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Dan "The Beast" Severn (born June 8, 1958 in Coldwater, Michigan) is an American mixed martial artist and professional wrestler, notable for his success in the early years of Ultimate Fighting Championship tournaments. Severn has also fought for many NHB and shootwrestling organizations including International Fighting Championship, Extreme Challenge, Future Brawl, United Shoot Wrestling Federation, PRIDE, U-Japan, King of the Cage, Gladiator Challenge and a number of Brazilian organizations.

Severn has a long history in Greco-Roman and freestyle wrestling. He was a four time All-American at Arizona State, the original Sunkist Kid Sunkist Kids, and a wrestling coach at both his alma mater Arizona State and Michigan State. He has wrestled in Turkey, Japan, Cuba, Hungary, Canada and France as well as the USA. In his long career, he has held many national and international titles; he was often introduced to the UFC Octagon as holding more than 95 in total. Severn also held the US national record for victories by pin from 1976 to 1992, his 112 eventually overtaken by the 114 of Matt Padgett.

Severn was the first world-class wrestler to enter the UFC, becoming indicative of the ensuing period of dominance by wrestlers continued by men like Don Frye in UFC 8 and 9 and Mark Coleman in UFC 10 and 11. Severn entered the UFC in 1995 at UFC 4: Revenge of the Warriors, where he captured the hearts of many UFC fans by executing two impressive back suplexes on Anthony Macias. In the finals of UFC 4, Severn was defeated by Royce Gracie, who used a triangle choke hold, but only after the much bigger Severn dominated in Gracie's guard for around 15 minutes, lacking the striking experience to finish his opponent. Severn rectified this loss when he captured the championship in UFC 5: Return of the Beast, defeating Dave Beneteau in the finals. Severn went on to win Ultimate Ultimate '95, a tournament of UFC champions defeating Oleg Taktarov. He also managed his friend and fellow champion, Don Frye, during UFC 8, and would later train the successful female competitor, Becky Levi. His first and only fight in PRIDE was a lackluster draw against Kimo in 1997; since then, he has continued to compete in a variety of MMA promotions, such as King of the Cage, the UFC, the British Ultimate Combat and Gladiator Challenge among others. In 1999, Severn and Levi founded a new mixed martial arts promotion intended to provide a platform for amateur fighters, called The Danger Zone, in which Severn also took part.

Severn is an accomplished professional wrestler, having worked for UWF International in Japan, the National Wrestling Alliance and the World Wrestling Federation. He entered the NWA in 1995, and defeated Chris Candido for his first NWA World Heavyweight Championship on a Smokey Mountain Wrestling card. Severn would go on to win the UFC championship that year, making him the first and only man to hold the NWA and UFC championships simultaneously. During his short stint in the WWF, he competed in the Brawl For All tournament, beating The Godfather in the first round. However, he withdrew prior to the quarterfinals, allowing The Godfather to advance by default. He appeared in 2000 in the short-lived WXO promotion. Severn would not again hold professional wrestling gold until 2001, when he again won the NWA championship, this time from Shinya Hashimoto. This title reign would be controversial (an American referee in a Japanese promotion issuing a fast count), and short-lived, as the title was stripped from Severn when he was unable to appear on the inaugural TNA pay-per-view to defend his title; the belt was won that evening by Severn's long-time rival, Ken Shamrock.

Severn now is the president of the successful Price of Glory Wrestling held out of his training facility in Coldwater, Michigan. POG Wrestling is known for breeding some of the top talent performing in the Midwest today including Jack Thriller, Johnny Dynamo, CJ Otis, Rastakhan, BAM, JT Zorin, and more. Severn also wrestles for the promotion on occasion. His most notable feud in POG Wrestling has been with Jimmy Jacobs.

UFC History:

  • UFC 4 (12/16/94): Severn defeated Anthony Macias by submission at 1:45 in the First Round. Severn defeated Marcus Bossett by submission at 0:54 in the First Round. Severn lost to Royce Gracie by submission at 15:49 in the First Round.

  • UFC 5 (4/7/95): Severn defeated Joe Charles by submission at 1:39 in the First Round. Severn defeated Oleg Taktarov by stoppage at 4:21 in the First Round. Severn defeated Dave Beneteau by submission at 3:00 in the First Round.

  • UFC 6 (7/14/95): Severn lost to Ken Shamrock by submission at 2:15 in the First Round.

  • Ultimate Ultimate 95 (12/16/95): Severn defeated Paul Varelans by submission at 1:01 in the First Round. Severn defeated Tank Abbott by unanimous decision at the end of First Round. Severn defeated Oleg Taktarov by unanimous decision at the end of First Round.

  • UFC 9 (5/17/96): Severn defeated Ken Shamrock by split decision at the end of First Round.

  • UFC 27 (9/22/00): Severn lost to Pedro Rizzo by submission at 1:33 in the First Round.

Official Website: www.the-beast.com

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