MMA Legend Bas Rutten to Enter UFC Hall of Fame
By FCF Staff
One of MMA’s most popular and celebrated fighters, Bas Rutten, will be inducted into the UFC’s Hall of Fame this July. The promotion has announced that “El Guapo” will be inducted into the Pioneer Era category, since Rutten turned professional before November, 2000.
The former UFC heavyweight champ was quoted saying in the official announcement:
“I never expected to be inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame,” Rutten said. “I won the UFC heavyweight title, but injuries cut my UFC run short. Most of my big wins were in Japan. I saw the new UFC Hall of Fame format and I thought maybe I could get in eventually as a Contributor because of my years of commentating. But I’m so honored that the UFC recognized what I did as a fighter.”
The 50 year-old Rutten went 28-4 during his career, and fought for much of it with Japan’s storied Pancrase organization.
The Dutch fighter joined the UFC in January, 1999, and after stopping Tsuyoshi Kosaka, he earned a split decision win over Kevin Randleman that May to become heavyweight champ.
Rutten didn’t fight again until 2006, however, when he TKO’d Ruben Villareal under the WFA banner.