Best UFC Fighters of All Time - Learn About Top 10 MMA Legends

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This page is written by
Siobhan Aslett
Siobhan AslettIrish Sportsbook Specialist
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Rebecca Mackay
Rebecca MackayHead of Content
According to our Editorial Guide

Dana White’s UFC is the biggest mixed-martial-arts promotion in the world. The company has been around in one form or another since the early 1990s, starting out life as the Ultimate Fighter Championship, a contest to determine which of the martial arts was most effective. Since then, it has grown into an international powerhouse and created multiple household names, including the likes of Conor McGregor and Ronda Rousey. While the promotion is still young in relative terms, it has seen some of the greatest fighters of all-time enter its Octagon. Let’s take a look at 10 of the best UFC fighters of all time.

Top 10 UFC Fighters of All Time

  1. Georges St Pierre
  2. Jon Jones
  3. Anderson Silva
  4. Khabib Nurmagomedov
  5. Stipe Micocic
  6. Amanda Nunes 
  7. Daniel Cormier 
  8. Demetrious Johnson 
  9. Conor McGregor
  10. José Aldo

Who are the Best UFC Fighters Currently?

At the time of writing, Jon Jones sits on top of the UFC pound-for-pound rankings, which is tough to argue with. Jones took three years away from the Octagon, only to return and defeat Cyril Gane, the number 1 ranked heavyweight, to win the vacant UFC Heavyweight title. 

Other names in contention, include the likes of Israel Adesanyah, Alexander Volkanovski, and Leon Edwards. 

Amanda Nunes reigns as the undisputed pound-for-pound number one in the female divisions. Nunes has lost just one fight since 2015, a defeat to Julianna Peña in 2021, which she quickly rectified with a win by unanimous decision over her former conqueror the following July. 

Is There an Undefeated UFC Fighter?

There are plenty of fighters that are still in the early days of their careers that are unbeaten, but there is only one major UFC fighter that has retired with an unbeaten record, and that is Khabib Nurmagomedov. Khabib finished his career with a 29-0 record, having fought 13 of those fights in the UFC. 

His list of victims included notable names in the lightweight division, like Al Iaquinta, Dustin Poirier, and Dustin Poirier. His most famous victory came when he defeated Conor McGregor at UFC 229 via submission in 2018. Given the quality of opposition fighters come up against and the nature of the sport itself, it is extremely rare that a fighter will finish their career unbeaten, with Khabib being the only major name in the UFC to do so. 

What is the Biggest UFC Rivalry?

The answer to this will largely depend on which era of the UFC you consider the best. A bit of recency bias would put Conor McGregor vs Khabib Nurmagomedov in the top spot. The two men propelled the UFC back into the spotlight in 2018 after what had been a quiet few years for the promotion. 

McGregor’s ability to spotlight the sport is unquestionable, and his feud with Nate Diaz is also widely considered one of the greatest of all time. Fans that have been around a little longer will argue that feuds like Tito Ortiz vs Chuck Liddell and Ken Shamrock vs Royce Gracie were instrumental in putting the UFC on the map and rightfully deserve their place on the Mount Rushmore of UFC feuds.

Final Thoughts on Best UFC Fighters

We can't deny that the world of UFC has been coloured by a remarkable list of fighters that left their mark. These champions have paved the path to greatness with their exceptional skills, determination, and above all else, a passion for the sport. While UFC continues to evolve, there will always be new competitors that want to dominate the scene. Still, these legendary fighters' legacy will forever be etched into MMA history.

Best UFC Fighters FAQs

Who is the highest-earning UFC fighter?

It should come as no surprise that Conor McGregor is the highest-earning UFC fighter of all time. The Irish fighter has never been shy about talking about the money he has made, and his career earnings from the UFC are estimated to be around $20 million. His long-time rival, Khabib Nurmagomedov, is in second place, scoring around $14 million. Khabib, while an incredible fighter, has definitely had his profile raised due to his heated feuds with McGregor.

What weight classes are UFC fighters in?

For the UFC male fighters, there are seven different weight classes. They are flyweight, bantamweight, featherweight, lightweight, welterweight, middleweight, light heavyweight, and heavyweight. The women’s division has four weight classes: strawweight, flyweight, bantamweight, and featherweight. 

What is the most popular UFC fighting style?

There is a lot of debate among UFC and MMA fans about the dominant style in the sport. The common consensus is that wrestling and Brazilian Jui Jitsu are the most effective combat style inside the Octagon. The reason for this is likely because they are incredibly effective in close combat situations and can be used effectively to neutralise big hitters. 

Of course, not everyone is specialised in these, and knockout styles like Thai boxing and boxing also have their place. These also tend to be more exciting to watch, delivering knockout blows, while wrestling and BJJ tend to be slightly less dramatic. 

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Siobhan Aslett

Irish Sportsbook Specialist

Sports & sportsbook expert of 8 years. Specialising in a subject close to her heart, sports, Siobhan informs online sports betting fans about the latest news & best sports betting sites.

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