UFC and boxing cutman Jacob “Stitch” Duran grew up in a migrant camp in central California where he worked in the fields starting at the age of five. His childhood dreams were to see the world while playing professional baseball like his hero Roberto Clemente. Those dreams ended due to a lack of money and transportation after a brief stint at Merced College.
Jacob then joined the Air Force and spent a year in Thailand where he fell in love with Muay Thai Kickboxing. Upon returning to the States he took a job with RJ Reynolds and trained in boxing and kickboxing. Soon he was teaching others and opened his own kickboxing school in Fairfield, California.
He then became interested in learning how to be a cutman and tried to find out about the secretive profession. With a lot of reading and on-the-job training he became well known in kickboxing circles for his ability to wrap hands and fix cuts. He then moved to boxing where he has worked with many of the top boxers of the last two decades. He currently works with Andre Ward and the Klitschko brothers, among others.
Starting in 2001 Jacob, now known by everyone as Stitch, became a cutman for the Ultimate Fighting Championship. It is in this role that he is most known and he’s demonstrated time and time again that he knows how to keep the fighters in the fight with his unique abilities.
He has worked with all the top UFC fighters and has become one of the most recognizable figures in the sport. He’s appeared in every season of The Ultimate Fighter reality series, has been in movies: Play it to the Bone, Ocean’s Eleven, and Rocky Balboa, he has his own line of equipment, and his book, FROM THE FIELDS TO THE GARDEN: THE LIFE OF STITCH DURAN is currently available.
Stitch is an inspiration to many and well liked and respected by members of the boxing and mixed martial arts community.
From the Fields to the Garden: The Life of Stitch Duran
From a humble beginning in a dirt-poor migrant camp where he picked cotton and fruit with dreams of playing baseball and seeing the world, to being stationed in Thailand as a member of the United States Air Force, to the quiet of the locker room before a big fight, to the center of the cage in the middle of chaos, to the stadiums of Japan, to the arenas of Las Vegas, and ultimately to the lights of Madison Square Garden as the most famous cutman in combat sports … this is THE LIFE OF STITCH DURAN.
The brawl after UFC 38 in London … Stitch was there. Tito Ortiz and his I just killed Kenny shirt … Stitch was there. Mike Tyson and Bob Sapp squaring off after Sapp beat Kimo Leopoldo … Stitch was there. Marvin Eastman’s cut … Stitch was there. The Inoki slap … Stitch was there. Vodka with Fedor after victory … Stitch was there. Pride 28 and Wand’s big knees … Stitch was there. Shadow boxing in a Japanese restaurant with Wladimir Klitschko, TUF 1 Finale, Randy’s first retirement, Pride Final Conflict Resolution, Diaz/Gomi at Pride 33, GSP/Serra at UFC 69, Gonzaga/Cro Cop at UFC 70, Chuck/Wand at UFC 79, Corey Hill’s leg break, and Rocky VI … yep, Stitch was at every one of them, too.
And not only was Stitch there, Stitch had an impact. In the world of combat sports, Stitch has impacted a lot of people, and a lot of fights – all of which can be found in this book, the story of how he made it FROM THE FIELDS TO THE GARDEN: THE LIFE OF STITCH DURAN.
Black Mesa Books
Amazon.com – Kindle Edition
Amazon UK – Kindle Edition