If the name Nate Quarry is familiar to you, then it's probably due to one of three events: a vicious KO, a boring fight, or a dominating performance.
The vicious KO was the result of a Rich Franklin punch that, upon impact with the canvas, left Quarry with many injuries.
The boring fight involved Kalib Starnes running from Quarry for three rounds, and the debut of the "Nate Quarry standing hammerfist" in round three.
Finally, there's the dominating performance against Lodune Sincaid that included a rippling body shot and veritable striking clinic. But when most people think of Nate Quarry, they forget about his Ultimate Fighter past.
The first season of the Ultimate Fighter is notorious for having introduced the world to stars such as Kenny Florian, Diego Sanchez, Forrest Griffin, Stephan Bonnar, Josh Koscheck, Chris Leban, and Mike Swick. But at the beginning of the competition, Nate Quarry was the favorite to win the contract.
Due to an ankle injury, however, Nate was unable to compete, thus eliminating himself from the minds of the viewers as a great fighter. With the great talent that has come from the first season, Nate Quarry was lost in the shuffle.
By the time the Ultimate Fighter finale came around, Quarry was matched against Lodune Sincaid on the undercard. This would give fans their first chance to see his skills as a fighter.
Quarry didn't disappoint, as he hit Sincaid with accurate punches and kicks, and knocked him out in the first round. Quarry followed this dominant performance with a huge win over UFC veteran Shonie Carter. His stock as a fighter began to rise, and he earned a title shot against middleweight champion Rich Franklin.
Rich Franklin was a paramount champion and supreme knockout artist during his reign. Many speculated that Quarry was not ready for him. During the fight, a straight right from Franklin sent Quarry to the hospital and out of MMA for two years, derailing Quarry from his track to stardom.
Although it took two years and countless surgeries, Quarry returned to the octagon. Since his return, Quarry has managed to KO Pete Sell and win a unanimous decision over Kalib Starnes. The fight against Starnes is considered to be one of the most boring fights in UFC history, and cost Kalib Starnes his UFC contract.
Still on the comeback trail, Quarry's next fight will take place at UFC 91 against Demian Maia.
While Quarry is certainly not the most recognizable name in the UFC, he has fought through injuries and vicious knockouts to get where he is currently. Through all the difficulties in his career, Quarry still manages to bring excitement to the octagon. At 16-2, the future is still bright for this seemingly forgotten fighter.