Dominick ‘The Devastator’ Reyes rise to stardom has been a fast one, the athletically-gifted UFC light heavyweight contender will receive a second opportunity at UFC gold in less than three years. Let us take a closer look into the life of Dominick Reyes and what put him in the position as the number one ranked light heavyweight fighter on the planet. Three years under the Ultimate Fighting Championship banner and six years a professional martial artist, the speed of Dominick
Three years under the Ultimate Fighting Championship banner and six years a professional martial artist, the speed of Dominick Reyes growth as a fighter is a scary one. Suffering one lone defeat, which was unanimously voted a mistake by MMA media and critics has put Reyes in a position to walk straight back into a title fight. Given the fact Jon Jones has relinquished his title a new challenger will arise and attempt to put a stop to the 12-1 “rookie”.
Age: 30, born December 26th, 1989
Height: 6ft 4″
Gym: Elevation Fight Team
Notable Gym Members: Curtis Blaydes, Alistair Overeem & Drew Dober
Current Streak: 1 loss
Wins by KO/TKO: 7
Wins by Submission: 2
Decision wins: 3
Born and raised in Hesperia, California of Mexican descent, mixed martial arts were not the first driving passion of Mr Reyes. He was a starting safety for the Stony Brook Seawolves from the years 2009-2012, taking the captains armband in his later years.
If you want the opinion of Dom’s coaches, Lyle Hemphill will remind you how imposing Dom was on the field: “He was violent, violent, violent tackler. He tried to kill people.” After landing a Division 1 program at Stony Brook, Dom’s accolades continued to blossom with a graded career average of 93%. The coaches at Stony Brook graded their player’s performances, and for Dom, he earned an A-minus.
“I’m not a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu or any of these mixed martial arts,” Dom told ESPN. “But I’m one-hundred percent a black belt in football.”
Dom’s coach Lyle Hemphill was utterly shocked that his former defensive line-backer was not offered a position in an NFL defence and swore he would have been a bright prospect.
At this point, Dom’s brother owns and runs an MMA gym. The perfect outlet for what seemed like a recovering addict, football had been Dom’s life, and without a ball, in his future, he had been lost. The mats of the MMA gym helped him salvage what he had lost.
“You step in the Octagon, and it’s like the ground is made of a whole new material you never felt in your life,” he says, “That canvas feels so good. It’s stretchy and soft and hard.” Sounding like a divorcee who had finally moved on with a new partner.
Martial arts had invigorated Dom’s athletic ability into a new world, one where helmets and balls were not necessary and becoming reliant on others was a thing of the past. To accomplish his dreams, all Dom had to do was convert his energy into the octagon, and that is what he did.
Destroying the opposition on the amateur MMA scene, it only took Dom five wins before his pro-debut was inevitable. His professional career did not change his attitude or the results, and the confident junior wrestler/footballer had now transitioned his skill set from the field into the octagon and was knocking men out left, right and center.
His most notable professional fight before the UFC was a knockout over Jordan Powell who was seemingly taunting Dom before an eventual head-kick knockout.
Much like his time spent in the amateurs, Dom steamrolled the opposition at pro-level going 6-0, all by way of knockout. Thee years spent as a professional fighter, and the UFC came calling.
And yes, the Story ends how it started – with Dominick Reyes dominating the opposition. Names like Jared Cannonier, Ovince Saint Preux, Volkan Oezdemir, and Chris Weidman have already suffered from the athletic explosion. A title shot was granted, and a title belt was stolen from Dominick Reyes, the judges handed Jon Jones as a decision win that did not reflect the fight that took place.
After making his UFC debut in the summer of 2017, Dom has successively made his way into the top-five rankings of the UFC light heavyweight division – an accomplishment alone. Now with the surprise light-heavyweight departure of Jon Jones, #1 ranked Dominick Reyes might be handed a fair result when challenging other opposition.
UFC Championship gold is around the corner for Dom, a Super Bowl ring may be out of the question, but the UFC odds look in his
Aged 30 and fighting in a heavyweight class is a scary thought for any upcoming title challenger, and Dom could still be knocking out challengers for the next decade ahead, potentially with the gold dripped around his waist.