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Video: Jeff Monson stretchered out of arena after illegal soccer kick ends fight in Russia

Jeff Monson’s first MMA fight since 2017 ended in disaster after the 51-year-old journeyman was illegally kicked in the neck on the ground.


It has not been a good weekend for aged mixed martial artists still trying to make a few bucks.

Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Heavyweight and human fire hydrant, Jeff Monson, was back in action on Saturday night (Oct. 29, 2022) at a Draka Boxing/MMA event in Russia. The 51-year-old anarcho-communist was facing Alexandr Ilyasov in the main event of the night, but things went sideways in the second round after “The Snowman” dived for Ilyasov’s leg, only to get illegally soccer kicked in the neck shortly after.

The kick didn’t look too bad and Ilyasov immediately apologized profusely for the move, but the damage had been done. Monson was unable to get back up, and medics were finally brought in to help him to his corner. The Heavyweight would end up being stretchered out of the cage, and the fight declared a, “No Contest.”

You can watch the incident below care of Twitter user Matysek.

The full fight and event is available here:

Here’s hoping Monson wasn’t seriously hurt by the kick to the neck and recovers fully.

Jeff Monson is a familiar name to old-school MMA fans. He’s been competing in the sport professionally since 1997 and made a name for himself as an ADCC world champion. He had two short stints in UFC: in 2000, he fought (and lost to) Chuck Liddell in Japan. And in 2006, he had a successful three-fight win streak in UFC’s Heavyweight division that ended with a loss to then-champion, Tim Sylvia.

Monson would move on to PRIDE and then a variety of other international promotions. Over his career, he’s also fought for Strikeforce, DREAM, Sengoku and Cage Warriors. Notable opponents include Ricco Rodriguez, Forrest Griffin, Josh Barnett, Mark Kerr, Roy Nelson, Daniel Cormier and Fedor Emelianenko, among others.

In 2011, Monson linked up with M-1 Global and begin fighting regularly in Russia. After dozens of fights in the country, Monson decided to give up his United States citizenship to become fully Russian. After a four-year break in combat sports competition, “The Snowman” returned to action in 2021 to compete in Russian sideshow boxing events. He’s winless (0-2) in those, with his last fight in February being a bareknuckle decision loss to Aleksander Emelianenko.

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