2018 was an great year for the sport for MMA. The UFC managed to materialize comebacks for two fan favourites and cash cows in Conor McGregor and Jon Jones.
However it was an eventful year for one of the most enjoyable aspects of MMA as well, the finishes. UFC 224 in May tied the record for the most finishes on a UFC card ever (11) with UFC Fight Night 55 back in 2014.
However rankings of UFC divisions as per finishing percentages are out, and they are astonishing.
The light heavyweight division tops the list with 66%, followed by middleweight (61%), heavyweight (59%), welterweight (57%), lightweight (53%), Women’s featherweight (50%), Men’s Bantamweight (48%), Men’s featherweight (47%), Men’s flyweight (46%), Strawweight (31%), Women’s flyweight (30%), Women’s bantamweight (25%). (via Twitter):
2018 #UFC Finish % by Division, Ranked
66% – Light Heavyweight
61% – Middleweight
59% – Heavyweight
57% – Welterweight
53% – Lightweight
50% – Women's Feather
48% – Men's Bantam
47% – Men's Feather
46% – Men's Fly
31% – Strawweight
30% – Women's Fly
25% – Women's Bantam
— Michael Carroll (@MJCflipdascript) January 9, 2019
The heaviest fighters (heavyweights) usually top the list however 2018 was for light heavyweights. What makes it surprising and even more impressive was the fact that light heavyweight division was considered the steepest division in the UFC. The tables turned however due to interesting additions to the division namely middleweight staple Thiago Santos who got two finishes and former middleweight Anthony Smith who got three and will fight for the title in March.
Also prospects like Dominick Reyes, Jonnie Walker, Khalil Rountree, Ion Cutelaba contributed to the tally. That being said, veterans weren’t left behind as Jan Blachowicz, Ovince Saint Preux, Misha Circunov joined the party as well. With Jon Jones recapturing his throne, the future seems bright for the division.
Another interesting observation being that women’s featherweight division having more finishing rates than men’s featherweight, men’s bantamweight and men’s flyweight. However with less sample space present, played a major role in percentage being that high.
Also another impressive observation being that the lightest female division (strawweight) having a higher percentage than heavier female divisions, flyweight and bantamweight.