Stephen Anthony Abas
(born January 12, 1978) is an American Olympic Freestyle wrestler and Mixed martial artist. Abas became a three-time NCAA Division I wrestling champion in the 125 lb (57 kg) weight division while attending Fresno State University.
He has competed in two world freestyle championships and received a silver medal at the 2004 Olympic Games.
In the summer of 1985, at the age of 7, I was introduced to the sport of freestyle wrestling. It became my passion in life and my goals for success grew with each passing year. The sport,for me, was forever changed when I entered high school and was introduced to folk style wrestling. The new rules and team competitions brought a new excitement and motivated me to explore the limits of the sport. After placing fourth as a freshman I had an understanding of my skill level and my goal for the following year was to just do better. Over the next few years I dominated on the high school level winning 3 state titles going undefeated my last two seasons. My goal was to become one of the most offensive wrestlers to step on the mat. I constantly focused on expanding my arsenal and no matter how many titles I won, I strove to get better.
I carried this mindset with me to Cal State University Fresno where I became a 3x NCAA Champion and four time All American. It was during my time at Fresno State when my Olympic goals became clear. In 2000 I took an Olympic redshirt year to focus on making the Olympic team. After placing fourth I vowed to return 4 years later at the 2004 Olympic trials. This time I would not be denied and I went on to compete in Athens, Greece at the 2004 Olympic Games where I captured a silver medal in the final days of the games.
Olympic wrestling career
In 2008 I attempted to make my 2nd Olympic team but lost in the qualifying match. It was then when I officially retired and left my shoes on the mat. Two years later in an unexpected change of events I had an opportunity to join the MMA fighter world. Now at 3-0 I have my eyes set on the MMA. The transition has been challenging and exciting and I am looking forward to bringing the Abas Flow to the MMA.
In 2010 I was offered an opportunity to train and fight. I wasn’t quite sure how I would like it but I have always wondered how I would do, as many others do, I’m sure. Thanks to my boxing coach Earnest Johnson I developed at a fast rate. I must have had some skills but I attribute my learning curve to the rhythm of the sport. I’ve noticed it before in my wrestling and later in Capoeira. Boxings rhythm and footwork felt real familiar to me so the next obstacle was learning how to let my hands go. After three fights I’ve decided to commit myself to the sport and try to become the best I can be.
In January of 2010 I started training MMA at The Arena in San Diego. I immediately was attracted to boxing and the science of its motion. I really felt that the footwork was very similar to wrestling. The Jui Jitsu part of MMA came real natural. Folk style wrestling teaches ground control and pressure from top so that part came natural. In MMA the top position is key and through my takedowns I intend to be on top often.
My last fight in August of 2011 was by far my best. I had my first stop in the third round and I really felt that inner fighter wake up inside me. I’m excited to explore my limits in this sport and reach the pinnacle which is the Title. Now I’m at Thrive gym in Fresno but I’ve got to thank all my friends who have helped me reach this point.
Full name: Stephen Anthony Abas
Height: 5’5″ (165 cm)
Weight: 121 lbs (55 kg)
Born: January 12, 1978 (Age 34) in Santa Ana, California, United States
Country: United States
Medals: 1 Silver (1 Total)