Then, on the second day there was more of the unexpected. For example, Marcelo Garcia lost the final of his weight class to Pablo Popovitch on a last minute guard pass. What was even more surprising, there was an Icelandic fighter called Gunnar Nelson who refused to lose in the absolute division despite losing early in his weight class. First he wrestled his way through veteran MMA fighter Jeff Monson (3-0) and then submitted David Avellan on the second round. Finally, he had to surrender to Xande Ribeiro by a kneebar in the semifinals but his 2 wins were pretty impressive because virtually nobody had heard of the guy. At least I've been a fan ever since..
Gunnar earned his black belt in 4 years and has a back ground in karate. This week end he is fighting for the second time in the UFC against Jorge Santiago. He's 10-0-1 so far with no decision wins. What makes me believe in this guy is that he has decent striking to compliment his ADCC level grappling skills (there are also comments by Kenny Florian that he can "hang" with GSP's wrestling in training). On top of all this, he is only 24.
A nice interview with Gunnar
Gunnar's interview in MMAFighting