In every sport, people love an upset. There is just something so brilliant and unexpected about a person who is expected by everyone to go out there and pick up a win. And in no sport is an underdog story more compelling than in MMA. One vs. one. Now there have been numerous upsets in the UFC in the past few decades, but this article will look at arguably the five biggest, in no particular order.
1. Nate Diaz vs. Conor Mcgregor
This one is very recent, but definitely deserves a spot on the list. Going into this fight, Conor Mcgregor was originally supposed to challenge for the 155 lb title but the champion got injured, so Nate Diaz stepped in to fight Mcgregor at 170 lbs. Everybody (even the oddsmakers) pinned Mcgregor winning this fight. But when push came to shove, they were all wrong as not only didn’t Mcgregor win, but he was forced to tap out to Nate Diaz.
2. Holly Holm vs. Ronda Rousey
Now as someone who has matched hundreds of UFC fights, I don’t think any shocked me as much as this one. Ronda Rousey was on an absolute tear throughout the women’s 135 lb division without anyone offering up her any sort of challenge. Enter, Holly Holm. Immediately from the start of the fight, the difference in striking talent between the two was staggering and Holm made an absolute fool out of Rousey on the feet before knocking her out and shocking the world.
3. TJ Dillashaw vs. Renan Barao
This was basically the story of a man who hadn’t lost in years, who had basically cleaned out a division, fighting a young and hungry challenger. Most (including me) expected Barao to absolutely destroy Dillashaw, but that didn’t happen. Using superior speed and footwork, Dillashaw put a clinic on Barao before eventually finishing him late in the fight.
4. Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Mirko Cro Cop
If the Rousey vs. Holm fight didn’t happen, this would be my most shocking moment in UFC history. Coming into this fight, Gonzaga was nothing but a gatekeeper, which Cro Cop was a UFC newcomer but was well known for his time in Pride. His big weapon was high left high kick, which knocked out many fighters. Well, on this night, Gonzaga used Cro Cops own technique on him and knocked out the heavy favorite with his own signature move.
5. Matt Serra vs. Georges St. Pierre
On paper, this is the biggest upset in UFC history as GSP was thought of as one of the top pound for pound fighters of all time and Serra was fresh off of winning a shot at the title on the Ultimate Fighter TV show. Most thought GSP would destroy the man who was gifted a title shot, but that didn’t happen. The huge underdog went on to win the fight by TKO and his face after the win showed he was just as shocked as everyone else was that he was able to win the fight.