Report: Jeff Monson discussing possible return to UFC

Jeff Monson earned a unanimous decision victory over former UFC heavyweight champion Ricco Rodriguez during this past Saturday’s Mixed Fighting Alliance event in Miami at the American Airlines Arena and in doing so, potentially moved one step closer to a UFC return.

The possibility of Monson coming back to compete in the Octagon was first reported by Ryan Hockensmith during last week’s edition of ESPN.com’s “MMA Live.”

Hockensmith reported that Monson is expected to fight once more in Japan for the Sengoku promotion but that he has indicated he’s been involved in contract talks with the UFC.

“If Monson wins, he’ll fight once more in Sengoku in Japan,” Hockensmith said. “Then he expects to return to the UFC. He’s had a lot of conversations with them.”

According to Hockensmith, the talks between the UFC and the two-time Abu Dhabi champion have progressed to a point that even a potential opponent has been discussed, with a future bout between Monson and Cheick Kongo discussed as a possibility.

Monson, a jiu-jitsu black belt, last competed for the UFC in November of 2006 at UFC 65 where he challenged then-champion Tim Sylvia for the UFC heavyweight title. In that fight, Monson lost a five round unanimous decision and was released per his own request soon after the fight.

Since leaving the UFC, Monson has competed seven times in promotions such as PRIDE and Art of War in addition to the aforementioned Sengoku. During that span he has gone 5-2 with notable wins over Rodriguez, Kazuyuki Fajita, Mark Kerr, and Jimmy Ambriz and losses to Josh Barnett and Pedro Rizzo.

20 COMMENTS
  • Greg Jarvis says:

    sick BJJ and ground game but unfortunately in my opinion not skilled enough for the heavyweight division in the UFC . If he can’t beat Rizzo and Barnett how’s he gonna compete with Mir , Nog’s, Lesnar , etc… In my opinion Chieck Kongo’s standup is worldclass and if this fight does happen he will KO Monson for sure! Anyway just my opinion Much RESPECT Monson welcome back !

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  • KMac says:

    Agreed…his groud is incredible, his stand-up is weak, but more importantly to Dana and crew, his fights are boring…. thats why I find this surprising.

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  • KMac says:

    * groud = ground

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  • saerbarnet says:

    Greg: The problem with Cheick Kongo is that his ground game is abysmal.. If Monson would get him down he could easily take care of Kongo on the ground.

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  • ctateo says:

    Cannot say that the Barnett loss is reason to keep him out of the UFC. barnett is top of the food chain, easily top 5 IMO. Against Kongo, it’ll be sub for Monson, or KO for Kongo, bot things that the fans want to see.

    I’d rather see monson against one of the up and coming HW’s, preferably one of the guys with a wrestling background.

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  • Andrej says:

    Shane Carwin or Cain Velazquez who be sweat aganist Jeff Monson.

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  • mburtoni says:

    Would be good to have the Snowman back in the UFC. I would also agree that a loss to Barnett is no reason to keep him out of the UFC. IMO, Barnett is the #3 HW in the world, behind Fedor & Big Nog. I would personally rather see Fedor fight Barnett than Arlovski.

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  • Kung Foo says:

    Word is Jeff has been improving his standup.Dont even have to mention his ground game, everyone knows about that, but I havent seen him fight in some time, but if he can shore up that one weakness, he could pull an Arloksi and become a major terror again.

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  • Rich S. says:

    Monson’s just so damn small..

    i don’t see how he could get Kongo down..

    and if he ever met Lesnar it’d be the most unfair bout i’ve ever seen by far..

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  • ACK! says:

    I support this, why not? It’d make for a good story and he’d test a lot of heavyweights on the ground… At worst, he’s a highly skilled gatekeeper, of which there are very few in the UFC’s heavyweight division (Herring is the only guy I can think of, off-hand, who would qualify at this point).

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  • Evadmils says:

    It’s a shame he won’t let go of some of the rediculous muscle…Anyone know what he usually weighs in at?

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  • Evadmils says:

    Seems like 205 would be more fitting

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  • Ron Burgundy says:

    Hey Rich S. – Monson is SHORT but not small. He’s only 5’9” but he weighs in usually around 230-240 because he is nearly pure muscle. He is definitely one of the more powerful heavyweights out there now. It wouldn’t take a whole lot for Monson to get Kongo down really. A single leg, double leg, maybe even just a body lock and trip, then it’s good night Kongo by way of arm triangle. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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  • steve says:

    @Evadmils: i think he usually weighs in at like 245, pretty heavy dude.

    i was just think about this yesterday. at this point it definately couldnt hurt to have him in the UFC’s shallow HW division. hes getting older, but hasnt shown it at all. i definately wouldnt object to UFC also signing Ricco, at least for the rubber match between the two, it would also have a good story behind it. Ricco has fought 9 times in 2008 losing only to Monson, Travis Wiuff & Antonio Silva. also hes still at an age where he could have a major comeback. i think the addition of either Snowman or Ricco would be an addition to the UFC HW division.

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  • steve says:

    *a great addition

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  • Bullylover says:

    Monson is definatly one of the best grapplers of the HW division, however if his stand up is still that of the Sylvia fight he will get slept by Kongo.As far as Ricco Rodriguez goes he doesn’t have any business in the octagon I mean did you see the “bigfoot” Silva fight, he got pretty much dominated even though it was a boring fight. This is all my opinion though. I’d love to see Monson drop down to 205 & fight Vinny or even see Paulofilho go up to 205 & fight Minson those would be some nice fights in my eyes.

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  • Munchy says:

    Bring back the Snowman, I would love to see it, lets not forget the Snowman was able to take Timmy down, so I think he can take down Kongo.

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  • Chris says:

    He is a dirty commie and a boring fighter. I hope the UFC dont make that mistake again. I could really care less to see that steroid freak fight again. He probably would not even be able to pass the pre-fight drug test. The UFC needs new HW but I hope they are not that desperate.

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  • Dennis says:

    He is definately not a “commie” for he resides in the states. Besides he needs to get back to the UFC and show that he can and will be HW champion. As for the steroids he has to be tested at other fights as well, do your research before you go bashing.

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  • Ace says:

    Lesner vs. monson. i would pay to see that…. Lesner is an animal, but if monson could get him to the ground, anything is possible really

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