Top 25 Fights in UFC History: #20 “2 Title Fights”

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Each December I count down the top 25 fights in UFC history. With each day of December, I will be revealing the newest fight on the list, with the #1 fight being revealed on Christmas morning. With approximately 550-600 new UFC fights each year, the list will look different than the year before. The criteria for ranking these fights are the amount of action, competitiveness, and significance of the fight (main events/title fights tend to get some extra credit).

So let’s get to the list

List so far

* The list was completed before Camacho/Brown, Medeiros / Oliveira, and Alvarez / Gaethje occurred,  all would have been considered for the list

  • #25 Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira vs Randy Couture
  • #24 Cheick Kongo vs Pat Barry
  • #23 Chris Leben vs Yoshihiro Akiyama
  • #22 Frank Shamrock vs Tito Ortiz
  • #21 Andrei Arlovski vs Travis Browne

 

#20: Frankie Edgar vs Gray Maynard 2 & 3

January 1st, 2011

Main Event of UFC 125

MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas Nevada

AND

October 8th, 2011

Main Event of 136

Toyota Center, Houston, Texas

Background:

Okay, so I cheated. There are more than 25 fights on my list. I simply couldn’t separate these two fights. They go hand and hand, so I am counting it as one.

These two matchups help form one of the most underrated rivalries in UFC history, and two of the best title fights in history.

Gray Maynard one their first matchup three years earlier, giving Edgar his first career loss. They would meet up again while both guys were at their primes, and Edgar was the lightweight champion.

Action:

I am not going bother to recap two fights. Both fights are incredible and fairly similar. To start both fights, Gray Maynard lived up to his “bully” nickname. He comes out of the gate firing. He lands several big shots on Edgar, who is hurt bad, several times. Edgar is dropped multiple times in the first round in both fights and barely survives. However, in both fights, Edgar shows incredible heart, and rallies back. He uses fast in and out movement to set up his own great shots. In the first fight, they both battle back and forth and go to a draw. 10 months later, they battle it out, going shot for shot again, but the champion, Edgar digs deep and is able to rally from behind and knock Maynard out in the 4th fight.

Results and Notes:

If you haven’t seen these fights, go watch them. They are crazy good.

After these fights, Edgar went on to have one to have a fantastic career in both the lightweight and featherweight division. However, this appeared to be the high for Maynard. These wars seemed to have taken a toll on Maynard, who was never a top contender again.

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