Former MMA fighter Kevin Randleman passes away

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

Kevin Randleman, a former UFC heavyweight champion, has passed away. He was 44-years-old.

His death was confirmed by his sister. He was reportedly in a San Diego hospital, where he was suffering from pneumonia, then heart failure led to his death.

Death Candle
Death Candle (Photo by Pixabay)

He had been living in Las Vegas, according to reports.

“RIP Kevin Randleman… Your smile, positive attitude & “Warrior Spirit” lit up every room & cage you walked into… TY for your friendship,” UFC announcer Bruce Buffer said on Twitter.

He was 17-16 in his career and won the heavyweight championship at UFC 23: Ultimate Japan 2 in 1999. He defeated Pete Williams in a unanimous decision to win the strap.

Besides fighting in the UFC, he also fought in PRIDE, Sengoku and Strikeforce. As a fighter, he had dyed blonde hair, which he was known for.

Randleman fought in the Heavyweight and Light Heavyweight divisions. In addition, he was a member of Xtreme Couture and Team Hammer House.

He had a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu and fought in the MMA from 1996 through 2011. He lost the last four fights of his career.

His last win came in a unanimous decision over Ryo Kawamura at World Victory Road Presents: Sengoku 2 on May 18, 2008 in Tokyo, Japan.

Then, in June 2009, he lost to Mike Whitehead in a unanimous decision at Strikeforce: Lawler vs. Shields in St. Louis, Mo. A few months later, in Nov., he lost to Stanislav Nedkov in a split decision to drop his mark to 17-14 in Japan at World Victory Road Presents: Sengoku 11.

In his final two fights, he was submitted. He was first submitted by Roger Gracie at Strikeforce: Heavy Artillery in May 2010 by a rear-naked choke in the second round in St. Louis, Mo. His final fight came in May 2011 in Khabarovsk, Russia when he was submitted in the first round with an armor to Baga Agaev at Pro FC: Randleman vs. Agaev.

Randleman debuted in the UFC in the “Road to the Heavyweight title” tournament. He first defeated Maurice Smith, before losing in the finals at UFC 20 to Bas Rutten.

“We heard its confirmed, Kevin Randleman passed away,” Bas Rutten wrote on Twitter. “Condolences to Elizabeth and their kids, RIP my friend.”

He went 3-11 in the final 14 fights of his career. Besides the Kawamura win, he also defeated Faith Kocamis by a unanimous decision in Oct. 2005 at Bushido Europe: Rotterdam Rumble in the Netherlands.

He also knocked out Mirko Filipović at PRIDE Total Elimination 2004 in Saitama, Japan. This happened in the 2004 Heavyweight GP Opening Round. It won him the upset of the Year, as well as the Knockout of the Year.

He also leaves behind a wife and three children.

“I’m so sorry to hear about the passing of the legend Kevin Randleman. RIP Kevin “The Monster” Randleman,” UFC President Dana White said on Twitter.

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