Leonard Garcia has established himself as one of the most exciting fighters in the sport of MMA today. His constant go for broke style has seen him in highlight videos from the WEC/UFC as well as attracted many fans to his side.
Leonard Garcia was born in Planview, Texas, USA on July 14th 1979. Leonard was a born fighter and began training at local club in his town at a young age. He eventually found his home at Jackson's Submission Fighting in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Under the tutelage of Greg Jackson, Leonard would hone his aggressive stand up skills as well as refine his ground skills. Leonard began his MMA career at the age of 20, fighting in the regional circuit in the western united states. He was able to compile a record of 5 and 1 in his first 6 fights, winning all 5 by submission. Leonard's next fight would see him compete for the WEC in there inaugural event. Leonard would win the fight by KO in the second round with a head kick. He would eventually return to the WEC later in his career after it had been purchased by Zuffa.
After submitted three more opponents, Leonard would get the call to the big stage of the UFC and get the opportunity to fight the best in the world at 155 pounds. At UFC 69 Leonard was matched against the red Roger Hurerta. The fight was a prelim fight but was so exciting that it was aired after the main event. The fight was a slugfest and took place all over the canvas of the cage. Huerta was more successful with the grappling portion of the fight and was handed the unanimous decision. An image from the fight decorated the cover of sports illustrated which was a huge step forward for the sport of MMA. The performance by Leonard impressed the UFC brass and he was given another opportunity to fight in the world famous octagon. He would be matched up against Ultimate Fighter 5 competitor Allen Berube. Leonard would go on to submit his opponent in the first round by rear naked choke. Garcia then faced off against the lanky Cole Miller at a UFC Fight Night Event and would go on to lose a decision to the bigger Miller. This fight would be Leonard's last in the UFC for some time and his last at lightweight.
With Zuffa purchasing the WEC in 2006, the lighter weight classes had gained a platform to perform under the biggest MMA promoter in the world.
Being an undersized lightweight, Leonard would make the drop down to featherweight and reinvent himself in the WEC. Garcia's first fight under the newly promoted WEC would take place right in his backyard of Albuquerque, New Mexico at WEC 32. His opponent would be the hard hitting Japanese fighter Hiroyuki Takaya. This fight wasn't expected to last to long and it did not. Leonard was able to knock out Takaya in under two minutes of the first round. Up next for Garcia was former UFC lightweight champion Jens Pulver. Many expected the more experience Pulver to be to much for Garcia but they were wrong as Pulver received the same punishment as Garcia last opponent and was finished under two minutes. With two big wins in the WEC, Leonard was given the opportunity to fight for the title against Champion Mike Brown at WEC 39. This time it would be Garcia being finished in under two minutes as he was caught with a big punch and then submitted with an arm triangle choke.
Leonard's next five fights in the WEC would see him going 2-2-1. Controversy would begin to follow Garcia at this point in his career. With his aggressive style he impressed the judges by pushing the pace, but often failed on landing meaningful strikes and took a lot punishment in the process. Some who he was able to see some decisions go his way
This trend would continue into his return to the UFC, after the WEC/UFC merger in 2010. In his return bout, Garcia would face Nam Phan and would be completely dominated for three rounds. Some how he came away with a split decisions victory, angering many fans as to the credentials and accountability of MMA judges. Chan-Sung Jung would get his revenge from a controversial split decision loss against Garcia from the WEC at a UFC Fight Night Event. He would submit Leonard with a twister and become the first person to finish and opponent with such a technique in the UFC. Garcias last fight at UFC 136 was the rematch against Nam Phan, which was a repeat of the first as far as who dominated but his time the judges would be looking at the fight and not at there feet. Nam Phan was awarded the unanimous decision and the hard hitting Garcia would have to go back to the drawing board and think about changing his high risk style.
Kimurawear is the number one online store for premium mixed martial arts equipment and mma gear in Canada. We carry all sorts of training equipment and supplies, for all forms of combat sports including, muay thai, mixed martial arts, boxing and much more.
We pride ourselves on our high quality products and stand behind our brand.