There are a number of ways to define success in mixed martial arts.
Wins, money and fame are always going to have their place, but so
will less tangible measurements such as personal growth and state
At their very core, prizefighters are as competitive as they come.
While some might pay lip service to the idea that the
Ultimate Fighting Championship is not the end-all of MMA,
anyone worth his or her salt wants to compete against the very
best. At this point, ownership of a UFC championship belt is a
clear statement that a fighter has reached that summit. Once upon a
time, competing organizations such as
Pride Fighting Championships and Strikeforce
housed titlists who also had a real claim to the title of best in
the world. Today, with a few notable exceptions, that is not the
However, there are fighters with sparkling credentials who for
various reasons have not had a UFC belt around their waist. For
some, their time could be coming. For others, the clock is ticking
rapidly. A panel of Sherdog.com staff voted on its choices for best
fighters never to win UFC gold. The resumes on this list are enough
to make a former UFC champion jealous.
Note: All candidates were selected from MMA’s Modern Era and
must have at least one UFC bout to be eligible for voting.