The Best MMA Fighters By Weight Class

Take a look at the best MMA fighters by weight class in the UFC, from flyweight all the way up to the big boys at heavyweight.

best mma fighters conor mcgregor

Image via Getty/Jeff Bottar

best mma fighters conor mcgregor

It’s an interesting time for the UFC. Fresh off a $4.2 billion sale to WME, the promotion boasts the best mixed martial arts fighters in the world, has held events in 15 countries, and regularly hands out six-figure purses to its competitors. In short, president Dana White’s organization has come a long way from the days of battling politicians and cable companies in the ‘90s.

For an idea of just how big the sport has become, Michael Bisping’s defeat of Anderson Silva at Fight Night 84 in London, was the top trending sporting event in the UK that day, ahead of the English Premier League and Six Nations Rugby championship. Of note, champion Bisping preceded the fight by telling Silva, “All the needles in your ass, all the steroids will not help you, you pussy.” So, it was basically must-watch TV.

But as the UFC soars to unprecedented popularity, several of the biggest stars who got it there are nowhere to be seen. Conor McGregor has seemingly exhausted the UFC’s supply of suitable opponents for him, opting instead to take up boxing Floyd Mayweather, Jr. (for a reported $75 million payout). Ronda Rousey may never fight again. Jon Jones just completed a lengthy suspension. Anderson Silva is past his prime. Nate Diaz’s return has not been confirmed, and Brock Lesnar has retired for a second time.

All of this, however, is probably welcome news to Dana White. UFC’s dominance over the MMA scene has made it a magnet for fighting talent, including the next generation of its greatest stars, many nurtured through the reality TV series The Ultimate Fighter, whose winner earns a coveted UFC contract. In short, for every McGregor or Diaz who rises to fame, there are dozens more Cody Garbrandts and Tyron Woodleys looking to step up and take their place.

Lets take a look at the best MMA fighters by weight class in the UFC, from flyweight all the way up to the big boys at heavyweight.

Flyweight: Demetrious Johnson

best mma fighters demetrious johnson

Bantamweight: Cody Garbrandt

best mma fighters cody garbrandt

Bantamweight: Dominick Cruz

best mma fighters dominick cruz

Featherweight: Max Holloway

best mma fighters max holloway

Lightweight: Conor McGregor

best mma fighters conor mcgregor

Welterweight: Tyron Woodley

best mma fighters tyron woodley

Middleweight: Michael Bisping

best mma fighters michael bisping

Light Heavyweight: Daniel Cormier

best mma fighters daniel cormier

An accomplished wrestler prior to starting his MMA career, Daniel Cormier’s takedown-focused style is somewhat unique as far as UFC fighters go. After suffering his first pro loss to Jon Jones in his first championship bout, Cormier became UFC light heavyweight champ by forcing a submission from Anthony Johnson at UFC 187. Perhaps more importantly, Cormier made his film debut in the 2014 film Mantervention, which, according to Wikipedia, centers around “a heartbroken college student who can't seem to break an endless cycle of crying and masturbation.”

Jon Jones—who has never truly lost a fight in his career—gets an honorable mention here, but Cormier deserves the honors until Jones returns from his suspension.

Heavyweight: Stipe Miocic

best mma fighters stipe miocic

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