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Dean Lister Bio

Dean Richard Lister (February 13, 1976) is an American mixed martial artist and a former King of the Cage Middleweight Champion. He currently fights in the middleweight division after moving down from light heavyweight. Lister's sparring partner and former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, Tito Ortiz, invited him to be his assistant grappling coach on the third season of the Spike TV reality show, The Ultimate Fighter.


  • 1 Biography
    • 1.1 Career
    • 1.2 ADCC
  • 2 Personal life
  • 3 Mixed martial arts record
  • 4 Grappling record
  • 5 Grappling credentials
  • 6 References
  • 7 External links


Lister grew up in a military family and lived in several South American countries, including Venezuela and Panama. Lister speaks several languages. He lived in Panama during the U.S. invasion in 1989, and, according to Lister, he was "right in the middle of a serious combat zone". After living in several different cities in the United States, Lister's family settled in San Diego for Lister's high school years.


Lister often fought as a kid, mostly due to a combination of being the "new kid", a foreigner, and being small for his age. The need to protect himself led Lister to wrestling and martial arts. He started wrestling in high school, and became the high school division wrestling champion and a U.S. National Sambo Champion. Shortly after graduating from high school, Lister visited the Fábio Santos Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy in San Diego with his wrestling teammates, and became very interested in the sport. He started competing in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in 1996, six months after he started training.

Since 1997, Lister has been working as an instructor for Santos. Lister teaches both beginner and advanced students at Victory MMA in San Diego. The classes typically begin with Dean teaching Brazilian Jiu Jitsu techniques, followed by Jiu Jitsu sparring.

In 2000, Lister traveled to Brazil to train at Brazilian Top Team for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in Rio de Janeiro.

Lister currently holds the rank of black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, given to him by Jeffrey Higgs, who holds a black belt under Fábio Santos. He maintains that it is "the biggest and most challenging sport that exists". Lister does not favor any particular technique, although he is mostly known for his leg attacks (foot locks and knee locks). Lister is a two-time U.S. National Sambo champion, a four-time U.S. Machado National Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Champion (weight class and open classes), and a National Gracie Jiu Jitsu champion.

Lister was invited three times (2000, 2003, and 2005) to the Abu Dhabi Combat Club (ADCC) championship, a prestigious grappling tournament consisting only of the top 16 grapplers in the world of each weight class. Lister won the Abu Dhabi Absolute Division championship in 2003, as well as two Superfights in 2003 and 2005; in addition, he set a tournament record by defeating 4 of his opponents consecutively (3 by submission) in 2003.

It is worth noting that one of Lister's MMA losses is against Nathan Marquardt, despite previously submitting him in the 2003 ADCC tournament.

Lister was a King of the Cage Middleweight Champion, and defended his title several times before losing to Jeremy Horn in a Light Heavyweight fight. KOTC stripped Dean of his title after the loss, even though it was at a higher weight class. Years later, Lister avenged this loss by submitting Jeremy Horn with a guillotine choke in the TUF 7 finale.

Lister lost a three-round unanimous decision to Yushin Okami at UFC 92 on December 27, 2008, dropping his UFC record to 4–2. He subsequently requested to be released from his UFC contract, and has since signed with the Maximum Fighting Championship.

Dean Lister and Renato Sobral fought to a draw at Metamoris 3 a submission-only jiu-jitsu match.


Lister won the 2003 ADCC Absolute World championship and was the 2005 Superfight champion, defeating Jean Jacques Machado. He claimed the gold medal again in 2011 in the under 99kg division by submitting João Assis in the final by a heel hook. He also submitted jiu-jitsu world champion Rodolfo Vieira, in his weight division, also with a heel hook. At the 2013 ADCC in Beijing, China, Lister defeated Cristiano Lazzarini in the semi-finals of the under 99kg division by heel hook but would go on to lose on points in the finals to João Assis; In the absolute division Lister submitted both Hideki Sekine and João Gabriel Rocha by heel hook before losing to Marcus Almeida in the semi-finals. Lister also lost to Keenan Cornelius in the bronze medal match both on points.

Personal life

Lister was formerly married to model Flavia Mazoni.

Dean Lister portrait taken during his seminar in Pedro Bessa BJJ Gym, Cork, Ireland.

Mixed martial arts record

Grappling record

Grappling credentials

ADCC World Submission Wrestling Championships

ADCC 2013 –99kg: 2nd Place

ADCC 2011 –99kg: 1st Place

ADCC 2005 Superfight championship: Defeated Jean Jacques Machado.

ADCC 2003 –98kg: Quarter finals Openweight: 1st Place

ADCC 2002 North American Trials -99kg: 1st Place

Record of opponents:

  • Won: Jean Jacques Machado (pts 9-0), Iiir Latifi (sub-guillotine), Nathan Marquardt (sub-kimura), Saulo Ribeiro (sub-kneelock), Marcio 'Pe De Pano' Cruz (pts 3-0), Alexandre Ferreira 'Cacareco' (sub-heelhook), Masutatsu Yano (sub-rear naked choke), Augusto Ferrari (pts 2-0), Radek Turek (sub-heelhook), Rodolfo Vieira (sub-heelhook), Joao Assis (sub-heelhook), Ricardo "Demente" Abreu (sub-heelhook)
  • Lost: Xande Ribeiro (pts), Ricardo Almeida (pts), Vinny Magalhaes (pts)
  • Draw: Xande Ribeiro (Metamoris Pro 2012)


Two-time national (US) sambo champion.

Four-time Machado National (US) BJJ champion

National (US) Gracie BJJ champion.

Three-time ADCC World champion

External links

  • Dean Lister @ BJJ Heroes
  • Dean Lister's MySpace Site
  • Professional MMA record for Dean Lister from Sherdog Edit this at Wikidata

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