UFC, Ultimate Fighting Championship, is the biggest Mixed Martial Arts promotional company in the world. The Company was launched in 1993 and has grown rapidly ever since – UFC has even bought up a lot of its former competitors.
Throughout the history of the UFC, there have been well over 1000 fights, and some might think narrowing this down to 5 would be a hard job. But these 5 fights stand head and shoulders above the rest.
#5 – Ronda Rousey vs. Liz Carmouche UFC 157, February 2013
This fight undoubtedly deserves a place on this list and it has earned its place in a few different ways.
Firstly, this was the first-ever female fight that the UFC put on and not only marked a change in the company but in the whole of MMA. This was the match that proved to many doubters that women’s MMA could be just as exciting as the men’s and that the female fighters were TOUGH.
This is also a special match because it introduced one of the G.O.A.T.s, Ronda Rousey, to the UFC. She would go on to do incredible things.
#4 – Brock Lesnar Vs. Shane Carwin, UFC 116, July 2010
Why did this fight change the UFC?
Well, it was one of the first UFC events to sell over 1 million Pay Per View packages and it is still the 9th best selling UFC fight of all time.
But it also cemented Brock Lesnar as a cross-platform fighting champion. Lesnar moved away from the WWE to prove that he could really fight and after this match, no one doubted him again. Lesnar went on to win multiple titles with the UFC.
#3 – Ronda Rousey vs Amanda Nunes, UFC 206, December 2016
It is a very rare occurrence in sports where you get to witness two of the all-time greats fighting at the same time, let alone competing against one another. However, in December 2016, we MMA fans got very lucky.
This match would decide who was the greatest female MMA fighter of all time. Rousey came out of retirement for this match. It was such an important battle.
Both women were undefeated at the start of the fight, but Nunes shocked the world by knocking Rousey out in 48 seconds.
Nunes is scheduled to return to the UFC in December for the first time since her wife gave birth. She will be defending both her titles. For odds on that fight and other UFC fight night prelims see here.
#2 – Khabib Nurmagomedov vs Conor McGregor, UFC 299, October 2018
McGregor and Nurmagomedov had been at each other’s throats for months leading up to the fight and the UFC did a world tour to promote the “greatest UFC rivalry of all time.” Was it any wonder that that fight was and still is the biggest selling Pay Per View fight the UFC has ever had? (It is worth noting that the top 5 fights on that list all included McGregor).
Over 2.4 million people bought PPV packets for this event. And the world was shocked by the result. No one was expecting Nurmagomedov to get McGregor at all, let alone by submission. At the time McGregor had only been defeated less than a handful of times and was the biggest name in the UFC.
This fight was one of the biggest UFC upsets of all time.
#1 – Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz 2, UFC 202, August 2016
This fight was the third best selling UFC fight of all time. At the time, this fight was the best selling fight ever for the UFC.
This fight was the literal definition of a grudge match. Diaz had defeated McGregor only 4 months earlier via chokehold submission.
McGregor made it very clear that he wanted the rematch and he was intending to rewrite his and Diaz’s history.
One of the things that made this match so exciting was that it went all 5 rounds, something that is very rare in the UFC. This meant that the audience was treated to over 25 minutes of toe-to-toe fighting between two amazing athletes.
In the end, McGregor was crowned the winner by the judges. The match was awarded Fight of the Night. Diaz left with a $2 million dollar paycheck and McGregor left with $3+ million dollars. Not bad for one night’s work…