Roy Nelson (fighter)
Roy Nelson (born June 20, 1976) is an American mixed martial artist who competes in the Heavyweight division of Bellator MMA. A professional competitor since 2004, he formerly competed for the UFC, EliteXC, the IFL, BodogFIGHT, and was the winner of The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights. Nelson is also the former IFL Heavyweight Champion, competing under Ken Shamrock and the Lion's Den.
June 20, 1976 |
Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.
|Other names||Big Country|
|Height||6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)|
|Weight||260 lb (118 kg; 18 st 8 lb)|
|Reach||72.0 in (183 cm)|
|Fighting out of||Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.|
|Trainer||Boxing: Jeff Mayweather
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu: Renzo Gracie
|Rank||Black sash in Kung Fu
Black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Renzo Gracie
|Years active||2004 – present (MMA)|
|Mixed martial arts record|
|Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog|
Nelson was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada and attended Cimarron-Memorial High School, where he competed in wrestling, football, and baseball. Nelson began training in Ark Wong's Ng Ga Kuen  Shaolin Kung Fu when he was around 16 years old. Nelson worked briefly as a warehouse worker in 1999. Nelson originally began training in Brazilian jiu-jitsu under UFC veteran John Lewis in 2000 and four years later, Nelson began his own career in mixed martial arts. Nelson has been a long time student of Brazilian jiu-jitsu master Renzo Gracie, who granted him a black belt on August 26, 2009 and has competed at the Abu Dhabi Grappling Championships.
Mixed martial arts careerEdit
Prior to Nelson's professional mixed martial arts career, he played rugby for the Las Vegas Blackjacks for two seasons (2002-2003).
Nelson made his professional mixed martial arts debut at a tournament on April 17, 2004. Nelson won both of his fights, winning the Rage on the River Heavyweight Tournament. Nelson compiled a record of 6-1 before being signed by the IFL.
As a member of Ken Shamrock's Lion's Den, Nelson was asked to become a member of the IFL's Nevada Lions in 2007, and made his promotional debut at IFL: Oakland on January 19, 2007 against veteran Vince Lucero. Nelson won via TKO in the first round.
In the 2007 IFL World Grand Prix, Nelson became the Heavyweight Champion, defeating Antoine Jaoude on December 29, 2007. Nelson successfully defended his title twice, before the IFL ceased operations.
After the IFL ceased operations Nelson took a fight with EliteXC on 10 days' notice against former UFC Heavyweight Champion Andrei Arlovski. Roy Nelson lost via KO in the second round; however, controversy broke out over Nelson being stood up by the referee in the first round from side control, while staying active and working on a kimura. He then went on to fight for Roy Jones Jr.'s Square Ring Promotions against Jeff Monson. This fight also ended in a controversial loss for Nelson. According to the TV commentators and most MMA media, Nelson won the bout. However, Monson was awarded a unanimous decision.
The Ultimate FighterEdit
Nelson was one of the sixteen fighters in The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights. He provided commentary on the show for multiple websites, including weekly Q&A sessions about each individual episode for USA Today's Fighting Stances and a blog for SpikeTV.com. In his first fight of the show, Nelson defeated former street-fighter Kimbo Slice via TKO stoppage in the second round with repeated punches to the head in the crucifix position. The broadcast was the highest rated MMA show in U.S. history with a 3.7 rating. The fight itself had 6 million viewers.
In the quarterfinals, Nelson defeated Justin Wren in a two-round majority decision. In the semifinals, Nelson defeated James McSweeney via strikes in the first round again utilizing the crucifix position. He defeated Brendan Schaub at The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights Finale to become the winner of The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights. In the finale, Nelson knocked out Schaub at 3:45 into the first round with a right hook to Schaub's left temple and then hit Schaub on the ground with one punch to the face before the referee pulled Nelson off Schaub. With the win, Nelson earned a six-figure contract with the UFC.
Ultimate Fighting ChampionshipEdit
In his first fight since The Ultimate Fighter Finale, Nelson knocked out Stefan Struve after 39 seconds in the first round at the co-main event of UFC Fight Night 21 on March 31, 2010, winning his second straight Knockout of the Night Bonus. Nelson was scheduled to fight Cheick Kongo, though the bout was cancelled after Kongo withdrew. Nelson instead faced Junior dos Santos at UFC 117 in a bout to determine the #1 contender (after Cain Velasquez) to the UFC Heavyweight Championship. Nelson lost by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-27), but was able to withstand the varied attacks of dos Santos, becoming the first man to take dos Santos to a decision. Nelson was scheduled to face Shane Carwin at UFC 125. Carwin, however, had to pull out of the fight due to a back injury. Nelson was pulled off the card altogether.
On November 14, 2010, UFC President Dana White announced that Nelson's UFC career would be on hold due to Nelson being contractually bound to another fight promotion. White declined to specifically name the promotion, but sources close to Nelson confirmed that Roy Jones Jr.'s Square Ring Promotions claimed to have Nelson tied down. Nelson stated on the MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani that this is old news and that he is still able to fight in the UFC with no problems.
Nelson faced Frank Mir on May 28, 2011 at UFC 130 and lost by unanimous decision. UFC president Dana White criticized Nelson's performance after the fight for Nelson's lack of conditioning. Nelson blamed a bout with the flu for his poor performance. Nelson indicated that he has plans of cutting weight and fighting in the light heavyweight division at some point in the future.
Nelson was scheduled to face Antônio Silva on May 26, 2012 at UFC 146, but Silva was moved up to fight Cain Velasquez. Nelson was then briefly expected to face Gabriel Gonzaga. However, Gonzaga himself was forced out of the bout with an injury and replaced by Dave Herman, who Nelson knocked out in 51 seconds. He earned Knockout of the Night honors due to his performance. Joe Rogan said on the live broadcast that "When Herman sat down on his ass, he had no idea where he was".
It was announced on July 12, 2012 that Nelson would be coaching on the show, The Ultimate Fighter, against fellow heavyweight Shane Carwin, with the two expected to face each other on December 15, 2012 at The Ultimate Fighter: Team Carwin vs. Team Nelson Finale. On November 14, it was announced that Shane Carwin injured his knee and wouldn't be able to fight. On November 15, it was reported that Nelson would face Matt Mitrione at the TUF 16 Finale. Nelson defeated Mitrione via first round TKO.
Nelson faced Stipe Miocic on June 15, 2013 at UFC 161. Miocic defeated Nelson via unanimous decision. There was speculation about his MMA future because his contract was expiring, but Nelson renewed it soon after.
Nelson faced Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira on April 11, 2014 in the main event at UFC Fight Night 39. After dropping Nogueira several times with punches in the first round, Nelson finished the fight via knockout with an overhand right. The win also earned Nelson his first Performance of the Night bonus award. Nelson broke his right hand during the fight for which he required surgery in order to repair.
Nelson next faced Mark Hunt on September 20, 2014 in the main event at UFC Fight Night 52. Nelson lost the fight via knockout in the second round. It was his first loss by knockout, and his first finished fight outside of round 1 in a scheduled 5-round fight.
Nelson faced Antônio Silva on September 24, 2016 at UFC Fight Night 95. He won the fight by knockout in the second round. After the fight, out of frustration with what he thought was a late stoppage, Nelson push-kicked referee John McCarthy.
In May 2017, it was announced that Nelson's contract with the UFC had expired in April and that he had a signed multi-fight contract with Bellator MMA. He is expected to compete in a Bellator promotion by the end of the year, and it will be his first non-UFC related match in just under 8 years
Championships and accomplishmentsEdit
Mixed martial artsEdit
- Ultimate Fighting Championship
- The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights Tournament Winner
- Fight of the Night (One time)
- Knockout of the Night (Four times)
- Performance of the Night (One time)
- International Fight League
- Rage on the River
- Rage on the River Heavyweight Tournament Winner
- Abu Dhabi Combat Club
- 2003 ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championships Quarterfinalist
- Grapplers Quest
- 2003 Grapplers Quest Superfight Champion
Mixed martial arts recordEdit
|Professional record breakdown|
|36 matches||22 wins||14 losses|
|Loss||22–14||Alexander Volkov||Decision (unanimous)||UFC on Fox: Johnson vs. Reis||April 15, 2017||3||5:00||Kansas City, Missouri, United States|
|Win||22–13||Antônio Silva||KO (punches)||UFC Fight Night: Cyborg vs. Lansberg||September 24, 2016||2||4:10||Brasília, Brazil|
|Loss||21–13||Derrick Lewis||Decision (split)||UFC Fight Night: dos Anjos vs. Alvarez||July 7, 2016||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||21–12||Jared Rosholt||Decision (unanimous)||UFC Fight Night: Hendricks vs. Thompson||February 6, 2016||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Loss||20–12||Josh Barnett||Decision (unanimous)||UFC Fight Night: Barnett vs. Nelson||September 27, 2015||5||5:00||Saitama, Japan|
|Loss||20–11||Alistair Overeem||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 185||March 14, 2015||3||5:00||Dallas, Texas, United States|
|Loss||20–10||Mark Hunt||KO (punch)||UFC Fight Night: Hunt vs. Nelson||September 20, 2014||2||3:00||Saitama, Japan|
|Win||20–9||Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira||KO (punch)||UFC Fight Night: Nogueira vs. Nelson||April 11, 2014||1||3:37||Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates||Performance of the Night.|
|Loss||19–9||Daniel Cormier||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 166||October 19, 2013||3||5:00||Houston, Texas, United States|
|Loss||19–8||Stipe Miocic||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 161||June 15, 2013||3||5:00||Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada|
|Win||19–7||Cheick Kongo||KO (punches)||UFC 159||April 27, 2013||1||2:03||Newark, New Jersey, United States||Knockout of the Night.|
|Win||18–7||Matt Mitrione||TKO (punches)||The Ultimate Fighter: Team Carwin vs. Team Nelson Finale||December 15, 2012||1||2:58||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||17–7||Dave Herman||KO (punch)||UFC 146||May 26, 2012||1||0:51||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Knockout of the Night.|
|Loss||16–7||Fabrício Werdum||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 143||February 4, 2012||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Fight of the Night.|
|Win||16–6||Mirko Cro Cop||TKO (punches)||UFC 137||October 29, 2011||3||1:30||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Loss||15–6||Frank Mir||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 130||May 28, 2011||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Loss||15–5||Junior dos Santos||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 117||August 7, 2010||3||5:00||Oakland, California, United States|
|Win||15–4||Stefan Struve||TKO (punches)||UFC Fight Night: Florian vs. Gomi||March 31, 2010||1||0:39||Charlotte, North Carolina, United States||Knockout of the Night.|
|Win||14–4||Brendan Schaub||KO (punch)||The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights Finale||December 5, 2009||1||3:45||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Won The Ultimate Fighter 10 Tournament. Knockout of the Night.|
|Loss||13–4||Jeff Monson||Decision (unanimous)||SRP: March Badness||March 21, 2009||3||5:00||Pensacola, Florida, United States|
|Loss||13–3||Andrei Arlovski||KO (punch)||EliteXC: Heat||October 4, 2008||2||3:14||Sunrise, Florida, United States|
|Win||13–2||Brad Imes||KO (punch)||IFL: Connecticut||May 16, 2008||1||3:55||Uncasville, Connecticut, United States||Defended the IFL Heavyweight Championship.|
|Win||12–2||Fabiano Scherner||TKO (punches)||IFL: Las Vegas||February 29, 2008||1||3:20||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Defended the IFL Heavyweight Championship.|
|Win||11–2||Antoine Jaoude||KO (punch)||IFL: World Grand Prix Finals||December 29, 2007||2||0:22||Uncasville, Connecticut, United States||Won the IFL Heavyweight Championship.|
|Win||10–2||Bryan Vetell||TKO (punches)||IFL: World Grand Prix Semifinals||November 3, 2007||3||1:01||Chicago, Illinois, United States||IFL 2007 Heavyweight GP Semifinal.|
|Win||9–2||Shane Ott||Decision (unanimous)||IFL: Las Vegas||June 16, 2007||3||4:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Loss||8–2||Ben Rothwell||Decision (split)||IFL: Moline||April 7, 2007||3||4:00||Moline, Illinois, United States|
|Win||8–1||Mario Rinaldi||TKO (punches)||BodogFIGHT: Costa Rica Combat||February 17, 2007||1||2:38||San José, Costa Rica|
|Win||7–1||Vince Lucero||TKO (punches)||IFL: Oakland||January 19, 2007||1||1:55||Oakland, California, United States|
|Loss||6–1||Josh Curran||Decision (unanimous)||BodogFIGHT: Clash of Nations||December 16, 2006||3||5:00||Saint Petersburg, Russia|
|Win||6–0||Jerome Smith||Submission (arm-triangle choke)||FightForce: Butte Brawl 2||July 22, 2006||1||4:13||Butte, Montana, United States|
|Win||5–0||Jason Godsey||Submission (rear-naked choke)||FightForce: Butte Brawl 1||May 6, 2006||1||4:42||Butte, Montana, United States|
|Win||4–0||Michael Buchkovich||Submission (rear-naked choke)||World Extreme Fighting 17||April 1, 2006||1||0:56||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||3–0||Ray Seraile||Submission (punches)||PXC 3: Return of the Enforcer||August 28, 2004||2||3:41||Mangilao, Guam|
|Win||2–0||Jerry Vrbanovic||Decision (split)||Rage on the River||April 17, 2004||3||3:00||Redding, California, United States||Rage on the River Heavyweight Tournament Final.|
|Win||1–0||Bo Cantrell||Submission (hammerlock)||Rage on the River||April 17, 2004||3||2:52||Redding, California, United States||Rage on the River Heavyweight Tournament Semifinal.|
Mixed martial arts exhibition recordEdit
|Exhibition record breakdown|
|3 matches||3 wins||0 losses|
|Win||3–0||James McSweeney||TKO (punches)||The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights||1||4:13||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Semi-finals.|
|Win||2–0||Justin Wren||Decision (majority)||The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights||2||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Quarter-finals.|
|Win||1–0||Kimbo Slice||TKO (punches)||The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights||June 10, 2009||2||2:01||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Preliminary bout.|
- "Fight Card - UFC Fight Night Barnett vs. Nelson". UFC.com. Retrieved September 27, 2015.
- "Roy Nelson - Official UFC Fighter Profile". UFC.com. Retrieved September 27, 2015.
- "Roy Nelson". ESPN.GO.COM. 2010-06-22. Retrieved 2010-06-22.
- "Introducing "The Ultimate Fighter Heavyweights": Roy Nelson". Retrieved 5 September 2015.
- "Roy "Big Country" Nelson Profile". Kenshamrock.com. 2010-12-30. Retrieved 2010-12-30.
- "Flashback to 2003: Roy Nelson beats Frank Mir, Brandon Vera, and Diego Sanchez to be crowned Grapplers Quest Superfight Champion". Grapplersquest.com. 2010-01-18. Retrieved 2010-12-30.
- "Roy Nelson Interview". www.octagonbuzz.com. 2008-10-09.
- "MMANews.com Exclusive: Interview With Roy Nelson". www.mmanews.com. 2008-10-08.
- "Monson takes an odd decision from Nelson". sports.yahoo.com. 2009-03-22.
- "Monson earns controversial win, Lashley smothers Guida at "March Badness"". mmajunkie.com. 2009-03-22.
- "Vida e Saúde". Vida e Saúde. Retrieved 5 September 2015.
- "TUF's Nelson dishes on Episode 1". Usatoday.com. 2009-09-16. Retrieved 2010-12-30.
- "Roy Nelson: Introductions". Ultimatefighter.com. 2009-09-17. Retrieved 2009-10-01.
- "Kimbo Slice vs Roy Nelson Results". Blitzcorner.com. 2009-10-01. Retrieved 2010-12-30.
- Wrestling Observer Newsletter, October 12, 2009 issue
- "UFC FIGHT NIGHT 21 RESULTS, PLAY-BY-PLAY, & PICS". Mmaweekly.com. 2010-03-31. Retrieved 2010-12-30.
- "Nelson takes 39 seconds to turn on the power". sports.yahoo.com. Retrieved August 7, 2010.
- "Cheick Kongo injured, no confirmation on Roy Nelson matchup, nor UFC 116". RIDDUM.com. May 4, 2010.
- "Roy Nelson vs. Junior Dos Santos in the works for UFC 117 main card". MMAjunkie.com.com. Retrieved May 10, 2010.
- "Lesnar vs. Velasquez up next for UFC title; dos Santos vs. Nelson winner on deck". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved August 8, 2010.
- "UFC 117 winner Junior dos Santos gets his heavyweight title shot". mmajunkie.com. August 8, 2010.
- "UFC 125 official for Jan. 1 with Edgar-Maynard, Carwin-Nelson co-headliners". mmajunkie.com. October 14, 2010.
- "Fight Update *Updated*". shane-carwin.com. October 26, 2010.
- "White: Roy Nelson's UFC career on hold until outside contract issues resolved". Retrieved 14 November 2010.
- "Despite Contract Issues, Roy Nelson Intends to Fight in 2011". Mmafighting.com. 2010-11-22. Retrieved 2010-12-30.
- "Contract issues resolved, Roy Nelson vs. Frank Mir targeted for UFC 130". mmajunkie.com. January 7, 2011.
- "Big Country Nelson will 'die' trying to make 205lbs". espn.co.uk. August 16, 2011.
- Haber, Scott (July 13, 2011). "Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic vs. Roy Nelson Planned for UFC 137". bloodyelbow.com.
- "Roy Nelson vs. Fabrício Werdum slotted for UFC 143 in February". mmajunkie.com. December 14, 2011.
- "Antonio Silva vs. Roy Nelson slated for UFC 146 in Las Vegas". mmajunkie.com. March 7, 2012. Retrieved March 7, 2012.
- "Gabriel Gonzaga fills open slot against Roy Nelson at UFC 146". mmajunkie.com. April 23, 2012. Retrieved April 23, 2012.
- "Roy Nelson vs Dave Herman booked with Gabriel Gonzaga injured". mmamania.com. May 2, 2012. Retrieved May 2, 2012.
- "A Ranging Right". bleacherreport.com. May 27, 2012. Retrieved May 27, 2012.
- "Shane Carwin, Roy Nelson Named Coaches for 'TUF 16' on FX". sherdog.com. 2012-07-12.
- "TUF 16 Finale, not UFC on FX 6, slated for Dec. 15 in Las Vegas". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved August 30, 2012.
- "Matt Mitrione Steps In For Injured Shane Carwin Against Roy Nelson At ‘TUF 16’ Finale". sherdog.com. November 15, 2012. Retrieved November 15, 2012.
- "Kongo vs. Nelson added to UFC 159". mmajunkie.com. January 29, 2013.
- "Roy Nelson and Stipe Miocic Added to UFC 161 Card". TopMMANews.com. May 21, 2013.
- Shaun, Al-Shatti (July 22, 2013). "Roy Nelson re-signs with UFC, meets Daniel Cormier in UFC 166 co-main event". MMA Fighting. Vox Media. Retrieved July 22, 2013.
- Mike Chiapetta (2014-01-30). "Roy Nelson vs. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira set for UFC Abu Dhabi show". msn.foxsports.com. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
- Gene Mrosko (2014-04-11). "UFC Fight Night 39 results: Roy Nelson knocks out Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira in brutal fashion". mmamania.com. Retrieved 2014-04-11.
- Stephen Douglas (2014-04-11). "Roy Nelson knocked out "Big Nog" cold at UFC Fight Night 39". thebiglead.com. Retrieved 2014-04-11.
- Staff (2014-04-11). "UFC Fight Night 39 bonuses: Clay Guida, Tatsuya Kawajiri nab 'FOTN' honors". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2014-04-11.
- Dave Walsh (April 15, 2014). "Roy Nelson Broke His Hand on Big Nog’s Head". mmanuts.com. Retrieved April 15, 2014.
- Staff (May 30, 2014). "Roy Nelson vs. Mark Hunt targeted for UFC Fight Night 52 in Japan". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved May 30, 2014.
- Shaun Al-Shatti (2015-01-06). "Alistair Overeem vs. Roy Nelson slated for UFC 185". mmafighting.com. Retrieved 2015-01-07.
- Damon Martin (2015-05-14). "Josh Barnett vs. Roy Nelson headlines UFC's return to Japan". foxsports.com. Retrieved 2015-05-14.
- "UFC Fight Night 82 adds Nelson-Rosholt". mmajunkie.com. 2015-12-13. Retrieved 2015-12-13.
- Ben Fowlkes (2016-02-06). "UFC Fight Night 82 results: Roy Nelson tops Jared Rosholt for first decision win since 2007". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2016-02-06.
- Adam Hill (2016-04-29). "Roy Nelson to fight Derrick Lewis on July 7 in Las Vegas". reviewjournal.com. Retrieved 2016-04-29.
- "Twitter reacts to Derrick Lewis' split-decision over Roy Nelson at UFC Fight Night 90". 2016-07-08. Retrieved 2016-07-08.
- Dann Stupp (2016-08-03). "Roy Nelson vs. Antonio Silva added to UFC Fight Night 95 in Brazil". mmajunkie. Retrieved 2016-08-03.
- Steven Marrocco (2016-09-25). "UFC Fight Night 95 results: Roy Nelson blasts 'Bigfoot' for second-round KO, then blasts ref McCarthy". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2016-09-25.
- Martin, Damon. "Roy Nelson KOs 'Bigfoot' Silva, pushes referee after stoppage". Retrieved 2016-09-25.
- Staff (2017-03-14). "Roy Nelson meets ex-Bellator champ Alexander Volkov at UFC on FOX 24 in Kansas City". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2017-03-14.
- Steven Marrocco (2017-04-15). "UFC on FOX 24 results: Alexander Volkov picks apart Roy Nelson for clean-sweep victory". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2017-04-15.
- "Roy Nelson Signs With Bellator MMA". Fightful.com. 2017-05-26. Retrieved 2017-05-30.
- "Roy Nelson signs with Bellator". Mmafighting.com. 2017-05-26. Retrieved 2017-05-26.
- "Roy Nelson Signs With Bellator MMA". Fightful.com. 2017-05-26. Retrieved 2017-05-30.
- Staff (June 24, 2017). "Benson Henderson's return, Roy Nelson's debut at Bellator 183; Bellator 181 gets new headliner". mmajunkie.com.