Wrestling And MMA Worlds Pay Respects To Stephan Bonnar

Former IMPACT Wrestling star and UFC Hall of Famer Stephan Bonnar has died aged 45. Per MMA Fighting, law enforcement officers confirmed that the legendary MMA fighter passed away on December 22. The official cause of Bonnar's death has yet to be confirmed, though the UFC stated that it was due to "presumed heart complications."

The MMA and wrestling worlds were quick to pay their respects to the 45-year-old. The UFC released a statement on Twitter, noting noted that the company is "saddened by the passing of UFC Hall of Famer Stephan Bonnar." According to the MMA Fighting report, UFC President Dana White described him as "one of the most important fighters to ever compete in the Octagon," highlighting one of his bouts with Forrest Griffin as "a fight that changed the sport forever."

Outside of MMA, Bonnar was known for his short stints in IMPACT Wrestling between 2017 and 2019. He teamed with Moose against King Mo and Bobby Lashley at Bound for Glory 2017. After that, he made sporadic appearances for the company and eventually competed against his aforementioned partner. Outside of IMPACT, Bonnar also competed on the independent circuit and made appearances for promotions such as House of Glory and Smashmouth Pro Wrestling.

IMPACT Wrestling also took to Twitter to honor Bonnar. "We're deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Stephan Bonnar. We offer our deepest condolences to his friends and family at this difficult time," the statement read. Elsewhere, Moose sent his condolences to the UFC Hall of Famer, writing, "R.I.P."

Wrestling Inc. sends our condolences to Stephan Bonnar's family and friends.