We have seen a number of MMA fighters, particularly from the UFC, switch to the world of professional wrestling in recent years. A prime example is Sean O’Haire who began his humble fighting career in MMA but ultimately found his calling/fame in pro wrestling. Clearly, some of the skills demonstrated inside the Octagon can be easily transferred across to a wrestling ring and this is why so many fighters opportunistically take the switch.
Here are three UFC fighters who could be very successful in wrestling one day. It may not be long before we see them take it up!
UFC featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski has a background in wrestling: the Australian was an amateur wrestler long before he decided to concentrate on a professional career as an MMA fighter.
The career path Volkanovski eventually settled on has worked out well for him as he has reached the top of his division in the UFC, having won his title in December 2019 when he beat Max Holloway. The Great, as he is nicknamed, has made two successful defenses of his belt since then.
Volkanovski is set to headline UFC 273 later this year and is currently priced at odds of -620 to defeat Chan Sung Jung at the event. The 33-year-old has a professional record in MMA of 23-1 heading into his latest assignment and the odds appear to be in his favor for the foreseeable future. However, promisingly, we all know that once he decides his career in the Octagon is over, Volkanovski would be a great asset in pro wrestling. It’ll be interesting to see when/if Volkanovski begins to consider the alternate pathways ahead.
Nobody in UFC history has had more submission wins than Brazilian fighter Charles Oliveira: so far, he has had a staggering 18 victories across the lightweight, featherweight, and catchweight divisions.
The world over, Oliveira is renowned as the master of the chokehold. Perhaps fatefully, this is a position many wrestlers have used within the ring. There’s a future for Oliveira, nicknamed do Bronx, in the wrestling arenas if he wants it. After all, the UFC lightweight champion already has the moves and throughout his career, many of his opponents have fallen victim to the aggressive power of his chokehold implementation.
The 32-year-old is a Brazilian jiu-jitsu practitioner and is currently fifth on the UFC pound-for-pound list. It remains to be seen how much longer he will remain in the UFC as the man, who is on a 10-fight winning streak, has been linked with various other sports such as boxing.
Oliveira is a great personality in UFC and if the opportunity to have a go at wrestling was given to him, he would most likely make a big success of it.
The most powerful man in the UFC today is Francis Ngannou. The heavyweight champion won six consecutive fights by KO or TKO between 2018 and 2021. In the latter of those wins, he stopped Stipe Miocic in the second round to win the title.
Ngannou has since defended his championship, with victory coming over Ciryl Gane following five rounds. It was another impressive performance for the Predator, beating one of the biggest rivals in his division.
Given his style of fighting, Ngannou is now one of the most popular fighters in the UFC. He has been linked with a fight against the likes of Tyson Fury and Brock Lesner. If he decides to pursue the latter, it could come in a wrestling ring at some point on a pay-per-view event in the WWE.
All three of the above men have exciting futures, whether that is in the UFC or in new challenges. They are all extremely talented and would be huge additions to the wrestling circuit.