Back in the 1990’s, during the decline of Mike Tyson, fans of physical sporting bouts like boxing were being met with the question, “Will boxing always stand as the premier fighting sport?” It was hard to imagine then, that no boxer would ever reach the height of Mike Tyson’s simple personality and ferocious power. The truth is, boxing faded away and left a hole in the sports world. Professional wrestling could not fill the gap, since the outcomes were predetermined before showcases matches. However, in 1993 the Ultimate Fighting Championship or UFC for short, was spreading in popularity by word of mouth. The company’s promotion of mixed martial arts, and bludgeoning violence lead to a surge in popularity and skepticism by many cautious fans. The UFC that is known today is due in part to the success of Anderson Silva and George St. Pierre.
Anderson Silva was a Brazilian mixed martial fighter who was signed toa in 2006, for a multi-fight contract. In his UFC bouts, Silva was able to create a dominance unseen before in the company’s history. With a record of 33 wins and 7 losses over his entire career, Silva went through 16 straight wins before losing in the UFC.
In that same span of time of Anderson Silva, George St. Pierre was fighting in the welterweight division. With his first fight in UFC, a bout with Karo Parisyan in 2004, George went on to a stunning 20 and 2 record in the UFC. The Canadian was ranked as the top fighter in the world during his second longest combined title streak (2,204), until he vacated the position with his decision to take time off.
The final fighter, to showcase is the current number one fighter in the UFC, Jon Jones. The man is seeking to add more to his immense legend as he comes back from suspension after being charged with a felony hit and run. His reinstatement last October now has fans clamoring to see him back in the octagon. He has already defeated Ovince St. Preux, and is looking towards UFC 200. His career record of 22 wins and 1 loss, and his claim of being the youngest person to win a UFC title at age 23, are already accomplishments that would put him in the likes of Silva and St. Pierre.