The Big Five
Though MMA fans have probably argued about this topic for years now, we think we’ve finally narrowed down MMA’s very best events to a top five. MMA (mixed martial arts) is made up of a number of different fighting styles that have been blended together in perfect harmony to create a fighting style that is unlike any other. MMA has been around, officially, since 1993. That’s a lot of years of incredible fights between insanely talented fighters to choose from! But we managed. So we present, for your entertainment, our list of the top five best MMA fights of all time. Enjoy!
5. Jon Jones vs Alexander Gustaffson (First fight) 2013
There has been much argument about this fight over the years and many people remain firmly divided on who SHOULD have won. This fight took place as the main event of UFC 165 back in 2013 and has tongues wagging almost 10 years later. Alexander Gustaffson and Jon Jones faced off in an incredible match that brought two of the greatest fighters UFC has ever seen to the edge of their capabilities. In the first three rounds, Gusaffson seems to have the upper hand, and Jones just can’t manage to bring him down. Punches seemed to have no effect, and his strategy seemed to be failing him. It was that fateful, spinning elbow at the end of the fourth round that changed the course of the match entirely. If that round had lasted just a few minutes longer, Jones might have been able to overpower Gustaffson completely. As it was, in the fifth round, Jones let Gustafsson have it; he really gave it everything he had. Unfortunately for Jones, everything he had just wasn’t enough to bring Gustafsson down. While many fans argue that this win by decision was a robbery, we believe that Jones deserved that win.
4. Mark Hunt vs Antonio Silva (first fight) 2013
This is a fight that, were UFC regulations not in place, would have killed both men for sure. Mark Hunt and Antonio “BigFoot” Da Silva faced off for the first time in December 2013 and it remains to this day one of the most intense and brutal MMA fights we’ve ever seen. While there have been bloodier battles (only slightly), it’s a rare thing to see two beasts of men, so well trained, leave absolutely everything they have on the floor of the octagon. Hunt went into the match as the fan-favorite, but it became clear to fans during the first two rounds that their champion might not be as up to it as they thought. Those first two rounds awakened the sleeping beast in Hunt and he came back at Silva with the force of Godzilla vs King Kong. Every blow was life or death, and fans all over the world watched white-knuckled until Silva’s swing towards victory in the fourth round.
3. Matt Hughes vs Frank Trigg (second fight) 2005
If this fight had been a movie, it couldn’t have been more dramatic. This rematch between Frank Twigg and Matt Hughes was the perfect collision between the classic hero and villain. You could tell from the face-off that “Twinkle Toes” Trigg was itching to lay into Hughes. The bad blood between these two fighters flowed deep and it made for an electric atmosphere to be sure. While it initially seemed that Trigg would get the upper hand by nefarious means, the hero triumphed in the end, as all good heroes do, by carrying Trig clear across the octagon and hurling him to the mat.
2. Robbie Lawler vs Rory MacDonald (second fight) 2015
Each round of this match was as different as night from day. Lawler took control early in round two, his direct left almost destroying MacDonald completely. Close to the end of the third round is when things shifted again when MacDonald leveled a flurry of kicks and punches at Lawler that almost proved to be his undoing. Lawler managed to stand his ground and the bloody trade-off continued. Broken nose, a profusely bleeding lip, things looked gory. It was the fifth round that saw Lawler come out with guns blazing as he realized he might be about to lose his title. MacDonald collapsed after an incredible match.
1. Forrest Griffin vs Stephan Bonnar 2005
At last, we reach our number one spot. A lot of this fight came down to the history of the clash, rather than the quality of the actual fight, but the quality of the fight was nothing to sniff at. This clash between Griffin and Bonnas was for a massive prize: a six-figure contract. Those three rounds of fighting were the best that most fans had ever seen. In the end. Though Griffin won the match, both men would go on to receive the six-figure contracts of their dreams with the UFC.
Well, there you have our roundup of the best of the best MMA fights! Did your favorite fight make the cut?