Michael Chiesa

Michael Keith Chiesa[6] (/ˌkiˈɛsə/; born December 7, 1987) is an American mixed martial artist who currently competes in the welterweight division in the Ultimate Fighting Championship. A professional MMA competitor since 2008, Chiesa was the winner of FX's inaugural The Ultimate Fighter: Live. As of March 17, 2020, he is #8 in the UFC welterweight rankings.[7]

Michael Chiesa
BornMichael Keith Chiesa
(1987-12-07) December 7, 1987 (age 32)
Aurora, Colorado, U.S.
ResidenceSpokane, Washington, U.S.
Height6 ft 1 in (185 cm)[1]
Weight170 lb (77 kg; 12 st)
DivisionLightweight (155 lbs) (2011–2018)
Welterweight (170 lbs) (2008–2011, 2018–present)[2]
Reach75 12 in (192 cm)[1]
StyleSubmission Wrestling,
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Fighting out ofSpokane Valley, Washington, U.S.
TeamSik Jitsu Fighting Systems
Team Alpha Male
Teacher(s)Rick Little[4]
RankPurple belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu[5] under James Weed
Years active2008–present
Mixed martial arts record
By submission11
By decision6
By knockout1
By submission3
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Early life and backgroundEdit

Michael Keith Chiesa was born on December 7, 1987, in Aurora, Colorado. He was a "standout" wrestler at Shadle Park High School.

Mixed martial arts careerEdit

Early careerEdit

Chiesa began his professional mixed martial arts career in 2008. He fought for several regional promotions in the Pacific Northwest, going undefeated in his first seven fights,[8] before gaining an opportunity to appear on The Ultimate Fighter: Live reality show.[9]

The Ultimate FighterEdit

Chiesa was one of 32 lightweight fighters announced by the UFC to participate in first live season of The Ultimate Fighter reality show.[10]

Chiesa earned his way into The Ultimate Fighter house, and a $5,000 bonus, with a submission victory over Johnavan Vistante in the elimination rounds.[11] He was chosen as the fifth pick for Team Faber. Chiesa's terminally ill father died shortly after his victory.[12]

After teammate Al Iaquinta picked up the first win for Team Faber, his coach decided that Chiesa would fight Jeremy Larsen next. Chiesa would go on to defeat Larsen by unanimous decision after two rounds.[13]

For his quarter-final fight, Chiesa was matched up with the highly favored prospect, Justin Lawrence. After a hard-fought two rounds, the judges declared a draw and the fight went to a third, "sudden-victory" round. Early in the third round, Chiesa was able to reverse Lawrence on the ground, gain a mount position and win the fight by TKO, earning a $5,000 knock-out bonus and a place in the semi-finals.[14]

Chiesa was selected to fight Team Cruz fighter, James Vick, in the semi-final round. Chiesa won the fight via KO in the second round. He moved on to the finals against Team Faber teammate Al Iaquinta.[15]

Ultimate Fighting ChampionshipEdit

Chiesa officially made his UFC debut at The Ultimate Fighter 15 Finale on June 1, 2012, against fellow Team Faber teammate Al Iaquinta. Chiesa defeated Iaquinta by technical submission due to a rear naked choke 2:47 into the opening round thus becoming The Ultimate Fighter: Live's inaugural winner and received Submission of the Night honors for his efforts.

Chiesa was expected to face Rafaello Oliveira on December 8, 2012, at UFC on Fox 5.[16] However, Oliveira was forced out of the bout with a broken hand and replaced by Marcus LeVesseur.[17] Then, the week of the event, Chiesa was forced out of the bout with LeVesseur with the shingles and the bout was scrapped altogether.[18]

Chiesa next fought Anton Kuivanen on February 23, 2013, at UFC 157.[19] Chiesa submitted Kuivanen with a rear-naked choke in the second round.

Chiesa was expected to face Reza Madadi on July 27, 2013, at UFC on Fox 8.[20] However, on May 14, 2013, it was announced Madadi was pulled from the bout due to visa issues. Chiesa instead faced Jorge Masvidal.[21] Chiesa was stopped by Masvidal in the second round due to a submission, resulting in the first defeat in his professional career.

Chiesa next faced Ultimate Fighter winner Colton Smith on November 6, 2013, at UFC Fight Night 31.[22] He won the fight via submission in the second round. The win also earned Chiesa his second Submission of the Night bonus award.[23]

Chiesa faced Francisco Trinaldo at UFC 173 on May 24, 2014. He won the fight via unanimous decision.

Chiesa faced Joe Lauzon on September 5, 2014, at UFC Fight Night 50.[24] After a back and forth fight, Lauzon defeated Chiesa via TKO in the second round after opening a significant cut above Chiesa's right eye, forcing a doctor's stoppage.[25] The performance earned both participants Fight of the Night honors.[26]

Chiesa faced Mitch Clarke on April 4, 2015, at UFC Fight Night 63.[27] He won the fight by unanimous decision.

Chiesa faced Jim Miller on December 10, 2015, at UFC Fight Night 80.[28] He won the fight via submission in the second round.[29] The bout also earned Chiesa his second Fight of the Night bonus award.[30]

Chiesa faced Beneil Dariush on April 16, 2016, at UFC on Fox 19.[31] He won the bout via submission in the second round and was also awarded a Performance of the Night bonus.[32][33]

Chiesa was expected to face Tony Ferguson on July 13, 2016, at UFC Fight Night 91.[34] However, Chiesa pulled out of the fight on June 27 citing a back injury and was replaced by promotional newcomer Lando Vannata.[35][36]

Chiesa faced Kevin Lee on June 25, 2017, at UFC Fight Night 112.[37] At a UFC summer kick off press conference in association with UFC 211, Kevin Lee mentioned Chiesa's mother had tickets to the show, in which Chiesa responded "don't you ever talk about my mom". This verbal altercation ultimately led to punches being thrown, and both were escorted from the stage.[38][39] Chiesa lost the fight via technical submission at the end of the first round.[40] He appealed to the Oklahoma State Athletic Commission to overturn the defeat, claiming referee Mario Yamasaki erred both in stopping the fight despite no tapout nor loss of consciousness and in allowing Lee to use illegal downward elbows, which cut his head.[41]

Albeit having one fight left on his contract, Chiesa signed a new four-fight deal with UFC on the end of August 2017.[42]

Chiesa was expected to face Anthony Pettis on April 7, 2018, at UFC 223; however, the bout was cancelled after a backstage incident with Conor McGregor on April 5, 2018. McGregor threw a dolly at a UFC bus that Chiesa was travelling on and broke a window. Chiesa was hit by shards of glass and needed hospitalization subsequently resulting in the fight's cancellation.[43]

On September 10, 2018, Chiesa told the media he has sued McGregor for assault, battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress. He also sued Barclay's Center for negligence, although he didn't disclose the amounts or further details of either of the cases. [44]

The bout with Pettis was rescheduled to UFC 226.[45] At weight-ins, Chiesa weighed in at 157.5 pounds, 1.5 pounds over the lightweight limit of 156 pounds. As a result, the fight proceeded at a catchweight bout and Chiesa forfeited 30% of his purse to Pettis.[46] Chiesa lost the fight via submission in round two.[47] Shortly after the loss, Chiesa announced going up to welterweight division.[2]

Chiesa faced Carlos Condit on December 29, 2018 at UFC 232.[48] He won the fight via submission in the second round.[49]

Chiesa faced Diego Sanchez on July 6, 2019 at UFC 239.[50] He won the fight via unanimous decision.[51] Chiesa dedicated the win to the memory of Jess Roskelley.[52]

Chiesa faced Rafael dos Anjos on January 25, 2020 at UFC Fight Night 166.[53] He won the fight via unanimous decision.[54]

Film and televisionEdit

Chiesa was featured in the "award-winning" mixed martial arts documentary Fight Life. The film is directed by James Z. Feng and was released in 2013.[55]

Championships and achievementsEdit

Mixed martial arts recordEdit

Professional record breakdown
21 matches 17 wins 4 losses
By knockout 0 1
By submission 11 3
By decision 6 0
Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 17–4 Rafael dos Anjos Decision (unanimous) UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. dos Santos January 25, 2020 3 5:00 Raleigh, North Carolina, United States
Win 16–4 Diego Sanchez Decision (unanimous) UFC 239 July 6, 2019 3 5:00 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 15–4 Carlos Condit Submission (kimura) UFC 232 December 29, 2018 2 0:56 Inglewood, California, United States Welterweight debut.
Loss 14–4 Anthony Pettis Submission (triangle armbar) UFC 226 July 6, 2018 2 0:52 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Catchweight (157.5 lbs) bout; Chiesa missed weight.
Loss 14–3 Kevin Lee Technical Submission (rear-naked choke) UFC Fight Night: Chiesa vs. Lee June 25, 2017 1 4:37 Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States
Win 14–2 Beneil Dariush Submission (standing rear-naked choke)[58] UFC on Fox: Teixeira vs. Evans April 16, 2016 2 1:20 Tampa, Florida, United States Performance of the Night.
Win 13–2 Jim Miller Submission (rear-naked choke) UFC Fight Night: Namajunas vs. VanZant December 10, 2015 2 2:57 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Fight of the Night.
Win 12–2 Mitch Clarke Decision (unanimous) UFC Fight Night: Mendes vs. Lamas April 4, 2015 3 5:00 Fairfax, Virginia, United States
Loss 11–2 Joe Lauzon TKO (doctor stoppage) UFC Fight Night: Jacare vs. Mousasi September 5, 2014 2 2:14 Mashantucket, Connecticut, United States Fight of the Night.
Win 11–1 Francisco Trinaldo Decision (unanimous) UFC 173 May 24, 2014 3 5:00 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 10–1 Colton Smith Submission (rear-naked choke) UFC: Fight for the Troops 3 November 6, 2013 2 1:41 Fort Campbell, Kentucky, United States Submission of the Night.
Loss 9–1 Jorge Masvidal Submission (D'Arce choke) UFC on Fox: Johnson vs. Moraga July 27, 2013 2 4:59 Seattle, Washington, United States
Win 9–0 Anton Kuivanen Submission (rear-naked choke) UFC 157 February 23, 2013 2 2:29 Anaheim, California, United States
Win 8–0 Al Iaquinta Technical Submission (rear-naked choke) The Ultimate Fighter: Live Finale June 1, 2012 1 2:47 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Won The Ultimate Fighter 15 Lightweight Tournament. Submission of the Night.
Win 7–0 Darrell Fenner Submission (rear-naked choke) CageSport 16 October 1, 2011 1 0:45 Tacoma, Washington, United States Welterweight bout.
Win 6–0 Matt Coble Submission (rear-naked choke) Lords of the Cage 6 July 16, 2011 1 2:13 Manson, Washington, United States
Win 5–0 Evian Rodriguez Submission (rear-naked choke) Lords of the Cage 5 April 28, 2011 1 1:03 Airway Heights, Washington, United States
Win 4–0 Darcy James Submission (D'Arce choke) Battlefield Fight League 7 March 26, 2011 1 0:53 Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada
Win 3–0 Andy Paves Decision (unanimous) Rumble on the Ridge 14 October 20, 2010 3 5:00 Snoqualmie, Washington, United States
Win 2–0 Brian Wilson Decision (unanimous) Arnett Promotions 3 February 21, 2009 3 5:00 Clarkston, Washington, United States
Win 1–0 Charon Spain Submission (triangle choke) Thunder and Lightning August 16, 2008 2 N/A Lapwai, Idaho, United States


Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 4–0 James Vick TKO (punches) The Ultimate Fighter: Live May 25, 2012 (Live airdate) 2 1:55 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States The Ultimate Fighter: Live Semi-Final round
Win 3–0 Justin Lawrence TKO (punches) May 11, 2012 (Live airdate) 3 1:02 The Ultimate Fighter: Live Quarter-Final round
Win 2–0 Jeremy Larsen Decision (unanimous) April 6, 2012 (Live airdate) 2 5:00 The Ultimate Fighter: Live Preliminary round
Win 1–0 Johnavan Vistante Submission (rear-naked choke) March 9, 2012 (Live airdate) 1 2:05 The Ultimate Fighter: Live Elimination round

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "Michael Chiesa UFC Profile". ufc.com.
  2. ^ a b Dan Hiergesell (July 21, 2018). "Michael Chiesa officially announces move up to welterweight". mmamania.com.
  3. ^ "UFC 223 main-card breakdown: Three potential barnburners in Brooklyn". MMAjunkie. 2018-04-06. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
  4. ^ "Spokane Valley's Michael Chiesa dedicates UFC 239 victory to Jess Roskelley | The Spokesman-Review". www.spokesman.com. Retrieved 2019-07-15.
  5. ^ "Mike Chiesa revela ser fã do jiu-jítsu brasileiro: 'Foi o que me conquistou'". SporTV. February 23, 2013.
  6. ^ "Mike Chiesa ("Maverick") | MMA Fighter Page". Tapology. Retrieved 2016-04-28.
  7. ^ "Rankings | UFC". www.ufc.com. Retrieved 2020-01-29.
  8. ^ "Michael "Maverick" Chiesa MMA Stats, Pictures, News, Videos, Biography". Sherdog.com. 1987-12-07. Retrieved 2016-04-28.
  9. ^ "'The Ultimate Fighter 15' cast unveiled with 32 lightweight fighters". MMAJunkie.com. February 27, 2012. Archived from the original on February 29, 2012. Retrieved March 19, 2012.
  10. ^ "'The Ultimate Fighter 15' cast unveiled with 32 lightweight fighters". MMAJunkie.com. February 27, 2012. Archived from the original on February 29, 2012. Retrieved February 27, 2012.
  11. ^ "Mixed martial arts results, Season 15 – The Ultimate Fighter" (PDF). State of Nevada, Department of Business and Industry Athletic Commission. March 9, 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on June 17, 2012. Retrieved March 25, 2012.
  12. ^ "Michael Chiesa continues march to honor late father on 'The Ultimate Fighter'". Yahoo Sports. 6 April 2012.
  13. ^ "Episode No. 5 recap: 'The Ultimate Fighter: Live'". MMAJunkie.com. April 6, 2012. Retrieved May 14, 2012.
  14. ^ "Episode No. 10 recap: 'The Ultimate Fighter: Live'". MMAJunkie.com. May 11, 2012. Archived from the original on May 14, 2012. Retrieved May 14, 2012.
  15. ^ "Episode No. 12 Recap: 'The Ultimate Fighter: Live'". mmajunkie.com. May 25, 2012.
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  17. ^ "Replacement Marcus LeVesseur meets Michael Chiesa at UFC on FOX 5". MMAjunkie.com. October 24, 2012. Archived from the original on October 26, 2012.
  18. ^ "Michael Chiesa ill, scratches from Saturday's UFC on FOX 5 event". MMAjunkie.com. 2012-12-03. Retrieved 2012-12-03.
  19. ^ "Mike Chiesa vs. Anton Kuivanen added to UFC 157 fight card on Feb. 23 in Anaheim". mmamania.com. 2012-12-20. Retrieved 2012-12-20.
  20. ^ "Michael Chiesa vs. Reza Madadi added to UFC on FOX 8 in Seattle". MMAjunkie.com. 2013-04-23. Retrieved 2013-04-23.
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  22. ^ John Petit (2013-08-23). "Michael Chiesa Vs Colton Smith Confirmed For Fight For The Troops". fighters.com. Archived from the original on 2013-10-04. Retrieved 2013-08-23.
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  27. ^ C.J. Tuttle (2015-01-18). "Michael Chiesa-Mitch Clarke added to UFC Fight Night". sherdog.com. Retrieved 2015-01-18.
  28. ^ Elias Cepeda (2015-09-09). "Jim Miller vs. Michael Chiesa targeted for Dec. 10 UFC Fight Pass card". foxsports.com. Retrieved 2015-09-09.
  29. ^ Ben Fowlkes (2015-12-10). "UFC Fight Night 80 results: Michael Chiesa submits Jim Miller with second-round choke". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2015-12-10.
  30. ^ "UFC Fight Night 80 bonuses: Namajunas earns $50,000 for domination of VanZant". mmajunkie.com. 2015-12-11. Retrieved 2015-12-12.
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  32. ^ Brent Brookhouse (2016-04-16). "UFC on FOX 19 results: Michael Chiesa taps Beneil Dariush in second round". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2016-04-16.
  33. ^ "UFC on FOX 19 bonuses: Teixeira, Chiesa, Zaleski dos Santos, Akhmedov net $50k". mmajunkie.com. 2016-04-16. Retrieved 2016-04-16.
  34. ^ Helwani, Ariel (2016-05-06). "Tony Ferguson vs. Michael Chiesa in the works for UFC's South Dakota debut". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 2016-05-06.
  35. ^ John Morgan (2016-06-27). "Michael Chiesa out at UFC Fight Night 91, UFC seeks new opponent for Tony Ferguson". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2016-06-27.
  36. ^ Tristen Critchfield (2016-06-28). "Tony Ferguson to face newcomer Landon Vannata at UFC Fight Night Sioux Falls". sherdog.com. Retrieved 2016-06-28.
  37. ^ Marc Raimondi (2017-03-30). "Michael Chiesa returns to face Kevin Lee in UFC Fight Night 112 main event". mmafighting.com. Retrieved 2017-03-30.
  38. ^ "Dana White jokes about scuffle between Lee and Chiesa". Bloody Elbow. 2017-05-13. Retrieved 2017-05-14.
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  41. ^ "Michael Chiesa Appeals UFC Fight Night 112 Loss to Kevin Lee, Cites 'Referee Error'". Sherdog. 2017-06-29.
  42. ^ Danny Segura (2017-08-30). "Michael Chiesa signs new four-fight deal with the UFC". mmafighting.com.
  43. ^ Shaun Al-Shatti (2018-04-08). "Michael Chiesa vs. Anthony Pettis scratched from UFC 223 after Conor McGregor incident". mmafighting.com.
  44. ^ Nathan Zur (September 11, 2018). "Michael Chiesa Files Lawsuit Against Conor McGregor Over Bus Attack". sherdog.com.
  45. ^ "Michael Chiesa vs. Anthony Pettis rescheduled for UFC 226". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 2018-05-01.
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  49. ^ Myers, Thomas (2018-12-29). "UFC 232 results: Michael Chiesa submits Carlos Condit with arm-wrenching kimura". MMAmania.com. Retrieved 2018-12-30.
  50. ^ Ariel Helwani (2019-04-09). "Diego Sanchez to fight Michael Chiesa at UFC 239". espn.com. Retrieved 2019-04-09.
  51. ^ Doherty, Dan (2019-07-06). "UFC 239 Results: Michael Chiesa Effortlessly Dominates Diego Sanchez". Cageside Press. Retrieved 2019-07-07.
  52. ^ "Spokane Valley's Michael Chiesa dedicates UFC 239 victory to Jess Roskelley | The Spokesman-Review". www.spokesman.com. Retrieved 2019-07-15.
  53. ^ DNA, MMA. "Rafael Dos Anjos treft Michael Chiesa tijdens UFC Raleigh". Retrieved 2019-11-22.
  54. ^ McClory, Mike (2020-01-25). "UFC Raleigh Results: Michael Chiesa Impresses with Dominant Win Over RDA". Cageside Press. Retrieved 2020-01-26.
  55. ^ "FIGHT LIFE - MMA Documentary by James Z. Feng". Fightlife.tv. Archived from the original on 2009-07-16. Retrieved 2016-04-28.
  56. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on December 19, 2013. Retrieved December 18, 2013.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  57. ^ "MMAjunkie's 'Submission of the Month' for December: One arm does the charm". mmajunkie.com. January 2, 2019.
  58. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4OO5CWZLbxI
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External linksEdit