Stephan Bonnar’s death in December was ruled “accidental” Monday as a coroner determined the cause to be “fentanyl, parafluorofentanyl and mitragynine poisoning.”
The UFC Hall of Famer died on December 22 at the age of 45, with ‘suspected’ heart complications mentioned at the time.
In a letter to MMA Fighting on Monday (April 24), Nevada’s Clark County Coroner’s Office said Bonnar had overdosed on fentanyl, parafluorofentanyl and mitragynine.
Fentanyl is a potent synthetic opioid and, along with its analogues, including parafluorofentanyl, is reported to have caused the majority of drug overdose deaths in the US. Mitragynine, for its part, is an active plant alkaloid Kratom, which can be used for medicinal purposes.
Bonnar made his professional MMA debut in 2001, before fighting in the UFC from 2004-2012. He then retired in 2014 after just one fight at Bellator.
Bonnar’s first appearance in front of a UFC crowd came during the first season of the television show. the last fighter. In the season finale, Forrest Griffin outpointed the American while challenging his compatriot for the light heavyweight title. The fight is widely considered a pivotal moment for the UFC, sparking a period of significant growth among the company’s viewership.
Bonnar compiled a professional record of 15-9, facing UFC greats Anderson Silva, Jon Jones and Rashad Evans along the way, as well as Griffin for the second time and another UFC champion in Tito Ortiz.
“Stephan Bonnar was one of the greatest fighters to ever compete in the Octagon,” UFC President Dana White said at the time of Bonnar’s death.
“His fight with Forrest Griffin changed the sport forever and will never be forgotten. The fans loved him, they related to him, and he always gave them his best. He will be missed.”
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