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Ufc Wrestling Watch Wrestling VideoUFC 9 Free Fight: Mark Schultz vs Gary Goodridge (1996) UFC Vegas Fighters You Should Know Jamahal Hill is a Lion in the Doghouse Jamahal Hill is more than ready to test himself against Ovince Saint Preux at UFC Fight Night: Hermansson vs Vettori. Elite Middleweight Puts It All On The Line At UFC Vegas 16 In His Quest To Be The Best. Athletes. 4 days ago. Marvin Vettori Keeps Betting on Himself Middleweight Steps In On Short Notice For Massive Main Event Opportunity Saturday At UFC Vegas Read the story Athletes. 2 days ago. UFC Vegas Fighters You Should Know. 1/8/ · Lesnar was already a star in WWE wrestling, and his move to the UFC generated a lot of hype. Despite losing his debut fight in , Lesnar won his next match and earned a shot at the heavyweight title. Lesnar beat Couture via TKO in the second round and just like that, Couture had lost the belt for the third and final time.
Liddell successfully defended his title four times between and , including in rematches against Couture and Ortiz.
He finally lost his title to Quinton Jackson in , who held onto the title for one year. In the next 2 years, the light heavyweight title changed owner no fewer than 5 times, with a competitive division which no one athlete could truly dominate.
Jones became a sensation, the biggest American star of the UFC and earned an international sponsorship deal with Nike.
A big favorite with fans, Jones utilizes devastating and physically impressive offensive moves, like spinning kicks.
Despite his at times unorthodox striking, Jones is also an extremely competent wrestler and a versatile fighter. However, soon after the fight Jones tested positive for cocaine before being arrested for an alleged hit and run incident in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Cormier submitted Johnson in the third round to become the new light heavyweight champion — the first new champion in four years. Cormier successfully defended his belt twice, first against Alexander Gustafsson and then in a rematch against Johnson.
Meanwhile, Jones returned from suspension and defeated Ovince Saint Preux in for an interim title, before receiving a second suspension for doping violations.
Finally, he returned again to face Cormier in a grudge match for the title in at UFC After a close fight, Jones connected with a high kick to the head in the third round, leading to a TKO victory.
However, Jones again failed a doping test, testing positive for an anabolic steroid, and once again his title was stripped.
Jones was faced with yet another suspension. Meanwhile, Cormier was declared the light heavyweight champion, but opted not to defend his belt and instead moving back to the heavyweight division.
Finally, after another year of suspension, Jones returned to regain his vacant light heavyweight title again, defeating Gustafsson in a TKO.
Jones has since defended his title four times once against Gustafsson earning for himself a record for the most wins in UFC title fight history. Heavy strikers are the order of the day in the light heavyweight class.
However, when we analyze the most dominant athlete in the history of the class, Jon Jones, it is clear that a varied skill-set is still necessary to thrive in the division.
Jones has devastating power, but is also an extremely awkward fighter and capable of winning fights both via submission and points.
There is also, perhaps surprisingly, room for different body shapes in the division. Nevertheless, the fights between the two were by no means walk-overs, as Cormier found ways to affect Jones, even if he could not emerge victorious.
While bad for competitiveness, there are still prop bets available to make money from dominant athletes. For example, many sportsbooks will allow you to bet on the number of successful titles defenses over time or how a specific fight will be decided.
The middleweight division is home to Anderson Silva, holder of the longest run as a champion in any class and widely regarded as one of the best strikers of all time.
Although heavy striking is common, wrestling skills remain extremely important in the middleweight class. The middleweight title had a somewhat stilted beginning due to a high turnover of middleweight fighters in the UFC.
The first title was won by Dave Menne in , but he lost the title almost immediately to Murilo Bustamante. The Brazilian Bustamante successfully defended his title against Matt Lindland, before leaving the UFC in to sign for a competitor.
This left the middleweight title vacant for a couple of years, before wrestling specialist Evan Tanner won the vacant title at UFC 51 in Tanner defended his title against Rich Franklin in the same year.
In a back and forth fight the challenger gradually inflicted so much damage to the face of Tanner that the fight was stopped by the ringside doctor.
Silva was an up-and-coming star in UFC who was developing a reputation as a fearsome and accurate striker. That was the start of the longest reign of a champion in UFC history.
In total Silva successfully defended his belt ten times between and , leading many to consider him the greatest fighter the UFC has ever seen.
However, Silva was also a talented wrestler, successfully defending himself when opponents forced the fight to the mat and winning a number of fights via submission, as well as TKO.
In a title defense at UFC , Chris Sonnen was widely considered to be leading the fight with two minutes to go of the final round, when Silva managed to lock up an armbar and force Sonnen to submit.
In his eleventh title defense, Silva faced Chris Weidman as a big favorite. Silva again began the fight with some showboating, dropping his hands and goading Weidman.
As he attempted his customary dodging, however, Weidman connected with a left hook just as Silva was weaving his head.
Silva was knocked out in possibly the most shocking moment in UFC history, and Weidman was the new middleweight champion.
Silva was given the chance to immediately regain his title at UFC In the second round, Anderson looked to connect with a low kick, which had been an effective weapon throughout both fights.
The referee immediately stopped the fight, and with two of the most dramatic victories UFC has ever seen, Weidman remained the middleweight champion.
Silva never truly recovered, and after testing positive for illegal substances he would go on to only ever officially win one more UFC fight.
In total, Weidman successfully defended the title three times in almost three years, as injuries hampered both he and the main contenders.
Weidman eventually lost his title in an epic fight against Luke Rockhold, who in turn immediately lost to Michael Bisping in a big upset.
Bisping successfully defended his title once before being scheduled to fight the returning welterweight superstar Georges St-Pierre.
In a close and bloody fight, St-Pierre gained the upper hand after connecting with a left hook in the third round and wrapping up Bisping with a rear-naked chokehold when he fell to the canvas.
Soon after becoming only the fourth UFC athlete at the time to hold titles at two separate weight classes, St-Pierre decided to retire from the sport due to recurring injuries and advancing age.
Meanwhile, Robert Whittaker of New Zealand defeated Yoel Romero for an interim middleweight title, expecting to fight for the unified title against the winner of St-Pierre and Bisping.
When St-Pierre announced he was vacating the middleweight title in December , Whittaker became the undisputed middleweight champion. Middleweight fights see the balance tip more towards boxing and striking, and slightly away from wrestling.
Wrestling is still important, however, and many fighters have found success in the division by focusing on technical ground skills.
The power of the fighters tends to make for some particularly brutal fights, with early stoppages always a distinct possibility. When the middleweight division pairs two fighters who rely on striking as their main method of attack, you can anticipate a fight to end early.
Fighters moving up to middleweight are likely to try to win via submission or wrestling, as they may not have the power to knock out the naturally heavier man.
On the flip side, those moving down from light heavyweight will hope to overpower naturally smaller opponents with their superior striking.
Although he went into his fight against Weidman as a big favorite, Silva had been rattled in recent matches and was becoming reckless with his showboating.
Anyone who looked beyond the headline of ten consecutive title defenses may well have predicted the outcome.
Welterweight fighters are more powerful, but still mobile enough to be very effective wrestlers. The welterweight title is one of the oldest in UFC, with Pat Miletich becoming the first champion in He held the title for three years and defended it four times, before eventually being submitted by the Caribbean Carlos Newton.
Unfortunately for Newton, the ref only noticed that he was out cold, awarding the fight to Hughes. Hughes began a long career as welterweight champion, dominating the division and successfully defending his belt five times.
Hughes eventually lost his title to BJ Penn, but the Hawaiian fighter immediately ran into contract issues with UFC, and his title was stripped before he could even defend it.
Hughes soon regained the vacant title, defeating the younger challenger Georges St-Pierre via armbar.
Hughes defended his title against Frank Trigg with an impressive comeback victory, and defeated a number of other welterweight challengers in non-title fights.
In an epic encounter, Penn looked to have an early advantage only for injuries to take their toll by the third round.
Hughes gained control of the fight, raining down punches while trapping Penn underneath his body. He ultimately won the fight via TKO. St-Pierre stumbled at his first attempt to defend the belt.
Serra was plagued by back injuries in the coming year, allowing St-Pierre to capture an interim Welterweight title and set up a unification match at UFC Unlike the brawl-heavy first fight between the two, St-Pierre was able to control a more technical encounter.
Upon regaining the welterweight title, Georges St-Pierre began one of the longest champion streaks UFC history, defeating a host of skilled challengers between The run was not without controversy, including allegations of using petroleum to grease his body in a title defense against BJ Penn.
In , after controversially being awarded a victory against Johnny Hendricks in his last title defense, St-Pierre decided to step away from UFC, vacating his welterweight title.
Hendricks defeated Robbie Lawler for the vacant title, before losing the rematch and relinquishing the belt via split decision.
After a nine-fight winning streak, Usman squared off against then, champion Tyron Woodly, on march 2nd, winning the title.
Usman has since defended his title just once against Colby Covington, but is expected to have another match soon. At the welterweight class we start to see the true power of the fighters come to the fore.
Watching a welterweight fight, you are equally as likely to see bodyslams and seriously damaging punches and kicks as proficient wrestling.
The division has also historically been one of the deepest, with many of the most talented fighters in UFC history fighting in it — making the dominance of Georges St-Pierre even more impressive.
The welterweight division offers a wide diversity of fighting styles so there are lots of interesting matchups to bet on.
Another lesson from the history of the welterweight division is in the importance of Injuries and other pre-fight issues. It may sound obvious, but if a fighter has been struggling in the build-up, it can play a crucial role in how fights play out.
For example, after St-Pierre won the title for the first time, he immediately lost it in a shock fight against Matt Serra, who was a huge underdog with the sportsbooks.
While Conor McGregor seemed invincible in the featherweight division, he definitely struggled when moving up to lightweight and beyond.
Lightweight fighters are still light enough to display genuine speed, but have enough power and weight to throw devastating blows. You can throw in the durability to withstand some very heavy hits too.
Unlike many weight classes, the lightweight division has not really been dominated by any one fighter for an extended period of time.
It has however been the host of some of the most dramatic moments in UFC — both in and out of the ring.
External problems, like contracts and drug testing affected the UFC lightweight division in the early years. The first lightweight champion was Jen Pulver, winning the inaugural title against the Caol Uno from Japan in He successfully defended his title twice in the coming years, first against Dennis Hallman and then in an epic encounter against the iconic BJ Penn.
However, Pulver soon left the UFC, abandoning his lightweight title. A tournament aimed to crown a new lightweight champion, but the results were inconclusive.
In the end, the lightweight title remained vacant until when Sean Sherk defeated Kenny Florian by unanimous decision to win the title.
After one title defence, Sherk tested positive for anabolic steroid use. Penn won the fight via submission in the second round, becoming the new featherweight champion.
Penn began a two-year reign as champion, successfully defending his belt three times and even taking a shot at the welterweight title in between.
Penn was at times a controversial competitor, cultivating a persona as a dangerous and bloodthirsty fighter.
Each of his title defences resulted in decisive wins, earning Penn a reputation as one of the most respected fighters in UFC.
He eventually lost his title in controversial fashion to Frankie Edgar, who won via unanimous decision despite many thinking Penn deserved to win.
Penn earned an immediate re-match, which he also lost. Henderson also won a re-match, and became the third featherweight champion to defend his belt three times before Anthony Pettis defeated him with a first round submission at UFC in Injury troubles plagued dos Anjos, and he eventually lost his belt to Eddie Alvarez.
Meanwhile, Conor McGregor had moved up to the lightweight division after remaining undefeated in the featherweight class. Nate Diaz stepped in as a last minute replacement, but due to issues making the weight at short notice, the fight went ahead at lb — a two-weight class jump by McGregor.
Despite being a big favorite, McGregor lost the fight at the unfamiliar class. It was his first loss in UFC history. McGregor won via majority decision, setting up another shot at the lightweight title, now held by Alvarez.
McGregor beat Alvarez in the second round by TKO with a dominant display of striking, in the process becoming the first UFC athlete in history to hold the title in two different weight classes simultaneously.
A number of fighters were scheduled to fight Khabib Nurmagomedov for the vacant title, including Max Holloway and Tony Ferguson, who both eventually had to withdraw due to injury and weight cutting issues.
In the run-up to UFC McGregor threw a handrail at a bus containing several fighters, including Nurmagomedov who McGregor had an on-running feud with.
Several fighters incurred injuries from the smashed bus, leading to various fights being rescheduled. McGregor was arrested and eventually charged with assault and criminal mischief.
All of this conveniently provided a lot of publicity for UFC , where Nurmagomedov was due to defend his title against the returning McGregor.
The occasion became the new record pay-per-view MMA event. Nurmagomedov eventually caused McGregor to submit in the fourth round with yet another impressive display.
Since then Numagomedov faced off against Poirier at UFC resulting in another successfully defended title.
The defending champion, Khabib Nurmagomedov, is a highly technical fighter, combining Soviet sambo with judo and other wrestling techniques to wear down opponents.
The body shapes of lightweight fighters allow for this range of fighting options, with power and technique roughly of equal importance.
In the case of Nurmagomedov, who is unbeaten in the UFC, the longer his fights go on the more likely he is to emerge victorious, due to his awkward and technically superior wrestling.
On the other side, if he were to lose a match it would likely be due to taking an early punch by a hard hitter, rather than being out-wrestled.
Another good lesson we can see from the history of the lightweight division is to pay close attention to athletes moving weight categories.
Conor McGregor dominated the flyweight class due in large part to the power of his punches, especially his left hand. There was a lot of value to found for anyone betting against the public on that occasion.
Featherweight has been a popular category in the UFC. Not only is it the original home of probably the biggest international superstar UFC ever produced in Conor McGregor, but it also holds the most dominant current female champion in Amanda Nunes.
Although the most recognizable name to emerge from the featherweight division is undoubtedly the Conor McGregor, the division was in fact dominated for years by one of his opponents, and one of the best pound for pound fighters ever to fight in UFC.
Of his seven defenses, Aldo won by unanimous decision five times, underlining his technical superiority over every other fighter in the division.
However, a month before the fight Aldo was forced to withdraw due to a rib injury. With a hastily re-shuffled schedule, McGregor instead fought Chad Mendes for the interim featherweight title.
Conor McGregor had been steadily making a name for himself as one of the hardest punchers in the game. Of his 6 UFC wins at that point, only one had gone the distance.
As the second round wore on, however, Mendes was visibly breathing a lot more heavily. With mere seconds left in the round, McGregor connected with a jab combination, and continued to connect with Mendes on the ground, causing the referee to stop the match.
That result catapulted McGregor even further towards stardom and, thanks in no small part to his trash talking and promotional skills, the unification fight with Aldo became even more hotly anticipated.
McGregor spent much of the build-up to the fight taunting Aldo, which many people suggested laid the groundwork for what finally transpired at UFC Clearly disorientated, Aldo sustained two more hammer blows on the ground before the referee called the fight.
McGregor had been by far the biggest draw in the featherweight division for a number of years, so when he decided to move up the weight classes after he became featherweight champion, he brought a lot of the media attention with him.
He remained featherweight champion for two years, without actually defending his title. He won the fight with a unanimous decision using a combination of low kicks and out striking his opponent.
In a controversial fight, in which de Randamie threw some punches after the bell which hurt Holm, de Randamie was declared the winner by unanimous decision.
Instead, Cyborg faced Tonya Evinger for the vacant title, knocking her out in the third round. Cyborg defended her title twice in the following year, first defeating Holly Holm by unanimous decision and then knocking out Yana Kunitskaya.
At UFC , Cybord defended her title against Amanda Nunes, who was moving up from bantamweight to challenge for the belt. In an extremely dominant display of powerful punching, Nunes knocked Cyborg out in 51 seconds, becoming the first woman to hold titles at two different weight classes simultaneously.
Featherweight fighters are light enough to have good agility and the ability to move for multiple rounds, while also heavy enough to regularly stop fights with punching power.
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