HYDEN BLOG: Stephan Bonnar Dies at 45

By: Frank Hyden, MMATorch Senior Columnist

There were no events this past week because of Christmas so I’ll touch
upon the shocking death of UFC Hall of Famer Stephan Bonnar at the way
too young age of 45 years old.

His fight with Forrest Griffin at The Ultimate Fighter Season 1 Finale
is legendary, and for good reason. Both men went out there and
delivered an extraordinary display of toughness, guts, and resiliency.
They were fighting for a UFC contract. Griffin won the fight by
decision but they both got contracts. That’s how great the fight was.

I had watched the UFC since its inception, though what originally drew
me in was the freak show aspect. That quickly changed with Ken
Shamrock and then on to Chuck Liddell. That’s when I heard about The
Ultimate Fighter reality show. I gave it a watch and it was okay. It
was heavy on the drama and the action was fairly good in some
episodes. It was entertaining enough that a few of my friends who
weren’t into MMA but liked action movies watched some episodes and
kind of liked it. That changed with The Ultimate Fighter Season 1

I gathered a bunch of friends and we all watched the event live. None
of us were prepared for the fight between Bonnar and Griffin. It was
an incredible showcase of heart and determination. Both fighters were
throwing and absorbing bombs that would have seemingly knocked them
out if they weren’t being pushed forward by something preternatural. I
couldn’t explain it then and I still can’t now. A reported three
million people watched the fight live and many more have seen it over
the years, as word of mouth spread.

It’s no hyperbole to say that this fight played a large role in saving
the UFC and propelling it forward to the heights it’s seen. You can’t
write the history of the UFC or just MMA in general without Stephan
Bonnar. He helped create an entire generation of fans, some of which
are in the UFC right now. Bonnar and Griffin are the Bird and Magic of

Bonnar’s career was marked by him fighting a lot of world champions.
Anderson Silva, Tito Ortiz, Rashad Evans, Lyoto Machida, Mark Coleman,
Jon Jones, and Griffin are on that list. Silva and Machida are the
only ones to finish him, the others on the list had to settle for
beating Bonnar by decision. No one could ever deny his toughness.
He’ll never be forgotten. Condolences to his family and friends.

My new fantasy book is now out. It’s called Kingdom of Zarias: A Fight For
. It’s the third book in my epic fantasy Kingdom of Zarias
series and follows the adventures of the Summers siblings as they
fight to defend the world from an evil villain named Galren. This book
also introduces lots of other characters as the scope of the world
grows. There’s lots of action, magic, and monsters in the Kingdom of
Zarias. It’s like a tabletop game in novel form. It’s on Amazon,
Barnes & Noble, and many other places. If you’re interested, I would
greatly appreciate it if you would check it out and support me. Also,
here’s the link to my new Compendium book about the Kingdom of Zarias
series- KoZ Compendium
Thank you very much, have a good day.

Comments and suggestions can be emailed to me at
hydenfrank@gmail.com and you can follow me on Twitter at @hydenfrank.
Thanks for reading and have a good day.

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