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Guide to MMA Weight Classes (Part 1 of 2)

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The sport of mixed martial arts has reach great heights since Forrest Griffin and Stephan Bonnar tore down the house at The Ultimate Fighter Finale in 2005. Their 15-minute war propelled the sport to the run it has gone on since and has helped bring MMA around the world to places like Abu Dhabi, Sweden, Japan, and back to Brazil.

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For those that are new to the sport and are just trying to understand it, there a lot of intricacies that will be understood with time, including key terms and the different MMA weight classes. There are many classes for both men and women, but let’s look at the four biggest in the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Heavyweight – As much as 265 lbs.

heavyweight-top-3-fightersThe heavyweight division is the MMA weight class that features the biggest and strongest fighters in the sport. In his short time in the sport, Brock Lesnar turned out to be one of the greatest fighters in history because of his overwhelming strength and size. Currently, Cain Velasquez is the man in the UFC and will put his title on the line against a strong Antonio “Big Foot” Silva at UFC 160.

Light Heavyweight – As much as 205 lbs.

light-heavy-weight-top-3Between 2007 when Quinton Jackson defeated Chuck Liddell to win the UFC light heavyweight title and 2010, the title changed hands five times in seven fights. Only Jackson and Lyoto Machida were able to defend the title, but that has since changed since Jon Jones stepped into the picture. Jones has been the champion for more than 750 days since defeating Mauricio Rua for the belt and has since defeated four other former champions to retain the title. He is scheduled to defend the title against Chael Sonnen at UFC 159.

Middleweight– As much as 185 lbs.

middleweight-top-3The greatest fighter to ever step into an MMA cage is Anderson Silva. Since coming to the UFC, all he has done is dominate every fight he has been in (except the first fight with Sonnen) and has won all 16 fights inside the Octagon. He will next defend the title against upstart Chris Weidman in July, but will have held the title for more than 2,400 days by that fight.

Welterweight– As much as 170 lbs.

welterweight-top-3During the time Silva has dominated the middleweight MMA weight class, Georges St-Pierre has done the same with the welterweight division. The Canadian fighter is 18-2 in his UFC career and is coming off a decisive victory against Nick Diaz at UFC 158. St-Pierre has wins against the greatest welterweights in the sport, including two against Matt Hughes and B.J. Penn, Carlos Condit, Jon Fitch, Matt Serra, and Sean Sherk.

These MMA weight classes feature some of the biggest and strongest fighters in the sport. Fighters can bounce around from division to division like Silva has during his career, but the current UFC is built on fighters stick to one class. These classes feature three of the four pound-for-pound best in the sport with Silva, Jones, and St-Pierre.
MMA Weight Classes (Part 2)


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  1. Guide to MMA Weight Classes (Part 2 of 2) | The MMA Zone Says:

    [...] If you haven’t read the first part of this series you can check it out here: MMA Weight Classes (Part 1 of 2) [...]

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