UFC lightweight Michael Chiesa’s was not only one of the most memorable contestants on the Ultimate Fighter 15 but also the last man standing, overcoming the death of his father to score successive victories with the added pressure of the season’s “real time” format. As it turns out, not only was Chiesa’s career in the Octagon spawned on the reality show but so was his trademark beard.
Chiesa offered up the origin of his fantastic facial hair in a conversation with MMAJunkie where he revealed he’d originally planned to keep it shorter before TUF producers intervened.
“The funny thing is that I always kept it a little long. But when I was on ‘The Ultimate Fighter,’ I asked them (about it). I asked them, ‘Hey, I really want to trim this thing down.’ And they’re like, ‘Nope, can’t do it. Consistency. When you trim it, we can’t go back and use old footage.’ So I got stuck with growing this big huge beard,” laughed Chiesa. “The fans fell in love with it, and I’ve become accustomed to it. So now it’s just kind of a part of who I am.”
“Anytime I shave it off, I feel like I look like a pinhead,” he added. “I need a chin job. I need to get a new chin or something bigger. So I’ll probably just trim it down a bit.”
The 9-0 Chiesa will see if his other “beard” holds up later tonight at UFC on FOX 8 in a match-up with Jorge Masvidal. Both of Chiesa’s victories in the UFC have come by way of submission.
Front-Page Photo Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports