Jeff, “the Snowman” Monson (born January 18, 1971) is an American mixed martial artist from Olympia, Washington. He is a 2 time winner of the ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championship, and a NOGI Brazilian Jiu Jitsu World Champion. He is currently affiliated with American Top Team which is based in Coconut Creek, Florida.
Monson was a Division I wrestler at Oregon State University and at the University of Illinois, and was a Pac-10 champion. He also competed at senior level at USA Wrestling events for a number of years.
Monson is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt and a two-time Abu Dhabi Combat Club Submission Wrestling World Champion. He is a mixed martial arts fighter and has had three professional boxing bouts. His professional boxing record is two wins and one draw.
Monson is considered to be one of the world’s top submission grapplers. He is a multiple event winner at NAGA, Grapplers Quest and FILA, among other submission tournaments. He is nicknamed “The Snowman” for his performance at the 1999 Abu Dhabi Combat Club Submission Wrestling World Championship. The Brazilian fighters at the tournament gave him the nickname because he came in as an unknown, but beat four Brazilians in a row to win the 88-98 kilogram weight class. As he went along in the tournament and continued to beat his opponents, they said he was like a snowball (white, compact, rolling and getting bigger and stronger as the tournament went on).
Monson is known for his anarchist views and affiliations. In an interview, he explained, “I am an anarchist, someone who would like to do away with all class hierarchy in society and the institutions that promote this inequality.”He correspondingly receives sponsorship from AK Press and has several anarchist symbols tattooed on his body. In solidarity, Monson is a member of the Industrial Workers of the World (Wobblies).
Monson has a Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s Degree in psychology. For a few years he worked as a mental health professional, both in a crisis evaluation role as well as a child/family counselor. He has had such major success in Abu Dhabi and other MMA shows that he left the mental health profession to devote himself full time to mixed martial arts.
Mixed martial arts career
After 14 straight victories Monson returned to the UFC. At UFC 57 Monson submitted Branden Lee Hinkle by North South Choke in the first round. At UFC 59 Monson fought his long time hated rival ADCC veteran and Jujutsu black belt Marcio Cruz, Monson won by decision after 3 rounds. At UFC 61 Monson fought BJJ black belt Anthony Perosh, Monson won by TKO in the first round.
On November 18, 2006 at UFC 65, Monson fought Tim Sylvia for the UFC heavyweight championship. Monson lost a five round decision and would later ask to be relinquished from his UFC contract in hopes of facing PRIDE heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko at a BodogFIGHT scheduled for March 2007. However, negotiations fell through and the match never happened.
At PRIDE 34, on April 8, 2007, Monson defeated Kazuyuki Fujita by rear naked choke at 6:37 of the opening round.
His next fight was scheduled to be against Chris Guillen on August 17, 2007 for the Global Fighting Championships’ heavyweight title, but the event was canceled after four of the eight scheduled bouts were removed from the card. He lost the fight against Pedro Rizzo at Art of War 3 which was held on September 1, 2007. During the bout, Monson displayed a much improved level of striking, and kept the fight standing virtually the entire time.
On September 7, 2007, Monson won a total of two matches in the FILA World Championship in Turkey, defeating France’s Zoro Piere and Great Britain’s Tom Blackledge with submissions. Monson was awarded the 275-pound gold medal when his final opponent Ramon Diaz suffered an injury and was forced to bow out.
Jeff Monson defeated Ricco Rodriguez in the main event of Mixed Fighting Alliance “There Will Be Blood” event on December 13, 2008. He avenged a loss to Rodriguez from almost 7 years prior.
On March 21, 2009, Jeff won a controversial decision against “Big Country” Roy Nelson on Roy Jones Jr.’s hybrid boxing/MMA card “March Badness”. He then beat Sergej Maslobojev on a Cage Wars card on On March 29, 2009. Jeff immediately went to Japan and beat top Russian Heavyweight Sergei Kharitonov on April 5, 2009 at Dream 8, giving him 3 wins within two weeks.
On September 12, 2009 at Bitetti Combat MMA 4, Monson had his seven fight win streak snapped, losing to Pedro Rizzo by unanimous decision.
At 5150 Combat League / Xtreme Fighting League – New Years Revolution, Monson defeated John Brown by Split Decision on January 16, 2010.
On March 13, 2010 Monson fights in France at 100% Fight II and defeated Francisco Nonato by Submission (Guillotine Choke) in the 1st Round. Monson losing to Travis Wiuff by Split Decision at XKL Evolution 2 on April 24, 2010. On May 14, 2010 Monson losing in Abu Dhabi to Shamil Abdurahimov Majority Decision at Abu Dhabi Fighting Championship in the Quarter Finals of the 2010 Openweight Grand Prix.
Jeff Monson defeated Bira Lima at Impact FC 1 – The Uprising: Brisbane in Australia on July 10, 2010 by Unanimous Decision.
Monson faced Jason Guida on August 21, 2010 at the event called “Fight Time 1″. Monson defeated Jason Guida at 3:04 of the second round with a guillotine choke.
His next fight was scheduled to be against Neil Wain at “KnuckleUp – Kings of the North”, but Neil Wain has had to pull out his fight, due to injuries occurred from his last fight. Stepping in to replace Neil Wain, is the very man who took Wain out of the fight, Dave Keeley. Monson defeated Keeley via Submission (North-South Choke) in the 1st Round.
Monson defeated Sergey Shemetov at the inaugural Israel Fighting Championship event on Nov. 9. After the fight, he said he wanted to drop down to 205 pounds for his next fight and his friend, Ricco Rodriguez, who later won his fight in the main event, said he wanted to fight Monson for the IFC at light heavyweight.