The Tokyo, Japan 2020 Olympic games were fraught with intense competition, but the American freestyle and folk wrestling standout Gable Steveson stole the show along with gold in the eleventh hour. After capturing the Olympic gold medal, the 260-pound wrestler has become a magnet in the MMA world and has piqued the interest of the masses.
Joining rarified air with fellow Olympians like Daniel Cormier, Henry Cejudo, and Ronda Rousey, one must ask the question… how would Gable Steveson fare in the world of MMA?
In the finals for his gold medal, the heavyweight athlete trailed behind but found a way in the closing second of the wrestling match. Following the jaw-dropping buzzer-beater takedown, Steveson seems to have an interest in a possible MMA career. And to put a cherry on top, UFC color commentator and former double champion Daniel Cormier believes his combat trajectory could end up being similar to Brock Lesnar’s.
Either way, it seems as of this writing that the combat sports world is Gable Steveson’s oyster.
Cormier is of the impression that once Steveson builds upon his wrestling base in the WWE that he will be near unstoppable in the UFC. With such explosive single and double leg snatches, if Steveson polishes his stand-up game, then he will undoubtedly make a huge splash in the UFC or whatever promotion he lands in.
Despite having just competed, it’s clear the wrestling standout is ready to parlay his skills into another sport.
Obviously, with an Olympic background, Steveson would likely hold his own in MMA competition. But the discrepancy in striking will catch up to him–especially if he competes at heavyweight. Even so, the wrestling base itself will get him far, just look at Chael Sonnen and former middleweight champion Chris Weidman as examples. Realistically, with each passing month, should Steveson focus on the striking aspect of combat, then the world will have a very scary blue-chip prospect on their hands who not only is familiar with adversity but knows how to overcome it.
How do you think Gable would do in MMA? Comment below and feel free to check out The Scrap’s list of top UFC fighters to follow on Instagram!