With UFC 200 fast approaching; We decided to do a countdown of the top 20 fighters in UFC History. The criteria is intentionally left to the voters interpretation, some counted Pride, some counted WEC, some threw that out all together. I do want to mention that Fedor is not ranked, having never fought for the UFC at all, even though he did get a Zuffa check as a member of Strikeforce.
Today we kick off the top 20 proper, with 14-20.
David(5): Overshadowed by his pupil, but there is no shame when it’s Matt Hughes. Pat is one of those men who’s career outside the cage again overshadowed what he did inside the cage. It’s a shame.
Joao(5): Pat won the UFC 16 Welterweight tournament and then won the Welterweight title at Ultimate Brazil. Miletich brought with himself to the octagon a well rounded game with a mix of wrestling, BJJ and karate. He was also successful in setting up the Miletich Fighting Systems camp that produced champions such as Matt Hughes, Jens Pulver and Tim Sylvia, arguably the most successful camp in the early days of the UFC.
Joao: Frank and Dana White do not get along and that is the only reason why Shamrock is not on the UFC’s Hall of Fame. Frank was probably the UFC’s very first well rounded fighter. Joining the UFC with a wealth of overseas experience, he was able to win the Light Heavyweight title and then successfully defend it 4 times, including an historic fight against Tito Ortiz at UFC 22. Frank then decided to relinquish his belt and leave the UFC – as the Light Heavyweight title with a 5-0 record on that organization.
#18) 10pts Wanderlei Silva
Roni: Legend. Dominated Pride’s LHW like no other.
Roni: While most of his prime was at Pride, I can’t disregard what he did there before he joined the UFC.
Joao: Forrest became Light Heavyweight champion for a short time, after beating Rampage Jackson. He has always shown a true heart of a lion when fighting inside the octagon, but his biggest contribution to the UFC – and to MMA in general – was the first season of the Ultimate Fighter. He decisively helped to make the UFC a household brand through besting his opponents on the show and through beating Stephan Bonnar in the finale, in what was of the best fights ever.
Joao: “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” was potentially the first mainstream fighter in the UFC, if we consider his UFC 40 bout against Ken Shamrock the start of the mainstream era of the modern UFC, before TUF came along. He was certainly a dominant Light Heavyweight champion, grounding and pounding his way to wins over Ken Shamrock, Evan Tanner, Vítor Belfort and Wanderlei Silva. Between 2000 and 2003 he was the king at the top of the UFC’s Light Heavyweight mountain.
David(8): Think about Cain. Who has he lost to? His first loss he’s avenged not once but twice. He’s dominated the lean and pray, and is still a scary man. I can’t see him not getting a good bit of love going forward.
Joao(6): Cain’s wrestling background, tenacity and raw power quickly saw him rise through the ranks of the heavyweight division. Training at AKA he was able to immensely develop his striking game and eventually conquer the Heavyweight title at UFC 121, when he absolutely destroyed Brock Lesnar. Cain’s battles with Junior dos Santos have been remarkable and Velasquez is still one of the division’s top contenders.
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