Former UFC heavyweight champion Kevin Randleman died today. He was 44 years-old.
The death was reported by Jeremy Botter on Twitter.
Randleman is remembered by many fight fans for his aggressive, entertaining style and his wrestling, which served him well throughout his career.
UFC Legend, Kevin Randleman Passes Away At Age 44. Can't believe my friend passed away. That's 2 in 2 months WoW pic.twitter.com/1lmKyWcMEi
— Gary Goodridge (@garyhgoodridge) February 12, 2016
After losing to Bas Rutten for the vacant UFC belt in May of 1999, Randleman won the belt that November against Petey Williams and defended against Pedro Rizzo in June of 2000, before losing it five months later to Randy Couture.
After the UFC, Randleman carved out careers in PRIDE, Strikeforce and even All-Japan Pro as a professional wrestler.
I’m so sorry to hear about the passing of the legend Kevin Randleman. RIP Kevin “The Monster" Randleman pic.twitter.com/MTC4nFAF29
— danawhite (@danawhite) February 12, 2016
In PRIDE, his 2004 upset win over Mirko Filipovic shocked the MMA world. His suplex of Fedor Emelianko, which dumped the legend violently on his head, is still etched in the minds of many fight fans.
Randleman was known for speaking his mind, as he did here in a 2011 interview with MMA Inside the Cage.
He is expected to be a shoo-in candidate for the UFC Hall-of-Fame.
Randleman is survived by his wife Elizabeth and three children.
A GoFundMe account has been set up by friends to help with expenses. The target is $50,000 USD.
We heard its confirmed, Kevin Randleman passed away. This is the worst news. Condolences to Elizabeth and their kids, RIP my friend
— Bas Rutten (@BasRuttenMMA) February 12, 2016
I was on the line with Mark Hunt when the news broke of Kevin Randleman's passing. Here was his reaction. pic.twitter.com/xjEAzCK5PU
— Justin Faux (@justinfauxmma) February 12, 2016
Kevin Randleman picked me up & put me on his shoulder after my first fight. Made me feel like a hero. RIP to a Monster w/ a heart of gold.
— Julie Kedzie (@julesk_fighter) February 12, 2016
RIP Kevin Randleman pic.twitter.com/Pa5asqfeH1
— Chris Reis (@CJReis7) February 12, 2016
— Jordan Iverson (@JordanIverson_) February 12, 2016
RIP Kevin Randleman. 44 is way too young to go. My thoughts go out to his family. Thanks for the memories Monster. pic.twitter.com/NQqU9FrXHi
— Jordan McCreery (@MMAAdvertising) February 12, 2016
RIP @themonstah_ Kevin Randleman. Glad I got to meet him. A great guy that was all about his family. Condolences
— Cesar Gracie (@CesarGracieBJJ) February 12, 2016
Holy. I remember Kevin Randleman losing his mind on me because I called him Sir. He didn't appreciate it for some reason. RIP Mr Randleman
— Ben Ortmanns (@BigBenIsAngry) February 12, 2016