With the evolution of close-contact sports, wrestling and grappling are now an essential part of mixed martial arts. Although jiu-jitsu fighters dominated the UFC during the early days, the trend evolved over time with fighters experimenting with other conventional styles. Grappling and wrestling are probably two of the most boring fighting styles to watch inside the octagon. However, they are quite effective in getting the opponent to tap out.
So effective in fact that most of the top UFC fighters today are wrestlers. In this list, we analyze the best wrestlers in MMA. So, follow this space for more MMA betting content.
Top 5 Wrestlers in UFC Today
- Khabib Nurmagomedov – Perhaps one of the most recognizable names in UFC today, Khabib is unlike any lightweight wrestler before him to take the title. A master of Sambo and pankration, this young Russian is a ghoulish adversary in close-quarter combat.
Inside the cage, Khabib’s sole intention is to push the opponent to the fence before forcing them in submission. This unique style is yet to be countered. With some of the best takedowns in the history of MMA, Khabib remains undefeated with a score of 22-0.
- Georges St-Peter – A legend in the UFC circuit, GSP was a force to reckon with inside the cage. Having taken down every major fighter at the time, including Johny Hendricks, who incidentally is the only man to defeat him inside the ring, “Rush” was an innovative wrestler in UFC.
Owing to his injuries sustained in combat with Hendricks, GSP retired from MMA indefinitely. His intentions of ever returning to the sport are currently unknown.
- Randy Couture – Randy “The Natural” Couture entered MMA at 34-years of age and got the nickname since he proved to be a natural fighter. Proficient in three styles of wrestling, including Greco-Roman and freestyle, the term “dirty boxing” was coined with him in mind.
Known for being able to close the distance between the opponent, it was his Greco-Roman style that helped in most bouts. Randy Couture retired from MMA following his second-round knockout defeat against Lyoto Machida.
- Daniel Cormier – With a record of just two losses throughout his career, Daniel Cormier is headed into retirement. One of the primary reasons behind his successful stint in the UFC is his wrestling background. Grappling was always one of Cormier’s favourite tactics inside the octagon. It’s also what made him a fearful opponent.
With his level of dominance inside the ring, it was difficult to take Cormier down in a lock. He is an immensely skilled wrestler who uses his striking power just as effectively to strike back at opponents.
- Jon Jones – The UFC Light Heavyweight Champion is a man of many talents. Suffering a single loss in his entire career, courtesy of being disqualified, Jon Jones has an almost spotless record.
Despite being accused and later charged with having used Performance Enhancing Drugs inside the ring, his achievements are quite remarkable. Jones is the only person other than Stipe Miocic to have ever defeated Damier Cormier inside the cage.