Monday, September 26, 2022

Dana White Names His Top 5 UFC Fighters Of All Time

UFC President Dana White has named his picks for the top five fighters in UFC history, and there’s one notable absence…

Having played a major role in developing the MMA leader since being installed as president following the Fertitta brothers’ acquisition of the promotion in 2001, White has just about seen it all inside the Octagon.

And given that he’s witnessed belts change hands, greats rise to prominence before retiring or falling away, and prospects developing from unknown names to stars of the sport, White is seemingly well placed to assess the often-debated GOAT discussion.

During a recent Q&A video on the GQ Sports YouTube channel, White was asked to name which fighters make his list for the five best UFC athletes of all time. While he included a few figures synonymous with the GOAT debate, some more surprising picks also popped up.

Jon Jones, Anderson Silva, Ronda Rousey, Conor McGregor, GSP,” White said. “There’s so many other people that should be on there — Usman should be on there… Whatever you think about Jon, it’s hard not to call him the GOAT.”

While Jones, a former two-time light heavyweight champion, appears prominently in many discourses surrounding the all-time greats, those who consider outside-the-cage actions often suggest that Jones’ arrests and suspensions eliminate him from contention.

Daniel Cormier, Dana White, Jon Jones
Image Credit: John Locher/Associated Press

Alongside “Bones,” White listed Silva and Georges St-Pierre — two names who tend to appear for the majority of fans and pundits, often swapping places at the top from person to person.

While McGregor has seen his form dip in recent years, and falls into the same category as Jones when it comes to antics beyond the steel confines of the Octagon, he did etch his name in history as the UFC’s first-ever simultaneous two-division champion. That, coupled with the part that the Irishman played in growing the organization as a whole, makes it unsurprising to see him towards the top of White’s list.

Perhaps the biggest debate would surround the inclusion of former UFC women’s bantamweight queen Ronda Rousey. Whilst “Rowdy” was regarded as invincible at the time of her reign, it appears to have lost its shine as time has moved on — and as women’s MMA has continued its fast growth.

Recently, renowned journalist Ariel Helwani named Rousey as the “most overrated fighter” of all time, citing those who claimed she could give Floyd Mayweather a run for his money as evidence. Given that White made such a statement, he clearly held her in high regard, and still does judging by her place on his list.

Do you agree with Dana White’s top five?

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