Mariusz Pudzianowski’s five most exciting wins in MMA ahead of KSW 70

Since swapping the strongman scene for the octagon, Mariusz Pudzianowski has been involved in a host of memorable fights. Here, we take a look at the top five.

By the age of 32, Mariusz Pudzianowski had already won five World Strongest Man titles, six European Strongest Man titles, and enjoyed 16 Strongman Super Series event wins. 

Having claimed every accolade in the sport multiple times over, the Polish Pudzilla set his sights on a new avenue - mixed martial arts.

While it's fair to say that Pudzianowski is not the most technical fighter you're ever likely to come across, he rarely fails to disappoint when it comes to leaving fans on the edge of their seats.

This weekend, the Polish sporting legend returns to the cage as he tops the bill at KSW 70 in a much-anticipated encounter with Michal Materla.

The fellow Pole has been fighting professionally for almost two decades, and has enjoyed 31 wins from 39 bouts.

Ahead of the big fight, Planet Sport looks back at five of Pudzianowski's most exciting victories.

5 - Rolles Gracie Jr

Rolles Gracie Jr comes from a proud fighting family, but despite his experience in the UFC and WSOF, the Brazilian-American fighter came up short when facing Pudzianowski back in 2015.

The Polish fighter ended proceedings after just 27 seconds, making this his second-fastest knockout.  

An overhand right, followed by the Pole's trademark ground-and-pound put an early end to the contest.

4 - Bombardier

KSW 64 witnessed one of the 'biggest' bouts in the organisation's history as 587 pounds of humanity entered the octagon.

In one corner stood the home favourite, Pudzianowski. In the other, was the 327-pound Senegalese wrestling sensation known as Bombardier.

In the end, the fight failed to meet expectations as Pudzian knocked his opponent out in 18 seconds. Still, seeing those giants in the cage at the same time was a sight to behold. Plus, the Pole deserves credit for his emphatic finish.

3 - Bob Sapp

In one of the biggest freak show fights in MMA history, Pudzianowski took on former American football player, pro-wrestler, actor, kickboxer and mixed martial artist, Bob Sapp.

Following two disappointing performances against James Thompson, KSW needed to restore Pudzianowski's killer image. There was no better way of doing that than putting him in the ring with another man of limited skill.

The plan worked to perfection as Pudzian went straight after Sapp, took him down into the ropes and finished him off with a series of strikes.

Was it a great technical bout? No. Was the fight predictable? Yes. But was it all exciting? Just watch it back and listen to those fans.

2 - Butterbean

With over 100 fights in boxing, MMA and kickboxing under his belt, Eric 'Butterbean' Esch is no joke.

At 43 years old though, the American was clearly past his prime when he took on Pudzianowski back in 2010.

In one of the most surreal MMA encounters you're ever likely to see, Pudzianowski tasted a couple of nasty jabs before replying with a takedown and a ground-and-pound finish.

The American, who teased the Pole before the fight about his punches, said in the aftermath: "I never said he fought like a girl. I said he hit like a girl. His takedown was good. I can't complain. He won."

1 - Marcin Najman

This is list is certainly not for the MMA purists, and this fight is no exception.

However, you need to put yourself in the shoes of the casual Polish viewer to understand why this is number one.

Pudzianowski, as Poland's greatest sporting hero at the time, was making his debut against boxer Marcin Najman. While internationally people may have laughed, in Poland this was the Super Bowl of domestic fights.

Considering both men never had an MMA fight before, no one knew what to expect. Ultimately, what we got was a first-round pummelling, as Pudzian chased his opponent with kicks before pounding his way to the finish.

The most technical part of it all, was the referee's hold on Pudzian following the finale. He would've probably put on a better show than poor old Najman.

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