Joe Pyfer Narrates How Dana White Saved Him From Homelessness in Harrowing Story

Published 02/09/2024, 4:20 AM EST

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Did you know that Joe Pyfer is a fighter whose life was saved by none other than UFC head honcho, Dana White? Pyfer competed in Dana White’s contender series twice in his career. First, in 2020, when he lost his bout after being injured during the match, and then again, in 2022. However, this time around, Pyfer would emerge as the winner but win so much more than just a contract with the UFC.

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Now, Pyfer is looking at headlining at the Fight Night event against perhaps his biggest opponent to date, Jack Hermansson. But coming so far wasn’t easy for the fighter who faced homelessness only to be saved by Dana White who helped him get “situated” in a home of his own as fast as humanly possible. Here’s the story of Joe Pyfer.

Joe Pyfer won over Dana White with one fight

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In July 2022, Joe Pyfer locked horns with Ozzy Diaz at Dana White’s Contender Series and managed to secure a brilliant knockout win. As soon as he had won, he walked to the side of the cage that faced Dana White and began talking to the UFC CEO. This act of excitement only helped White’s confidence in the fighter.

White was so impressed, that he would later go on to say that if anyone ever wanted to be in the UFC, they should act like Joe Pyfer. Pyfer was about to be evicted from his then stay and he communicated his issues with being homeless to the UFC CEO who later opened up about the situation. “I do a lot of things for a lot of people that I don’t necessarily talk about,” he said to reporters. “Joe Pyfer, when I left the press conference that night, told me that he was about to be homeless. So — that ain’t gonna happen.”

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And it meant the whole world to Pyfer. He quickly utilized the extra help from White to move out of his previous establishment and find a new place to stay in a matter of days. The fighter told the UFC how his life changed “substantially” after that since White gave him more money on top of his win bonus.

“And uh without that I don’t think I would have had the trajectory that I’m on.” Said Pyfer. Clearly, that one knockout win secured a bright future for Pyfer who has developed a lot since he first fought for contender series in 2020. But when did Pyfer start learning MMA?

Pyfer’s Real Trajectory in MMA

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Joe Pyfer is said to have started his MMA journey back in high school where he competed for the wrestling team effectively using his BJJ and Judo skills. Fighting in Philadelphia as a professional fighter, Pyfer achieved a record of 7-1 at middleweight before he first went into Dana White’s Contender Series which led him to a loss.

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Now, after winning his fight in 2022, Pyfer has already become a name on the rise winning two back-to-back fights at two separate events. First, he knocked out Gerald Meerschaert in the very first round at UFC 287 and then, he would go on to submit Abdul Razak Alhassan at UFC Fight Night:  Dawson vs. Green.

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Clearly, White’s investment wasn’t in vain for a fighter who’s growing as quickly as Pyfer. The only question is, is he going to keep on winning? Will his next opponent hand him a loss? We’ll find out soon.

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Written by:

Prit Chauhan

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One take at a time

I'm Prit Chauhan, and I'm a UFC writer at EssentiallySports. I've been in the writing business for three years, covering areas like mass media marketing, and even tried my hand at fiction. My experience includes research work at the University of California, Berkeley, which helps me spin fact-based stories about the world of Mixed Martial Arts effortlessly.
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Edited by:

Joyita Das

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