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The Top 11 UK MMA Competitors Ever

This weekend’s UFC return to London will feature some of the top British MMA competitors. The UK, a proud fighting nation. Has always produced a large number of outstanding competitors who have had a significant impact on the MMA community.

Here are the top 11 UK MMA competitors of all time.

Molly McCann

Molly McCann of Liverpool, who has seven victories in the UFC and is currently in the height of her career, is poised to surpass all previous female fighters from Britain. “Meatball” first gained notoriety in the UK-based Cage Warriors organisation in 2018, when she won the women’s flyweight title there.

With that victory, McCann was admitted to the UFC, where she has amassed a respectable 7-3 record. She has recently won two straight fights. The most recent of which she defeated Luana Carolina at UFC London in March of this year with a sensational spinning back elbow KO.

Jimi Manuwa

Although Jimi Manuwa‘s career was marked by a string of defeats, he had an incredible start. The Londoner had such a high knockout rate that it took him until his sixteenth fight, or around seven years into his professional career, to compete over the entire three rounds.

In just his fifth match, “Poster Boy” won the light heavyweight championship of the London-based Ultimate Challenge MMA promotion. He then successfully defended his title five times. He competed in the UFC for seven years, defeating future champions Corey Anderson, Ovince Saint Preux, and Jan Blachowicz.

Paul Craig

Scotland’s Paul Craig, the underdog of the UFC light heavyweight division, has just revived his career and established himself as one of the most dangerous jiu-jitsu experts in MMA.

The “Bear Jew,” who competed in several UK-based promotions, won eight of his first nine fights via submission, including seven in the first round, and in the process took home the FightStar light heavyweight championship.

Craig joined the UFC in 2016, and despite a challenging start, he is currently on a four-fight winning streak that includes victories over Jamahal Hill and Nikita Krylov in the opening round. Amazingly, Craig has just once in his career gone to a decision, and 13 of his 16 victories have been by submission.

Ross Pearson

Ross Pearson, an Englishman from Sunderland, doesn’t have the most impressive MMA resume, but he will always be recognised as one of the best wrestlers to come out of Britain.

The eighth episode of The Ultimate Fighter, which was advertised as the UK vs. the US, was where Pearson first gained widespread attention. Pearson played a crucial role for the British team, defeating Andre Winner in the lightweight championship match.

“The Real Deal” began competing in the UFC in 2009, where he competed for almost ten years and earned major victories over opponents like Gray Maynard and Paul Felder. Pearson would leave the UFC with a record of 12-13-1.

Paul Daley

Paul Daley is among the most productive and gifted MMA fighters to come out of Britain, with a career spanning 18 years, 64 fights, and an astounding 35 knockouts to his credit.

In 2006, the Londoner captured the Cage Rage British welterweight championship. He joined the UFC three years later and won his first two fights by knockout, earning a title eliminator matchup with Josh Koscheck.

Daley would go on to lose the contest in a unanimous decision, but it was what he did after the bell that made headlines and altered the course of his professional life. After the third and final round, “Semtex” came up behind Koscheck and attempted to sucker punch him with a left hook; for this, he was blacklisted from competing in future fights.

Daley finally made it to Strikeforce, where he fell to Nick Diaz in a first-round TKO match for the welterweight championship in 2011. Daley, who is currently 39 years old, competes in Bellator, where he has amassed a 10-5 record since 2012.

Michael Page

Michael Page, one of the most exciting competitors to come out of the UK, has long been a mainstay of Bellator’s welterweight division. Martial arts has been a lifelong passion for “Venom.” The Londoner started training at the age of three, and by the time he was five, he was taking part in his first kickboxing competition.

Following a run of six victories, including one over Douglas Lima, Page made a run for the Bellator interim championship in May but was defeated by Logan Storley in a split decision. 20-2 is the current standing of the 35-year-record, old’s which includes 15 finishes, none more impressive than his flying knee versus Evangelista Santos in 2016. Referee John McCarthy said it was the loudest he had ever heard because of the impact.

Brad Pickett

The ability to wrestle is one area where many feel British MMA competitors fall short. Brad Pickett, an Englishman, is a prominent exception. In his 39 fight career, Pickett, a Londoner, held his own against some of the most seasoned American wrestlers while competing in four weight classes.

In just his fifth mixed martial arts match, “One-Punch” became the featherweight champion of the UK-based Cage Rage promotion. After that, he made his way into the WEC, where he defeated Demetrious Johnson. Who would go on to become one of the best pound-for-pound fighters of all time.

Picket entered the UFC in 2011 and competed 14 fights, with just five victories. But in addition to five performance bonuses, his all-action manner won him many admirers.

Darren Till

Even though Darren Till is now in the worst slump of his career, his achievements make him deserving of a spot on any list of the top British MMA competitors.

It would take Darren Till just over three years to earn a welterweight title fight against the utterly unbeatable Tyron Woodley after making his UFC debut in 2015 at the age of just 22. Till entered the battle as the favourite because of his six-bout winning streak. But “The Gorilla” was stunned by a massive right from Woodley late in round two, and he soon gave way to a D’arce choke.

Till has had trouble regaining the dazzling form that let him win a title shot at such a young age since that defeat. He moved up to middleweight after suffering a devastating knockout loss to Jorge Masvidal, and on his debut.  He beat Kelvin Gastelum. But since then. The 29-year-old has endured even more heartbreak after suffering consecutive defeats at the hands of Robert Whittaker and Derek Brunson.

Dan Hardy

Dan Hardy is best known today for being one of MMA’s most insightful pundits and analysts. But because he was the first British MMA competitors to be given a shot at the UFC championship. He is unquestionably one of the pioneers of British MMA.

The English fighter, who is based in Nottingham, originally gained notoriety in Cage Warriors, where he won the welterweight title in 2005. That year, Hardy competed an incredible nine times in three separate competitions.

Having won eight out of his first nine fights, “The Outlaw” entered the UFC.  In 2008 and defeated Pride veteran Akihiro Gono in his debut. Hardy entered a championship eliminator with Mike Swick and won it after knocking out Rory Markham. In the opening round and winning the decision against Marcus Davis.

This led to a confrontation with the champion Georges St. Pierre. Who was at the time riding a six-fight winning streak. Hardy was defeated by St. Pierre in a unanimous decision. But he received praise for his tough fighting style and for surviving several close calls. Hardy would only engage in combat five more times. Before retiring at the age of 30 in 2012 due to a heart ailment.

Leon Edwards

Leon Edwards is a fighter who has quietly established himself as one of the finest in the UK. He is now in position to become only the second British UFC champion in history.

The 23-year-old English fighter, who fights out of Birmingham, made his UFC debut against Claudio Silva in 2014. But in his subsequent battle, “Rocky” had a stunning comeback, winning by a stunning 8-second knockout.

Edwards quietly and diligently piled up victory after victory for years while receiving little attention. And Leon first gained widespread notice not for his Octagon performances. Rather for being the victim of Jorge Masvidal’s infamous “three-piece and a Coke” backstage at UFC London in 2019.

Little of that incident prevented Edwards from rising to the top of the welterweight class. The 30-year-old has won 10 fights without losing, including victories over Nate Diaz, Vicente Luque, and Rafael dos Anjos. His most recent defeat came at the hands of Kamaru Usman, the opponent he will face for the championship next.

Michael Bisping

Michael Bisping, the all-time top British MMA fighter. Have experienced the most spectacular career twists and turns of any athlete.

“The Count,” a native of Lancashire, initially gained notoriety in Cage Warriors. Where he won the light heavyweight championship in 2005. Before being invited to appear on The Ultimate Fighter’s third season, Bisping successfully defended his title three times. He quickly established himself as one of the program’s most recognisable stars. Thanks to both his fighting prowess and his brazen, trash-talking character.

But Bisping overcame these difficulties to produce one of the most enduring fairy-tale outcomes in UFC history. Luke Rockhold, the middleweight champion, was scheduled to face Chris Weidman again in 2016. Weidman was forced to cancel at the last minute due to an injury.

Bisping entered with 17 days’ notice after being defeated by Rockhold in a submission in 2014. “The Count” defied all expectations and defeated Rockhold in the first round while fighting while mostly blind. To become the first British MMA fighter to win a UFC championship.

Go back to MMA competitors

On August 6, 2013, it was announced that Daley had committed to a 12-month, three-fight deal with BAMMA.  At BAMMA 14 on December 14, he faced Romario Manoel da Silva in his return to the British promotion. After dominating the first round, he knocked out da Silva at 1:42 of the second.

On April 5, 2014, Daley defeated Alexander Surjko by technical knockout after dropping the Russian three times in the third round and prompting referee Joop Ubeda to call time on the contest. The bout took place at Legend 3: Pour Homme in Milan, Italy.











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