Long before Robert Whittaker climbed the ranks to capture the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s middleweight title in 2017; before Alexander Volkanovski power punched his way into contention at 145 pounds; before George Sotiropoulos pieced together an eight-fight winning streak at lightweight and almost snatched a title shot opposite Frankie Edgar; and before Auckland-born Mark Hunt turned a losing record into the unlikeliest of heavyweight title campaigns, the Australasian region was represented by one man: Elvis Sinosic.
The “King of Rock n’ Rumble” was what they called him, and although his day job was in information technology and he was born and bred in Canberra — a city that is often featured on short lists of the world’s most boring cities — Sinosic was hungry. He was hungry first to supplement his traditional taekwondo and Jeet Kune Do training with other combat disciplines; he was hungry next to plant Australia’s flag in a fledgling sport that, at that time, belonged to the United States and Japan; and he was hungry finally to compete on the biggest stage and face MMA’s biggest names. In a career that spanned 10 years (1997-2007), he inarguably achieved all three, becoming the first Australian to compete in K-1, the first to be signed to the Ultimate Fighting Championship and the first to fight for a UFC title. Today, he looks proudly at the prodigious Australasian MMA scene for which he laid the foundation, contributing to the sport as a coach at his newly formed Kings Academy and an analyst for Fox Sports.
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