Brian Stann stormed onto the MMA scene in January 2006, when he defeated Aaron Stark via TKO at Sport Fight 14 in Portland, Ore. Stann was immediately brought into the WEC, where he dominated the competition, ultimately winning the WEC light heavyweight title. Stann rolled through his first six opponents before suffering his first defeat in his final bout with the WEC.
After the WEC decided that they were going to focus on the smaller weight classes, Stann transitioned into the UFC along with several other fighters. He did not have the same immediate success in the UFC as he did in the WEC. After dropping two of his first four fights, Stann decided it was time to move to a different weight class. Stann dropped down to middleweight and has not looked back. Since making the move, he is once again destroying his competition, earning highlight reel victories over Chris Leben and Jorge Santiago.
At UFC 136, Stann will face his toughest opponent yet, as he is scheduled to take on former title contender and perennial trash-talker Chael Sonnen.
“Chael will definitely be one of the toughest guys that I have faced and that is what I want,” Stann told The MMA Corner. “I want to fight the best guys out there and Chael is certainly one of them. He is a great wrestler and a powerful guy and I am going have to be perfect with my game plan to get the victory.”
Stann will certainly be well prepared for this fight, and his head coach and trainer Greg Jackson will undoubtedly have a strategy specifically designed for Stann to take advantage of his strengths and exploit Sonnen’s weaknesses.
“We have been working on specific things for this fight to deal with Chael’s shots and his wrestling and working specific things that will play to my advantage, but for me it is more than just the physical sparring that we do in the gym,” Stann admitted. “In addition to sparring and everything else, I have to make sure that I am in great shape both mentally and physically and I feel like I am in the best shape of my life right now.”
Stann, a former Marine and an elite athlete, has always been in great shape, but he credits a new training system called TRX for moving him to a new level.
“Numerous professional athletes, football, baseball, basketball and other fighters and even now the military have started using (TRX) and it has helped me immensely,” said Stann. “For me, using this system has been great. TRX actually sent down their Head of Human Performance to Albuquerque to help me prepare for this fight. They specifically designed workouts for me to help condition certain muscles that we know will need to be conditioned for me to win this fight.
“I started using TRX system while in the Marine Corp, but now we have taken it to an entirely different level in working specific areas to help me with the strategies that we want to implement in the fight. Again for the Chael fight, we have planned all of my workouts and my training around these workouts and I am going to be the best Brian Stann that I can be.”
Stann is known for his striking skills and knockout power and he credits much of that to working with the TRX system. He will need to use everything that he has gained from TRX and every bit of strategy that Greg Jackson can muster against Sonnen.
“I like Chael, he is a good guy and I respect him a lot, but the fact is I want to fight him,” Stann said. “I want to fight him because he is one of the best guys in the world and I want to know where I stand. So come Oct. 8, Chael better be ready because I am going to try and take his head off,” Stann said.
Whether or not Sonnen is ready for this fight after a year off or if Stann is going to take his head off has yet to be seen, but make no mistake about it, come Oct. 8 at UFC 136 this is going to be a war.
Top Photo: Brian Stann (Rob Tatum/The MMA Corner)