10. Ronda Rousey
MMA record: 12-2
Key wins Miesha Tate, Bethe Correia, Cat Zingano, Sara McMann
Titles held: First UFC women’s bantamweight champion, bronze medalist 2008 summer Olympics Judo.
Much like Conor McGregor, Ronda Rousey’s contributions to the sport have earned her top ten billing. She was the first women’s champion in the UFC and the trailblazer for all women we see in the octagon today. She was the Mike Tyson of her era, her fights short and violent and the minute she entered the arena the buzz began and usually ended with her patented armbar submission. Rousey was the first female inductee to the UFC Hall of Fame and should have an entire wing named after her for setting the stage for the excellent female fighters we see today.
9. Conor McGregor
MMA record : 21-4
Key wins: Nate Diaz, Eddie Alvarez, Jose Aldo, Max Holloway, Chad Mendes
Titles Held: UFC featherweight and lightweight championships
McGregor is this high on the list for the simple fact that his brash talking and crossover star power cannot be overlooked. The man is a global phenomenon that truly has brought the UFC to heights never seen before in combat sports. His ring game isn’t bad either. Ending Jose Aldo’s 10-year winning streak and bloody wars with Nate Diaz showed the world the Irishman isn’t all talk. McGregor also held the lightweight and featherweight titles simultaneously for the first time in UFC history. Being only 31 I expect the biggest star in UFC history to continue to cement his legacy and maybe move up this list.
8. Randy Couture
Key wins: Mark Coleman, Tito Ortiz, Gabriel Gonzaga, Chuck Liddell, Vitor Belfort
Titles held: UFC heavyweight champion (2) UFC light heavyweight champion (2)
A dominant Greco Roman wrestler and ground and pounder, Couture dominated the heavyweight and light heavyweight divisions. The former army boxer and sergeant in the 101st airborne division was a born fighter who produced some of the most exciting battles of the era. With wins over Tito Ortiz and Chuck Liddell, Couture was the first multi-division champion in UFC history and was inducted into the hall of fame in 2006.
7. Chuck Liddell
MMA record: 21-8
Key wins: Wanderlei Silva, Tito Ortiz, Randy Couture, Allistair Overeem, Vitor Belfort
Titles Held: UFC light heavyweight champion
Widely credited with helping MMA and the UFC go mainstream, Chuck Liddell is a pioneer of the sport. With wins over many early legends, Liddell lived up to his “Iceman” nickname with his take one to give one style and iron chin. Liddell had an impressive combat sports career well before the UFC going 18-0 as a kickboxer. Liddell was inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame in 2009 and is definitely on the MMA Mount Rushmore.
6. Matt Hughes
MMA record: 45-9
Key wins: Renzo Gracie, BJ Penn, Georges St-Pierre, Royce Gracie, Matt Serra
Titles held: UFC welterweight champion (2) UFC Hall of Famer
Matt Hughes is simply one of the toughest guys to ever grace the octagon. The UFC Hall of Famer had the second most title defenses in welterweight history with seven. Hughes was a excellent amateur wrestler and used his great wrestling skills and excellent stand-up game to wreak havoc in the welterweight division for years. A mixed martial arts legend, Hughes was inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame in May 2010.