Mark Madsen bought one-way ticket to Vegas: “I’d be back with a signed UFC contract”

Former Olympian wrestler Mark Madsen put it all on the line, leaving his family behind to chase his dreams - Now he returns to debut in the UFC

The UFC will debut in Copenhagen, Denmark on Saturday, September 28th. The main event sees Norway-based Swede Jack Hermansson take on hard-hitting American Jared Cannonier. However, there are several other interesting fights on the card. One of those will see homegrown, undefeated, former Olympian wrestler Mark “The Olympian” Madsen (8-0) make his UFC debut. Madsen will face Italian lightweight Danilo Beluardo (12-4) in an intriguing match up that most likely will not require the judges score cards.


He decided to put it all on the line, pursuing MMA and chasing his dream to join the UFC. He was determined to join the ranks of his countrymen Nicolas Dalby and Damir Hadzovic.

“I went here (Las Vegas) after my last fight,” Madsen told MMAnytt. “I stayed here for 24 days with my family. During that period I signed with Dominance MMA, with Ali Abdelaziz, who’s representing some of the best fighters in the world. We signed that contract on the first trip over here, I went back home, Ali called me and told me ‘I’m not making any promises, but if you really want this (a UFC contract), if you want a seat at the high table, you need to come here and work with us here in Vegas’. There was not too much thinking about that, it was kind of just buying a one-way ticket. Told my wife I’d be back when I have a UFC signed contract.”

MMAnyt spoke with Madsen ahead of his UFC debut, in the exclusive video which can be seen above. Madsen talks his background in wrestling, the transition to MMA, his opponent, which MMA fighters have inspired him and much more!

▶️ Follow us on Youtube for the best & latest MMA content ▶️
ExclusiveLatest news

With roots in muay thai and as an avid combat sports fan, Sebastian Vendel-Martinez grew up while the MMA scene was blossoming in Sweden. He became part of the MMAnytt team in 2012 and has gone on to become one of the most prominent MMA reporters in Scandinavia. Currently he continues to work as a writer, reporter, video producer/editor and head editor for