Recent Olympic gold medal victor, Gable Stevenson has teased a potential transition to professional mixed martial arts following his wrestling exploits in Japan at this year’s summer Olympic games — and has received some support from fellow wrestling standout and former ONE Championship and Bellator welterweight champion and former UFC contender, Ben Askren.
The 21-year-old Steveson scooped Olympic gold in the men’s heavyweight finale against three-time and reigning world champion, Georgia’s, Geno Petriashvili. Earlier in the games, Steveson defeated defending Olympic champion, the decorated Turkey native, Taha Akgul. With his 10-8 victory over Petriashvili to win gold, Steveson improved his record to 35-6.
Posting a rather cryptic tweet last night, Steveson took to his official Twitter account where he posted a waving hand emoji, as well as tagging UFC president, Dana White — amid recent speculation and calls for him to make a move to professional mixed martial arts.
Following his gold medal-winning performance, Steveson received support from the abovementioned, Askren — who claimed that if the Indiana native received training for a period of 18-months in mixed martial arts, nobody would be able to defeat him.
“Give @GableSteveson 18 months training MMA and tell me who on earth is beating him?” Askren tweeted. “Freaking NO ONE.“
Of note, Olympians who have transitioned to professional mixed martial arts that have enjoyed tremendous success include former two-weight champions, Daniel Cormier and Henry Cejudo, as well as middleweight title challenger, Yoel Romero, former Pride FC two-weight champion and Grand Prix winner, Dan Henderson, as well as two-time Olympic gold medalist, PFL standout, Kayla Harrison, former UFC champions, Randy Couture and Mark Coleman, as well as bronze medalist, inaugural UFC bantamweight titleholder, Ronda Rousey.
Still just 21 years of age, Steveson has enjoyed a splendid, gold-laden career as an amateur wrestler, which includes victories in two Big Ten Championships, an NCAA Division I championship win this year, to go with his Pan American championship win in Guatemala this year — and his recent gold medal success in Tokyo, Japan.
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