Bare Knuckle Fighting Champion Ulysses “The Monster” Diaz discusses his journey to become a fighter days before breaking a world-record for a three-second KO
We had the pleasure of sitting with Ulysses "The Monster" Diaz at Another Level Fitness a local Miami gym just days before he broke the world record for fastest bare knuckle knockout in history that took just 3 seconds.
Ulysses Diaz is a 39-year-old Cuban fighter with the Bare Knuckles League. His career’s unique story started when he was 35 years old, an age where many fighters are already retired. Yet his love for boxing developed years before that.
Diaz started boxing when he was six years old, under the guidance of his Cuban family members who loved to box. In his teenage years, he spent time in open gyms helping others develop their fighting skills. Still, as he grew up, Diaz always found himself in trouble for fighting.
When he was around 20 years old, Diaz decided to sign up for a 4-year period in the coast guard. He was honorably discharged eleven months later because of more trouble with fighting. Three years later, Diaz got into more serious trouble fighting and spent two and a half years in prison.
This experience is what Diaz describes as one of the roughest experiences in his life. He believes what got him to that point was that he went into the wrong crowd as a kid. Diaz notes that his mother only ever wanted the best for him. But she struggled to balance being present in his life with working to provide for him. As a result, he spent many of his teenage years hanging out in gangs and doing the wrong things.
However, four years ago, Diaz found the strength and determination to take control of his life. Diaz humbly notes that Pitbull was a huge influence on him. He was like an older brother who took him under his wing, giving him a job to get back on his feet after getting out of prison. Diaz spent his time after prison traveling the world with Pitbull.
“I like to tell people I went from prison to private jets”Ulysses “The Monster” Diaz
In 2016, Diaz was in Colorado when he had an epiphany that made him decide to turn his life around. Diaz didn’t want to continue hanging out in the wrong crowds as a man nearing his forties. This was when he decided to come to Miami and start training for fights.
Ulysses as a professional fighter
In December, just one month into his training, Diaz decided to participate in a professional fight. This is something he had on his bucket list for years. In January 2017, he had his first professional fight in the Dominican Republic. He won by knockout in the first round.
“It was the best high I have ever had in my life,” said Diaz.
That fight fueled Diaz to being working hard daily to get to where he is today, four years later. Diaz spends his days caring for his children and training for his fights. He works each day to maintain his image as the “rare breed” – a 39-year-old man who is still killing it in the boxing realm.
Because of his successful fights in the MMA and UFC, Diaz can share his story and inspire others. He does this by giving back. Each month, he feeds the homeless through an initiative called Fighting Hunger. The Miami Dolphins donated 300, and Miami restaurant Chef Creole also supplied food.
“I feel like I have to give back,” said Diaz. “Fighting saved my life.”
For Diaz, fighting brought him to be his best self, a man fit to be a hero for his 7-year-old son and 8-year-old nephew. It also connected him with his girlfriend, WWE fighter Dana Brooke.
“I am at peace,” said Diaz. “I’m the happiest I’ve ever been.”
Ulysses breaking a world record for fastest knock out
Lastly and most recently Uly stepped into the Bare Knuckle Championship on Friday the 13th of November at the Hotel Intercontinental and broke the world-record for the fastest Knock Out in history in three-seconds against Donelei Benedetto.
As soon as the bell went off, Diaz landed a right overhand blow that sent Benedetto plummeting to the ground. Donelei Benedetto went instantly unconscious, which caused the referee to rush and call the fight in favor of Uly.
To stay You can follow "The Monster" on his Instagram page @uly_monster.