Gunnar Nelson (MMA Fighter): Age, Height, Weight, Relationship, Affairs, Bio, Family And More

MMA fighter from Iceland who signed with the Ultimate Fighting Championship in 2012. His fighting style is mixed martial arts. According to the official UFC Welterweight rankings, he currently holds the ninth spot

Gunnar Nelson is an Icelandic mixed martial artist who competes in the welterweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).

He was born on July 28, 1988, in Akureyri, Iceland, and has been competing professionally since 2007.

Although Nelson spent the first few years of his life in Akureyri in the north of Iceland, he has spent the vast majority of his life in Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland, ever since he was a little boy.

Gunnar Nelson
Gunnar Nelson (Image: Source)

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Gunnar Nelson: Who Is He?

He was born on July 28, 1988, in Akureyri.1

Throughout his younger years, he was active in both football and ice hockey.

He began his training in Gj-ryu Karate when he was 13 years old and went on to win the Icelandic Junior Kumite Championship in 2003, 2004, and 2005. He also won the title in 2004 and 2005.

Throughout the years 2003 and 2005, he competed in numerous karate tournaments, all of which he won medals in. At the age of 16, he was recognized as Iceland’s most promising newcomer to the sport of karate in the year 2005.

This honor was bestowed upon him. At the age of 17, he decided to focus his training on Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and grappling rather than karate.

The man who gave Gunnar his name, Haraldur Dean Nelson (also known as Halli Nelson), has ancestry that is both Anglo-American and Icelandic.

In addition to that, he is Gunnar’s manager. Icelandic is the native language of Gunnar’s mother, Gurin Hulda Gunnarsdóttir Nelson.

Gunnar has one sibling, a sister who was born in Reykjavik in 1992 and was given the name Maria Dogg Nelson.

Gunnar Nelson
Gunnar Nelson (Image:Source)

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Gunnar Nelson: Parents, Siblings

His father, Haraldur Dean Nelson, has been his manager at various points in his career. Guerin is the name of the man’s mother. Maria is his younger sister, and she is his only sibling.

Gunnar Nelson is an Icelandic professional mixed martial artist who was born on the 28th of July 1988. He is currently participating in the Welterweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

After achieving outstanding success at the 2009 IBJJF Pan-Ams and the 2009 ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championship, Renzo Gracie bestowed upon him the rank of black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

This honor was bestowed upon him. Conor McGregor, a former UFC fighter who held the featherweight and light heavyweight championships, counts Gunnar as a teammate. Gunnar is also a member of the Mjolnir gym in Iceland and the SBG Ireland gym.

Gunnar Nelson
Gunnar Nelson (Image: Source)

Gunnar Nelson: Race, Religion

  • The identities of Gunnar Nelson’s ethnicity, country, ancestry, and race are topics of interest for a great number of individuals.
  • In 2006, Gunnar started grappling, and in 2007 he received his blue belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) from instructor Matt Thornton of Straight Blast Gym International.
  • From when he was 17 years old, he continued his education mostly with John Kavanagh, who was another one of Thornton’s pupils.
Gunnar Nelson
Gunnar Nelson

Gunnar Nelson: Early Career

Gunnar originally met Kavanagh at one of Kavanagh’s BJJ seminars held at Mjolnir.2

Kavanagh, who is the proprietor of SBG Ireland, has remained Gunnar’s head coach up till the present day.

Gunnar had already made sufficient progress by the year 2008 for Kavanagh to grant him his brown belt; however, due to the fact that Kavanagh had not earned his own black belt for more than six years at the time, he was unable to grant Gunnar his own black belt in accordance with IBJJF regulations.

Gunnar was therefore unable to receive his own black belt. After that, Gunnar attended the Renzo Gracie Academy in New York for some time in order to increase his rank and earn a black belt.

Shortly after he had arrived, he had already competed for their squad in a variety of contests, ultimately bringing home a silver medal in the brown belt category of the 2009 Mundials.

Gunnar Nelson: Career

Starting his career in May 2007, Gunnar made his debut in mixed martial arts in Copenhagen, Denmark, fighting against Danish competitor John Olesen.

The judges scored the fight as a draw. In the 16 months following his debut, Gunnar triumphed in five more fights across Ireland, the United Kingdom, and Denmark before taking a hiatus from the sport for nearly two years.

He returned to the octagon in February 2010 at BAMMA 2: Roundhouses at the Roundhouse, where he defeated Sam Elsdon in the first round via submission.


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He followed this up with another first-round win against Danny Mitchell at Cage Contender 6 in Manchester, England.

Later that year, he returned to BAMMA and went up against previously unbeaten British prospect Eugene Fadiora at BAMMA 4: Reid vs. Watson, ultimately winning in the first round with a submission.

In February 2012, Gunnar made a successful comeback to MMA with a first-round armbar submission against Ukrainian fighter Alexander Butenko at Cage Contender 12 in Dublin, Ireland.

In late 2012, he signed a multi-fight deal with the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), becoming the first Icelandic fighter to join the organization.

Gunnar was slated to make his promotional debut against Pascal Krauss at UFC on Fuel TV: Struve vs. Miocic on September 29, 2012.

However, Krauss withdrew from the fight due to an injury, and Gunnar eventually faced DaMarques Johnson in a catchweight bout of 175 lbs. Gunnar won the fight via rear-naked choke in the first round.

At UFC on Fuel TV: Barão vs. McDonald on February 16, 2013, Gunnar was scheduled to fight Justin Edwards, but Edwards withdrew from the bout due to an injury.

Jorge Santiago replaced him, and Gunnar won the fight via unanimous decision.

Gunnar was supposed to fight Mike Pyle at UFC 160 on May 25, 2013, but he had to withdraw from the match due to an injury, and Rick Story replaced him.

A year later, on March 8, 2014, Gunnar returned to the UFC and defeated Omari Akhmedov via submission in the first round, earning his first Performance of the Night bonus award.

Gunnar Nelson: Awards

In addition, he was awarded first place at the 2009 Pan American Championship for the Gi division, as well as first place and silver in the 2009 Pan American Championship for the open class (No-Gi).

Gunnar won the fourth place spot in the absolute division at the 2009 ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championship.

There, he competed against and defeated BJJ Black Belts Jeff Monson and David Avellan, both of whom were significantly bigger than Gunnar.

After less than a year of training at his school, Gracie decided that he had seen enough and bestowed upon him the rank of black belt.

In 2011, Gunnar was once again offered a spot in the ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championship. He competed in the tournament and had a successful run, but he did not bring any medals back with him.

He was victorious against Marko Helen, who was the then-current and two-time European Champion and multiple-time Finnish champion, as well as Bruno Frazzato, who was the Brazilian and American champion and a former World Champion.

Gunnar Nelson: Net Worth 2023

Gunnar Nelson is not just one of the wealthiest mixed martial arts (MMA) fighters but also one of the most popular. Our research, as well as information found on Wikipedia, Forbes, and Business Insider, indicate that Gunnar Nelson has a net worth of $3 million.

Gunnar Nelson: Dating Life

According to the information that we have on file, Gunnar Nelson might be single and has never been engaged in the past.3

Gunnar Nelson is currently not dating anyone as of the 12th of January, 2023.

Throughout his whole career, Nelson has never engaged in any significant amount of weight cutting. While his training weight is somewhere between 175 and 176 pounds, he needs to cut weight by only 5 or 6 pounds.

He has been a strong supporter of instituting strict rules against weight cutting, arguing that the practice is dangerous to the fighters and counterproductive to the UFC as it leads to fights being cancelled or fought at catch weight. He has been a strong proponent of instituting strict rules against weight cutting.

Gunnar Nelson
Gunnar Nelson

Quick Facts

Given Name Gunnar Lúðvík Nelson
Nickname Gunni
Born Akureyri, Iceland
Current Residence Stoke-on-Trent, England
Date of Birth July 28, 1988.
Nationality Icelandic
College/University N/A
Last Fight March 19, 2022, in UFC
Last Weigh In 171 lbs
Weight Class Welterweight 
Weight 170 lbs. (77 kg)
Height 5 ft 11 in
Reach 72 in
Career Disclosed Earnings $333,000
Fighting out of Reykjavík, Iceland
Foundational style Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Favorite Position N/A
Rank 2nd Degree Black Belt in BJJ        
Black Belt in Goju-Ryu Karate
Awarded By  Renzo Gracie
Lineage Mitsuyo Maeda -> Carlos Gracie Sr. -> Carlos Gracie, Jr. -> Renzo Gracie -> Gunnar Nelson
Team/Association Mjolnir/SBG Ireland

FAQs about Gunnar Nelson

Who is Gunnar Nelson?

Gunnar Nelson is an Icelandic mixed martial artist who competes in the welterweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). He was born on July 28, 1988, in Akureyri, Iceland, and has been competing professionally since 2007.

What is Gunnar Nelson’s fighting style?

Gunnar Nelson is known for his excellent grappling skills, particularly in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and his unorthodox striking style. He often uses a karate-style stance and throws a variety of spinning kicks and strikes.

How has Gunnar Nelson performed in the UFC?

Gunnar Nelson has had a successful career in the UFC, with a record of 17 wins and 5 losses as of 2021. He has defeated notable fighters such as Alex Oliveira, Alan Jouban, and Brandon Thatch. However, he has also suffered losses to high-level opponents such as Demian Maia and Leon Edwards.

What is Gunnar Nelson’s training background?

Gunnar Nelson has been training in martial arts since he was a child. His father is a black belt in karate, and his grandfather was a boxer. Nelson himself has trained extensively in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, under the guidance of renowned coach John Kavanagh at SBG Ireland.

Has Gunnar Nelson won any championships?

Although Gunnar Nelson has not won a UFC championship, he has won several titles in other organizations. He was the Cage Contender welterweight champion in 2010 and the European MMA welterweight champion in 2012. He also won the ADCC European Championships in 2009.

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Kartick Biswas
Kartick Biswas

I've been in the online business for over five years. I started my career back in 2013 as a freelance contributor and feature writer for an Indian-based news publication. One of my primary goals is to undermine current issues and see the significant advantages society can gain from the various business move or momentum.

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