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After viral win over 529-pound man, Darina Mazdyuk has big plans for Bellator career

You remember the name Darina Mazdyuk, right? It should at least job your memory, because if you’re a frequent visitor of MMA websites, there’s a good chance you saw the viral video of her beating a man back in November.

This wasn’t just any man, though. The inter-gender contest saw Mazdyukscore a first-round TKO victory against Grigory Christyakov, who tipped the scales at 529 pounds against Mazdyuk’s 139.

The freak show fight – for better or worse – caught the attention of many, including the Bellator brass. It didn’t take long fo the promotion to reach out to Mazdyuk with a contract offer, and she said she jumped at the opportunity and intends to thrive.

“Bellator contacted me about one to two weeks after the fight video came out – notably after comments of our fight from the likes of Mickey Rourke, Mark Goddard, and Mike O’Hearn,” Mazdyuk told . “I will get even more attention when I start to conquer Bellator.”

Although her current notoriety stems from the viral bout, Mazdyuk assured skeptics that she is not a gimmick. She has an extensive background in martial arts, having trained in some variety of combat since she was 15. She’s got experience in sambo and karate, but MMA is now the main focus.

The optics of her viral bout tended to garner different impressions within the sport. Nevertheless, Mazdyuk got the attention she was seeking and managed to flip it into a spot on the Bellator roster. It’s a concept Mazdyuk had in mind for some time, she said, and was ultimately pleased to execute it.

“The idea to hold this fight came from me,” Mazdyuk said. “There was no quarrel with Grigory. There was an idea for a fight between a woman and a man. We had been looking for a long time for someone who would agree. The organizers found two fighters and from them I chose Grigory.”

Besides the viral mismatch win, which was an exhibition, Mazdyuk, 28, has compiled an official 3-1 professional record. Madzyuk has competed at openweight, lightweight, featherweight, and bantamweight. She rides a two-fight winning streak and holds one TKO victory in three wins.

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