There has been endless debate about who are the greatest fighters in the sport of MMA. We’ve compiled a list of our top 10 MMA fighters based on MMA training, fight records, longevity of careers, and other distinctions of greatness.
1. Anderson “the spider” Silva
Anderson “the spider” Silva
It is widely agreed that Anderson Silva is one of the best competitors to have ever set foot in the octagon. UFC President Dana White has called him “the greatest martial artist ever.” Silva began fighting in 1997 and boasted an impressive record of 16-4 before he even reached his prime. Silva has defeated the likes of UFC greats such as Chael Sonnen, Vitor Belfort, Forrest Griffin, and Dan Henderson.
2. Georges St. Pierre
Georges St. Pierre
Georges St. Pierre is one of MMA’s most popular fighters. As of July 2017, St. Pierre holds an overall 25-2 MMA record since his fight career began in January of 2002. His only two losses are by stoppage to Matt Hughes via arm bar, and to Matt Sera by way of TKO.
3. Fedor Emelianenko
Fedor Emelianenko boasts a very impressive career. He dominated the sport as he went undefeated from April 2001 to November 2009 with 28 straight matches and a single no contest. Emelianenko defeated some of the best heavyweights in the sport during that streak, including Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Mirko Filipovic.
4. José Aldo
Aldo is a former two-time UFC Featherweight Champion. He went undefeated for a decade in his 18 fights between 2005 and 2015. In Sherdog’s April 2017 Pound-for-Pound ranking, Aldo was called “the greatest featherweight in mixed martial arts history”.
5. Jon Jones
Jon Jones is a three-time UFC Light Heavyweight Champion and was ranked number one in the world during his championship reign. He became the youngest champion in UFC history at the age of 23 and currently has the longest active winning streak in the UFC.
6. Matt Hughes
Matt Hughes is a two-time UFC Welterweight Champion, UFC Hall of Fame inductee, and NJCAA Hall of Fame inductee. During his UFC Career, Hughes put together two separate six-fight winning streaks, defeated all other opponents in the welterweight division, and defended the belt seven times. Hughes is widely considered one of the greatest welterweight fighters of all time, as well as one of the greatest pound-for-pound fighters in the sport’s history.
7. BJ Penn
BJ Penn was the first American Gold medalist of the World Jiu-Jitsu Championship. Penn is a former UFC Lightweight Champion and UFC Welterweight Champion, making him one of only three fighters in UFC history to win titles in multiple weight classes. He went undefeated as a Lightweight for over eight years and was inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame in 2015.
8. Dan Henderson
Dan Henderson is a former Olympic wrestler and UFC Middleweight Champion. He was the first mixed martial artist to concurrently hold two titles in two different weight classes in a major MMA promotion. At the time of his retirement, he was the oldest fighter on the UFC roster and is credited with having defeated a total of seventeen MMA world records across four major MMA promotions.
9. Randy Couture
Randy Couture is a former three-time UFC Heavyweight Champion and two-time UFC Light Heavyweight Champion. He is among only three fighters to hold two UFC championship titles in two different divisions. Couture has competed in a record 16 title fights and holds the most title reigns in the UFC with six. He is the fourth member of the UFC Hall of Fame and is the only person over the age of 40 to have won a UFC Championship fight, having done so four times.
10. Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira
Antônio Nogueira is a former Interim UFC Heavyweight Champion. He became the first Pride Heavyweight Champion in 2001 and is one of only three men to have held championship titles in both Pride Fighting Championships and the UFC.
We offer a variety of MMA Classes at Evolution MMA. With some hard work and training, who knows? Maybe you could make the list some day.