The Hit List: Olympic Medalists Who Have Competed in MMA

By: J.R. Ventura
Mar 29, 2018

Mixed martial arts has long been a popular avenue for Olympic medalist to continue their competitive careers, with wrestlers, boxers and judo players all making the transition over the last 25 years.

Ronda Rousey serves as one of the best-known examples, as she captured bronze in judo at the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing before turning her attention to MMA. She won her first 12 fights, all of them finishes, and laid claim to titles in Strikeforce and the Ultimate Fighting Championship. In the process, Rousey became one of the sport’s most bankable stars and a trailblazer for women in what had once been a male-dominated pursuit.

Though she currently calls World Wrestling Entertainment home, Rousey belongs to a long list of Olympic medalists who have crossed over to MMA:

Ronda Rousey

MMA Record: 12-2
Olympic Sport: Judo
Olympic Year(s): 2008
Medal(s): Bronze

***


Kevin Jackson

MMA Record: 4-2
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 1992
Medal(s): Gold

***


Henry Cejudo

MMA Record: 12-2
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 2008
Medal(s): Gold

***


Mark Schultz

MMA Record: 1-1
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 1984
Medal(s): Gold

***


Satoshi Ishii

MMA Record: 16-8
Olympic Sport: Judo
Olympic Year(s): 2008
Medal(s): Gold

***


Sara McMann

MMA Record: 11-5
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 2004
Medal(s): Silver

***


Yoel Romero

MMA Record: 13-2
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 2000
Medal(s): Silver

***


Matt Lindland

MMA Record: 22-9
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 2000
Medal(s): Silver

***


Vladimer Tchanturia

MMA Record: 0-1
Olympic Sport: Boxing
Olympic Year(s): 2000
Medal(s): Bronze

***


Randi Miller

MMA Record: 1-0
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 2008
Medal(s): Bronze

***


Townsend Saunders

MMA Record: 0-2
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 1996
Medal(s): Silver

***


David Khakhaleishvili

MMA Record: 1-2
Olympic Sport: Judo
Olympic Year(s): 1992
Medal(s): Gold

***


Hidehiko Yoshida

MMA Record: 9-8-1
Olympic Sport: Judo
Olympic Year(s): 1992
Medal(s): Gold

***


Pawel Nastula

MMA Record: 5-6
Olympic Sport: Judo
Olympic Year(s): 1996
Medal(s): Gold

***


Alexis Vila

MMA Record: 15-7
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 1996
Medal(s): Bronze

***


Kenny Monday

MMA Record: 1-0
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 1988 / 1992
Medal(s): Gold / Silver

***


Naoya Ogawa

MMA Record: 7-2
Olympic Sport: Judo
Olympic Year(s): 1992
Medal(s): Silver

***


Rulon Gardner

MMA Record: 1-0
Olympic Sport: Greco-Roman Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 2000 / 2004
Medal(s): Gold / Bronze

***


Alexander Karelin

MMA Record: 1-0
Olympic Sport: Greco-Roman Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 1988 / 1992 / 1996 / 2000
Medal(s): Gold / Gold / Gold / Silver

***


Ben Spijkers

MMA Record: 0-2
Olympic Sport: Judo
Olympic Year(s): 1988
Medal(s): Bronze

***


Eldari Kurtanidze

MMA Record: 0-1
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 1996 / 2000
Medal(s): Bronze / Bronze

***


Damian Janikowski

MMA Record: 2-0
Olympic Sport: Greco-Roman Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 2012
Medal(s): Bronze

***


Matt Ghaffari

MMA Record: 0-1
Olympic Sport: Greco-Roman Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 1996
Medal(s): Silver

***


Dennis Hall

MMA Record: 0-1
Olympic Sport: Greco-Roman Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 1996
Medal(s): Silver

***


Min Soo Kim

MMA Record: 3-7
Olympic Sport: Judo
Olympic Year(s): 1996
Medal(s): Silver

***


Aleksei Medvedev

MMA Record: 0-0-1
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 1996
Medal(s): Silver

***


Bu Kyung Jung

MMA Record: 0-4
Olympic Sport: Judo
Olympic Year(s): 2000
Medal(s): Silver

***


Katsuhiko Nagata

MMA Record: 6-7-3
Olympic Sport: Greco-Roman Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 2000
Medal(s): Silver

***


Stephen Abas

MMA Record: 3-0
Olympic Sport: Freestyle Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 2004
Medal(s): Silver

***


Hiroshi Izumi

MMA Record: 4-2
Olympic Sport: Judo
Olympic Year(s): 2004
Medal(s): Silver

***


Ray Mercer

MMA Record: 1-0
Olympic Sport: Boxing
Olympic Year(s): 1988
Medal(s): Gold

***


Makoto Takimoto

MMA Record: 6-5
Olympic Sport: Judo
Olympic Year(s): 2000
Medal(s): Gold

***


Istvan Majoros

MMA Record: 0-1
Olympic Sport: Greco-Roman Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 2004
Medal(s): Gold

***


Karam Ibrahim

MMA Record: 0-1
Olympic Sport: Greco-Roman Wrestling
Olympic Year(s): 2004
Medal(s): Gold

***


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