Kyle. He won by submission in 1:24 of the first round. Werdum followed that up with a unanimous decision victory over Antônio "Bigfoot" Silva at Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Rogers.
Werdum faced former Pride Heavyweight Champion Fedor Emelianenko on June 26, 2010, at Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Werdum. In an enormous upset victory, Werdum forced Fedor to tap via triangle/armbar 1:09 into the first round. The victory ended Emelianenko's 28-fight unbeaten streak while propelling Werdum's status up the Heavyweight rankings. He was ranked as the third best Heavyweight in MMA by Sherdog. The victory over Fedor also gave him the distinction of being the only man to hold victories over both of the Emelianenko brothers.
A rematch with Alistair Overeem took place on June 18, 2011, at Strikeforce: Dallas as part of an eight-man Heavyweight Tournament. Werdum lost to Overeem by unanimous decision (30–27, 30–27, and 29–28). He has received some criticism for "pleading" Overeem to fight him on the ground in order to get into a position favourable to him due to his Brazilian jiu-jitsu background.
Ultimate Fighting Championship returnEdit
On November 8, 2011, Werdum made his return to the UFC via contract-signing. It was speculated that his return fight might be against Brendan Schaub, a fight he expressed an interest in. The bout, however, did not materialize.
Instead, for his return match, Werdum faced Roy Nelson at UFC 143 on February 4, 2012. He won the fight via unanimous decision (30–27, 30–27, and 30–27). The back and forth action earned Fight of the Night honors.
Werdum coached opposite Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira on the second season of The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil. The two met in a rematch at the conclusion of the season, on June 8, 2013, at UFC on Fuel TV: Nogueira vs. Werdum. He won the fight via verbal submission due to an armbar in the second round. The victory also gives him the distinction of being the only fighter to hold submission victories over both Fedor Emelianenko and Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira both whom were former PRIDE FC Heavyweight Champions.
Werdum faced Travis Browne at UFC on Fox 11 in a Heavyweight title eliminator bout. Despite being a betting underdog and considered at a disadvantage in terms of striking, Werdum dominated the fight for nearly all five rounds. He won the fight via unanimous decision (49–46, 50–45, and 50–45).
On April 29, 2014, the UFC announced that Werdum and current champion Cain Velasquez had been selected as coaches for the inaugural installment of The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America, with the two expected to face each other on November 15, 2014 at UFC 180.
On October 21, 2014, it was announced that Velasquez pulled out of the bout due to a knee injury. Werdum instead faced Mark Hunt for the interim UFC Heavyweight Championship at UFC 180. Despite being dropped by punches early on, he won the fight via TKO in the second round, becoming the new UFC interim Heavyweight Champion. The win also earned Werdum his first Performance of the Night bonus award.
A rescheduled bout with Velasquez took place on June 13, 2015, at UFC 188 in Mexico City. In a back-and-forth affair, Werdum won the fight in the third round by guillotine choke submission. The win earned Werdum his second consecutive Performance of the Night bonus award. With the victory, Werdum unified the UFC's heavyweight titles and became the undisputed champion.
Losing the Heavyweight ChampionshipEdit
A rematch with Velasquez was expected to take place on February 6, 2016, at UFC Fight Night 82. However, Velasquez pulled out of the bout due to a back injury on January 23 and was replaced by Stipe Miocic. On the following day, Werdum announced that he was pulling out of the event due to an injury as well. The bout with Miocic was rescheduled and took place on May 14, 2016, at UFC 198. Werdum lost the fight via knockout in the first round after rushing in with an attempted flurry of punches and was caught with a counter right hook, suffering his first defeat since June 2011.
Werdum was expected to face Ben Rothwell on September 10, 2016 at UFC 203. However, Rothwell pulled out of the fight on August 11 citing a knee injury and was replaced by former opponent Travis Browne. Werdum won the fight by unanimous decision. After the bout, Travis' coach Edmond Tarverdyan angrily confronted Werdum, causing Fabricio to push kick the coach in the chest and raise his hands to defend himself. This resulted in both fighter corners having to get involved to separate the two men. No disciplinary action was taken against Werdum for the incident.
Werdum was expected to face Cain Velasquez in a rematch at UFC 207 on December 30, 2016. However the Nevada State Athletic Commission failed to approve Velasquez to fight, determining after physical examinations and interviews that he was unfit to compete.
A third fight with Alistair Overeem took place on July 8, 2017 at UFC 213. Although coming close to finishing Overeem in the third round, Werdum lost the bout via somewhat controversial majority decision.
Werdum was expected to face Derrick Lewis on October 7, 2017 at UFC 216. However, the day of the event Lewis was unable to fight due to back issues. Werdum agreed to face last-minute replacement Walt Harris on the card. After securing a single leg takedown almost immediately, Werdum quickly secured back mount and transitioned to an armbar for the victory just over a minute into the fight.
Werdum was expected to face Alexey Oleynik on September 15, 2018 at UFC Fight Night 136. However on May 22, Fabrício Werdum was flagged for a potential USADA doping violation. In September 2018 it was revealed that the substance in question was trenbolone and as a result he was suspended from competition for 2 years. He will be eligible to return in May 2020.
Schools and instructionEdit
Until November 2006, Werdum was the Brazilian jiu-jitsu coach to Mirko Filipović and is associated with Team Werdum BJJ Academy, located in Zagreb, Croatia . Also until 2008 Fabricio Werdum was a BJJ head coach in Madrid, Spain for the Barcelo Boxing Gym. Werdum is currently training with Kings MMA team.
Werdum currently teaches in Venice, CA at his new school Werdum Combat Team.
Championships and accomplishmentsEdit
Mixed martial artsEdit
Fabricio has two daughters with his wife. Werdum can fluently speak Portuguese, English, and Spanish, having lived in Spain for 10 years, and as his mother is of Spanish descent. Werdum was previously a Spanish-language commentator for the UFC and often comes to the octagon with the Spanish flag, as well as the Brazilian one.
Mixed martial arts recordEdit
|Professional record breakdown|
|32 matches||23 wins||8 losses|
|Loss||23–8–1||Alexander Volkov||KO (punches)||UFC Fight Night: Werdum vs. Volkov||March 17, 2018||4||1:38||London, England|
|Win||23–7–1||Marcin Tybura||Decision (unanimous)||UFC Fight Night: Werdum vs. Tybura||November 19, 2017||5||5:00||Sydney, Australia|
|Win||22–7–1||Walt Harris||Submission (armbar)||UFC 216||October 7, 2017||1||1:05||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Loss||21–7–1||Alistair Overeem||Decision (majority)||UFC 213||July 8, 2017||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||21–6–1||Travis Browne||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 203||September 10, 2016||3||5:00||Cleveland, Ohio, United States|
|Loss||20–6–1||Stipe Miocic||KO (punch)||UFC 198||May 14, 2016||1||2:47||Curitiba, Brazil||Lost the UFC Heavyweight Championship.|
|Win||20–5–1||Cain Velasquez||Submission (guillotine choke)||UFC 188||June 13, 2015||3||2:13||Mexico City, Mexico||Won and unified the UFC Heavyweight Championship. Performance of the Night.|
|Win||19–5–1||Mark Hunt||TKO (flying knee and punches)||UFC 180||November 15, 2014||2||2:27||Mexico City, Mexico||Won the interim UFC Heavyweight Championship. Performance of the Night.|
|Win||18–5–1||Travis Browne||Decision (unanimous)||UFC on Fox: Werdum vs. Browne||April 19, 2014||5||5:00||Orlando, Florida, United States||UFC Heavyweight title eliminator.|
|Win||17–5–1||Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira||Submission (armbar)||UFC on Fuel TV: Nogueira vs. Werdum||June 8, 2013||2||2:41||Fortaleza, Brazil|
|Win||16–5–1||Mike Russow||TKO (punches)||UFC 147||June 23, 2012||1||2:28||Belo Horizonte, Brazil|
|Win||15–5–1||Roy Nelson||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 143||February 4, 2012||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Fight of the Night.|
|Loss||14–5–1||Alistair Overeem||Decision (unanimous)||Strikeforce: Overeem vs. Werdum||June 18, 2011||3||5:00||Dallas, Texas, United States||Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix Quarterfinal.|
|Win||14–4–1||Fedor Emelianenko||Submission (triangle armbar)||Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Werdum||June 26, 2010||1||1:09||San Jose, California, United States|
|Win||13–4–1||Antônio Silva||Decision (unanimous)||Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Rogers||November 7, 2009||3||5:00||Hoffman Estates, Illinois, United States|
|Win||12–4–1||Mike Kyle||Submission (guillotine choke)||Strikeforce: Carano vs. Cyborg||August 15, 2009||1||1:24||San Jose, California, United States|
|Loss||11–4–1||Junior dos Santos||KO (punches)||UFC 90||October 25, 2008||1||1:20||Rosemont, Illinois, United States|
|Win||11–3–1||Brandon Vera||TKO (punches)||UFC 85||June 7, 2008||1||4:40||London, England|
|Win||10–3–1||Gabriel Gonzaga||TKO (punches)||UFC 80||January 19, 2008||2||4:34||Newcastle upon Tyne, England|
|Loss||9–3–1||Andrei Arlovski||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 70||April 21, 2007||3||5:00||Manchester, England|
|Win||9–2–1||Alexander Emelianenko||Submission (arm-triangle choke)||2H2H: Pride & Honor||November 12, 2006||1||3:24||Rotterdam, Netherlands|
|Loss||8–2–1||Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira||Decision (unanimous)||Pride FC - Critical Countdown Absolute||July 1, 2006||3||5:00||Saitama, Japan||2006 Pride Open-Weight Grand Prix Quarterfinal.|
|Win||8–1–1||Alistair Overeem||Submission (kimura)||Pride FC - Total Elimination Absolute||May 5, 2006||2||3:43||Osaka, Japan||2006 Pride Open-Weight Grand Prix Opening Round.|
|Win||7–1–1||John-Olav Einemo||Decision (unanimous)||Pride 31 - Dreamers||February 26, 2006||3||5:00||Saitama, Japan|
|Loss||6–1–1||Sergei Kharitonov||Decision (split)||Pride 30||October 23, 2005||3||5:00||Saitama, Japan|
|Win||6–0–1||Roman Zentsov||Submission (triangle armbar)||Pride Final Conflict 2005||August 28, 2005||1||6:01||Saitama, Japan|
|Win||5–0–1||Tom Erikson||Submission (rear-naked choke)||Pride 29||February 20, 2005||1||5:29||Saitama, Japan|
|Win||4–0–1||Ebenezer Fontes Braga||KO (punch)||Jungle Fight 2||May 15, 2004||2||1:28||Manaus, Brazil|
|Win||3–0–1||Gabriel Gonzaga||TKO (punches)||Jungle Fight 1||September 13, 2003||3||2:11||Manaus, Brazil|
|Win||2–0–1||Kristof Midoux||Submission (triangle armbar)||WAFF 2: World Absolute Fight 2||March 22, 2003||1||4:11||Marrakech, Morocco|
|Draw||1–0–1||James Zikic||Draw||Millennium Brawl 8||September 22, 2002||3||5:00||High Wycombe, England||Werdum was deducted 1 point for an illegal knee to grounded opponent.|
|Win||1–0||Tengiz Tedoradze||Submission (triangle choke)||Millennium Brawl 7||June 16, 2002||1||N/A||High Wycombe, England|
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- "Fight Card – UFC Fight Night Werdum vs. Browne". UFC.com. Retrieved April 21, 2014.
- "Werdum in Akhmat Fight Club". expertmma.ru. Retrieved October 5, 2015.
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- "VIDEO - Joe Rogan gives his take on MMA's greatest heavyweight fighter of all time - BJPenn.com". May 12, 2016.
- Sylvio Behring Official Black Belt Family Tree Archived June 19, 2009, at the Wayback Machine. URL accessed on October 21, 2010.
- "Werdum On The UFC: They Kind Of Used Me And Threw Me Out". englj.com.
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- Staff (March 12, 2013). "Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira vs. Fabricio Werdum official for UFC on FUEL TV 10". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved March 12, 2013.
- Marrocco, Steven (January 13, 2014). "UFC on FOX 11 heads to Florida with Werdum vs. Browne, Tate vs. Carmouche". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved January 13, 2014.
- Cole, Ross (April 19, 2014). "Fabricio Werdum Outstrikes Travis Browne To Decision Victory At UFC On FOX 11". Fight of the Night. Retrieved April 24, 2014.
- Staff (April 29, 2014). "Cain Velasquez, Fabricio Werdum coach 'TUF: Latin America,' fight in November". mmajunkie.com.
- "Cain Velasquez Injured; Fabricio Werdum vs. Mark Hunt New UFC 180 Main Event". UFC. Retrieved July 12, 2015.
- "Cain Velasquez injures knee; Mark Hunt to fight Fabricio Werdum for interim heavyweight title". Yahoo Sports. October 22, 2014. Retrieved July 12, 2015.
- Chiari, Mike (November 15, 2014). "Werdum vs. Hunt Results: Winner, Recap and Analysis from UFC 180". bleacherreport.com.
- Erickson, Matt (November 15, 2014). "UFC 180 bonuses: Werdum, Gastelum, Briones, Cannetti win $50,000". mmajunkie.com.
- Staff (February 23, 2015). "Cain Velasquez vs. Fabricio Werdum official for UFC 188 in Mexico in June". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
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- "Werdum Stuns Cain Velasquez At UFC 188". BallerStatus.com. June 14, 2015.
- Staff (December 9, 2015). "Fabricio Werdum vs. Cain Velasquez title rematch confirmed for UFC 196". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved December 10, 2015.
- Dyce, Mike (January 24, 2016). "Cain Velasquez out, Stipe Miocic to fill in at UFC 196". fansided.com. Retrieved January 24, 2016.
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- "Werdum on standby For UFC 211 title fight". MMAmania.com. March 20, 2017. Retrieved March 21, 2017.
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- Super User. "Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Muay Thai Kickboxing, MMA school". Werdum Combat Team. Retrieved July 12, 2015.
- Khuzin, Abdullah (April 10, 2015). "Fabricio Werdum signed a contract with fight club "Akhmat"". grozny.tv.
- "MMAjunkie's 'Submission of the Month' for June: Here a choke, there a choke – MMAjunkie". MMAjunkie. Retrieved July 12, 2015.
- "Fabricio Werdum also pulls out of UFC 196 due to injury". January 26, 2016.
- Fabricio Werdum talks Antonio Silva's win over Fedor, Overeem y habla en espanol!. YouTube. February 13, 2011. Retrieved July 12, 2015.
- Cro Cop talks about the time he choked out Fabricio Werdum. YouTube. April 14, 2015. Retrieved July 12, 2015.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Fabricio Werdum.|
- Official website
- Fabricio Werdum BJJ Heroes
- "Fabrício Werdum". UFC.com.
- Professional MMA record for Fabrício Werdum from Sherdog
- PRIDE profile
| 18th UFC Heavyweight Champion
June 13, 2015 – May 14, 2016