5 of the best light heavyweight fights in MMA history

Some of the greatest 205-pound battles inside the cage.

To more casual fans in combat sports, a light heavyweight division can be considered an afterthought when compared to the focus on the heavyweights and the title of the “baddest man on the planet.” But while there is evidence to debate such an argument in the world of boxing, MMA is a much different story.

More or less established in 2001, thanks to the passing of what we know today as the Unified Rules of MMA (the UFC changed its then-middleweight title to the light heavyweight title in that year), the division has played host to some of the more dominant title runs in the sport, such as the reigns of Frank Shamrock, Tito Ortiz, Chuck Liddell and Jon Jones.

Here are five of the greatest light heavyweight battles in MMA history

In addition, the division has also hosted a wide variety of big names and talent in MMA, including Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, Vitor Belfort, Randy Couture, Daniel Cormier, Lyoto Machida,  Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, Ryan Bader, Forrest Griffin and many more — stretching to today’s champions, such as current UFC champ Jan Blachowicz and Bellator champ Vadim Nemkov.

In fact, the light heavyweight divisions of both of those mentioned promotions are in the headlines of late. Blachowicz will make his first title defense very shortly against UFC middleweight champ Israel Adesanya, who’ll be looking for champ-champ status, at the highly-hyped UFC 259. Meanwhile, Nemkov will be defending his title in the Bellator Light Heavyweight Grand Prix — the next Bellator division to host the promotion’s annual tournament.

With the big stars and legends that have played a role in this division, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that it’s led to not only some terrific fights but some of the most prominent bouts in the sport’s history.

Here are five such of those battles.

Published at Mon, 01 Mar 2021 23:57:18 +0000

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