Gable Steveson, the 23-year-old Olympic wrestling gold medalist, stunned the world with his victory over Geno Petriashvili in the 125 kg final at the Tokyo Games. In September 2021, Steveson made history by signing a multi-year deal with WWE, becoming the second Olympic wrestling gold medalist to join the company, after the Hall Of Famer, Kurt Angle.
Even under WWE’s contract, Gable was continuously under the radar of the biggest MMA promotion, UFC. Recently, Stevenson’s appearance at a famous MMA gym suggests that his career might be taking a turn from being a WWE wrestler to becoming an MMA fighter.
Gable Stevenson seen at famous MMA gym
For a past few weeks, Gable Stevenson has been active on social media, teasing his fans with his potential MMA move by calling out big names like Francis Ngannou, Jon Jones, and Dana White. He has also been visiting various MMA gyms, such as American Top Team and Sanford MMA to spar with top-level fighters and learn different styles.
Recently, Stevenson was seen training with UFC gloves in the Kill Cliff FC, a mixed martial arts gym based in Deerfield Beach, Florida. Kill Cliff FC is one of the world’s most prestigious MMA teams, with over 80 professional fighters, including champions from the UFC, Bellator, ONE, and other MMA organizations
Stevenson finished his collegiate career at the University of Minnesota, where he is a two-time NCAA Division I national champion and a two-time Dan Hodge Trophy winner, similar to former UFC and WWE Heavyweight Champion, Brock Lesnar.
Previously he had worked with some of the best coaches and fighters in the industry, such as Brock Lesnar, Greg Jackson, and Jon Jones. His debut in MMA is still not confirmed, and he has also hinted that he might delay his MMA move until after the 2024 Olympics in Paris, where he hopes to defend his gold medal.
Gable Stevenson’s far from impressive NXT debut
Gable Steveson made his first appearance on WWE television at SummerSlam 2021, where he was seen in the crowd cheering for his friend Roman Reigns, who defended the Universal Championship against John Cena.
Stevenson was drafted to the Raw brand in October 2021. He made his in-ring debut at NXT The Great American Bash on July 30, 2023, where he faced Baron Corbin in a singles match. The match concluded in a double count-out after both competitors brawled outside the ring. However, fans were not happy to see the controversial result.
Despite Stevenson being portrayed as the babyface, fans booed him throughout the match. Some fans may have resented him for copying the WWE legend Kurt Angle, and fans preferred Corbin’s character, who’s performance was realistic and entertaining than Stevenson’s.
Some fans state that WWE failed to use Stevenson and they lacked the creative ideas for his match bookings. His WWE career was short lived and his recent appearances in MMA training facilities indicates his potential debut to the Mixed Martial Arts.