Former UFC heavyweight champion Mark Coleman is making headlines with his reported return to combat sports. This time, Coleman is set to enter the boxing ring in a highly-anticipated match against former boxing champion Montell Griffin. The heavyweight bout has been scheduled for October 14, with Miami and Chicago being potential host cities.
The news was initially brought to light by MMA journalist Drake Riggs, who shared the story on his social media account. The announcement has stirred up a mixture of fascination and worry among fans and followers of both MMA and boxing.
It is undoubtedly intriguing to see Coleman at the age of 58, taking on a multi-time world champion in the boxing realm. However, concerns about the UFC Hall of Famer’s health and safety have been raised.
Fans wasted no time expressing their concerns and opinions.
Mark Coleman’s name resonates deeply within the MMA community, particularly in the heavyweight division. He etched his name in history by becoming the first UFC heavyweight champion in February 1997, solidifying his status as a legend in the sport.
At that time, the UFC was still shaping its divisions. The heavyweight category was among the first to be established. To determine the first UFC heavyweight titleholder, the Superfight Championship and the Tournament Championship were unified.
This led to a clash between Mark Coleman and Dan Severn. The monumental event took place at UFC 12: Judgement Day on February 7, 1997. Don Frye was initially slated to compete for the title but had to withdraw due to injuries, paving the way for Coleman to step in.
In a thrilling showdown, Coleman emerged victorious by securing a first-round submission and becoming the first UFC heavyweight champion. He held the title for an impressive 170 days before eventually losing it to Maurice Smith at UFC 14.
Following his UFC tenure, Coleman ventured into PRIDE FC. This is where he won the open-weight championship. In 2009, he made his return to the UFC before retiring in 2010 after a defeat to Randy Couture.
With a 16-10 record, Mark Coleman announced his retirement from the game. Throughout his career, Mark Coleman faced off against some of the sport’s greatest names, including Fedor Emelianenko, Mirko Cro-Cop, Randy Couture, Stephen Bonnar, and Mauricio Rua. His impact on the heavyweight division and his contributions to the sport as a whole is undeniable.