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Former UFC champ Tim Sylvia says birth of son altered his fighting spirit

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It’s been more than a dozen years since Tim Sylvia fought in the UFC, and six and a half years since he retired from the sport.

At UFC 41 in 2003, Sylvia won the heavyweight title with a first-round knockout of Ricco Rodriguez in just his second fight with the promotion and cemented himself as one of its rising stars.

Over the next few years, he remained one of the UFC’s most successful heavyweights. Although he was stripped of the title for a failed drug test after a second championship win, and lost title fights to Frank Mir and Andrei Arlovski after that trying to get it back, he eventually went on a six-fight streak.


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Included in that mix, he beat Arlovski to win the title back, beat him in a rematch to defend it, and defended it against Jeff Monson, as well.

Sylvia fought overseas the last few bouts of his career on a skid, then walked away from the sport.

It’s easy for fighters to become forgotten when they don’t stick around the sport. But Sylvia has kept busy. These days, he has a son and his passion for hunting turned into a TV show, too.

Catch up with Sylvia through UFC Fight Pass’ “Where Are They Now?” series in the video above.

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