UFC Heavyweight Stefan Struve, Who Knocked out Stipe Miocic, Announces Retirement

Published 02/15/2021, 11:33 AM EST
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – OCTOBER 24: (R-L) Stefan Struve of The Netherlands kicks Tai Tuivasa of Australia in their heavyweight bout during the UFC 254 event on October 24, 2020 on UFC Fight Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)


Stefan Struve is one of the mainstays of the UFC heavyweight division. The Dutch fighter debuted in 2009 with a loss to Junior Dos Santos. However, he rebounded and has since been perenially ranked, even going on a four-fight win streak. That win streak was highlighted by him knocking out current UFC Heavyweight Champion Stipe Miocic in 2012.

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Despite being perenially ranked, Struve never fought for the title. Everyone thought his UFC journey came to an end when he announced his first retirement in 2019. He broke a three-fight losing skid by beating Marcus ‘Rogero’ Lima. However, he returned and fought Ben Rothwell, in a fight which was marred by low kicks.

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Struve lost at UFC 254 to Tai Tuivasa and now has announced retirement citing health issues.

It seems the Tuivasa fight was the nail in the coffin, as a blow to his right ear worsened some of the vertigo and tinnitus symptoms that he was facing. Hopefully, Struve recovers from these issues and can live a happy post-fight life. He had a record of 33-13 in his career, going 13-11 in the UFC.

Stefan Struve: A UFC veteran steps away

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While this is Struve’s second retirement, this does seem final. He wanted to go out on top, which is why he retired after his win in 2019. However, most fighters have a hard time kicking the fight bug and that is what happened with Struve. The Rothwell fight was actually pretty good, but the accidental illegal shots made it very hard for Struve to fight back.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – OCTOBER 23: Stefan Struve of the Netherlands poses on the scale during the UFC 254 weigh-in on October 23, 2020 on UFC Fight Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)

In his prime, Struve was close to cracking the top-three in the rankings and getting a title fight. However, he would always be stopped at a pivotal point by someone or the other. Then came a time where his skill-set just wasn’t enough to get it done consistently at the elite level in the UFC.

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Everyone will be rooting for Struve in all his post-UFC endeavors. He is a true Heavyweight icon as having 24 fights in the UFC against almost all ranked opponents is no easy feat. He is the tallest fighter in UFC history at 7 feet tall.

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Ishaan Bhattacharya

1510 articles

Ishaan Bhattacharya is an NBA, NCAA Basketball, and Combat Sports writer at EssentiallySports. Currently, Ishaan is pursuing a Post Graduate Degree in Journalism from Xavier's Institute of Communication. Previously, Ishaan has written for The Indian Express, The Quint, Sportskeeda, and WrestleClub.

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