Ivan Shtyrkov, an undefeated heavyweight in mixed martial arts who’s ranked by Tapology.com as the number one pound-for-pound fighter in Russia has just inked a four-fight contract with the UFC.
Joining the esteemed promotion’s powerhouse roster, the 30-year-old Russian ‘Ural Hulk’ is avowed for his versatility in fighting and his ability to score dramatic finishes.
Shtyrkov has never lost a match in his 15-fight career but has one three-round battle that ended in a draw. The Russian phenom’s most recent win was against a former UFC light heavyweight contender Thiago Silva.
‘Ural Hulk’ submitted the ex-UFC stunner with an armbar at the first round of their Russian Cagefighting Championship (RCC) 5 in Ekaterinburg last December.
Aside from his jaw-dropping win against the Brazilian mixed martial artist, one of the Russian heavyweight’s greatest wins happened when he entered the fighting cage opposite to Antonio ‘Bigfoot’ Silva in 2016.
This bout saw both men get blasted to the brink of unconsciousness numerous times in a span of 15 back-and-forth minutes.
After earning the huge win, the 30-year-old followed it up with an emphatic victory over three-fight UFC combatant Rodney Wallace in February 2017.
Announcing his entry in the Nevada-based promotion himself, Shtyrkov’s fighting club “Archangel Michael” wrote on Instagram:
“Today, the fighter of the club “Archangel Michael” Ivan Shtyrkov (15-0-1) has signed a four-fight deal with the UFC promotion. It is planned that he will fight in the division up to 93 kg. The date of the UFC debut and the name of the opponent are not yet known.”
“Recall that Ivan Shtyrkov had his previous fight at the RCC5 tournament in Yekaterinburg and ahead schedule won by submission over Tiago Silva. Now the Russian fighter is in the 17th line of the world ranking in the light heavyweight category.”
Shtyrkov is now joining the A-list of the UFC’s recently-signed fighters that are keeping fans on guard. One of the most watched-out prospects is Israel Adesanya, who’s now scheduled to an interim middleweight title shot vs Kelvin Gastelum after just being in five UFC fights.
Among the most phenomenal young combatants in the promotion is also Johnny Walker, a Brazilian prodigy who scored his first three UFC bouts to date via first-round knockouts.
Brazilian jiu-jitsu marvel Kron Gracie has also recently taken the fighting community by storm after acing his UFC debut in February against Alex Caceres with a first-round rear-naked choke.
Dropping the bomb on his Instagram himself, the Russian pound-for-pound king also wrote (translated):
“Many thanks to my family and friends, my team @archangl_michael and @rcc_academy, without you this moment in my life, it would not have happened! And I also thank @sayatus for the trust and work done!”
“It’s only the beginning! The contract with the UFC is signed, which means there are many interesting things ahead.”
Featured Image Credit: Instagram/Ivan Shtyrkov