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Mackenzie Dern is a former world number one ranked IBJJF competitor (International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation) and number four in the UFC Women's strawweight ranking.
An American national by birth, Mackenzie Dern was born in Phoenix, Arizona on March 24, 1993. She is the daughter of decorated grappling megastar, Wellington Dias.
Having observed her father's heroics in the challenging arena of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu from a very young age, the girl took a particularly keen interest in the art form. Naturally, she began taking training lessons from the tender age of three years, under the watchful eyes of her father and her stepmother Luciana Tavares, who is also a black belt in the sport.
Having worked her way into the world of combat sports, the MMA fighting sensation won both, challenging fights and hefty paychecks across her illustrious career.
However, her estimated net worth is currently pegged at approximately $1-2 million, which comes primarily from her MMA fight purses and an established stint as a BJJ black belt artist.
According to available records, Mackenzie Dern's biggest paycheck from an MMA event is estimated to be around $ 164,000. Similarly, her UFC fight night against Ashley Yoder helped her secure a paycheck that is valued to be $53,500. However, there is no data available with regards to her fixed yearly income.
The IBJJF world champion stands at an imposing height of 5 ft 4 in (163 cm). Being an MMA professional, her weight characteristics have continuously shifted between strawweight and catchweight divisions. However, according to available data, she weighs approximately 115 lbs. (52 kg), which has helped her to challenge her opponents with utmost ease.
Born on March 24, 1993, in Arizona, the MMA superstar is presently 29 years of age.
Most of her childhood was spent traveling back and forth between Arizona and Brazil. Hence, Dern is quite fluent in both English and Portuguese but has stated that she prefers Portuguese as her primary tongue.
Mackenzie Dern graduated from Ironwood High School in Glendale, Arizona.
Mackenzie Dern is married to a professional surfer named Wesley Santos.
The duo welcomed their baby daughter Moa Dern Santos in June 2019. The doting Mommy regularly posts adorable pictures of their cute bundle of joy on Instagram.
Mackenzie Dern is renowned worldwide for securing a record for most submission wins in the UFC strawweight division, along with the title of second-most submission wins among female UFC fighters. Her quick adaptability and athletic reflexes are said to be the reason behind her formidable MMA career.
The champ boasts of an equally compelling record in the world of Jiu-Jitsu, having acquired the crown of an ADCC and no-gi world champion. With seven professional wins by submission in BJJ, Mackenzie Dern is surely one of the best Jiu-Jitsu fighters in Women's MMA.
At age 14, Dern began competing in the adult divisions, where she successfully won the world championship at each belt level, which ultimately led her to the prestigious black belt in December 2012. She used to regularly engage in judo tournaments which helped in improvising her throwing techniques. Having strengthened her expertise in the world of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Dern decided to switch to a more challenging art form- Mixed Martial Arts.
However, it was her participation in the famed Legacy Fighting Alliance that laid the foundation for a fruitful MMA career. Making her MMA debut against Kenia Rosas in the strawweight division, Dern successfully won the match by unanimous decision. Her next encounter against Montana De La Rosa was a controversial one as she missed the target for strawweight and hence, was forced to fight in the catchweight division. Surprisingly, she comfortably won the fight by first-round submission.
Having curated an envious 4-0 record in the Legacy Fighting Alliance, the grappler decided to shift her focus to the Invicta Fighting Championship, where she successfully defeated Kaline Medeiros via an armbar in round three.
Eventually, Mackenzie Dern decided to make her promotional UFC debut for the Ultimate Fighting Championship on March 3, 2018. Dern's first UFC fight night was organized against Ashley Yoder, which she won by split decision, followed by a face-off against Amanda Cooper on May 12, 2018.
However, after a short hiatus from the octagon, the starfighter returned to the ring to face Amanda Ribas in October 2019. Although she lost the fight due to a unanimous decision, the failure had very little impact on the gritty woman.
Subsequently, she went on to compete in six more UFC fight night events, winning five of them and losing one. Across her decorated MMA career, Dern has thrice been awarded the Performance Of The Night title while garnering the Fight Of The Night award against Marina Rodriguez.
Mackenzie Dern has been awarded the Performance Of The Night title three times across her eventful career. She also secured the Fight Of The Night award in October 2021.
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