As the majority of the world practices social distancing to halt the spread of COVID-19, many people are left yearning for sports. The majority of professional sports organizations have suspended their seasons and activities to protect both the public and the players from COVID-19 contamination. One of the leading sports organizations who is fighting to organize a live event behind closed doors in the month of April is the UFC. As of now, the UFC plans to go ahead with UFC 249 that is slated to take place on April 18, 2020. While we wait in anticipation for the confirmation of the event, let’s look at some of the best UFC events from 2015 to revisit and watch!
UFC 184: Rousey vs Zingano — February 28, 2015
Ronda Rousey put women’s mixed martial arts on the center stage during her run as a dominant champion. The former UFC Bantamweight Champion successfully defended her title six times before losing to Holly Holm in 2015. UFC 184 highlights one of Rousey’s signature fast finishes and includes several other finishes delivered by Tim Means, Derrick Lewis and Tony Ferguson. The event had six total bout changes and on paper lacked prime MMA talent. However, what the event lacked in star power was undoubtedly made up in impressive finishes, including a variety of knockouts and submission wins.
UFC 184 delivered seven total finishes that included a 14-second submission victory for Ronda Rousey at the expense of Cat Zingano. Fan favorites such as Tony Ferguson and Derrick Lewis were also featured on the card and delivered memorable finishes as they continued to build their MMA resumes. If you are a fan of Ronda Rousey and finishes, look no further!
UFC 185: Pettis vs dos Anjos — March 14, 2015
UFC 185 delivered two title changes and seven finishes in a row throughout the entire preliminary card. The event also marked the beginning of a dominant title reign for Joanna Jedrzejczyk. The preliminary card of the event delivered several fantastic finishes courtesy of fan favorites such as Ross Pearson, Beneil Dariush and Elias Theodorou. After an action-packed preliminary card, the main event fighters took to the Octagon and boy did they deliver.
Polish striking phenom Jedrzejczyk blasted through Carla Esparza and became the new UFC Women’s Flyweight Champion. This marked the beginning of the new champion’s title reign and eventually five consecutive title defenses. In addition, Rafael dos Anjos made his mark in MMA history by dethroning surging champion Anthony Pettis in a dominant performance that resulted in a 50-45 unanimous decision win for the Brazilian challenger. 185 was one of those rare cards that had a pleasant mix of upsets and notable finishes to keep fans engaged and yearning for more.
UFC on Fox: Machida vs Rockhold — April 18, 2015
UFC on Fox: Machida vs Rockhold was crucial in developing several fighters into top stars. The event featured a fairly healthy mix of current top stars and up and coming talent. The preliminary card delivered several exciting finishes including a submission victory by Aljamain Sterling and a knockout victory for Ovince St. Preux.
The main card saw the transition of Max Holloway from a developing young gun to top ten UFC featherweight contender after he submitted Cub Swanson in the third round. The main event further cemented Luke Rockhold as the top candidate to challenge Chris Weidman for middleweight supremacy. Rockhold dominated fellow middleweight veteran and former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Lyoto Machida with his obvious strength advantage and smothering top game. Both Holloway and Rockhold went on to become champions in their respective weight classes.
UFC Fight Night: Boetsch vs Henderson — June 6, 2015
Its not often a UFC card delivers ten finishes on a single night of fights. It’s even less common that ten of those finishes come in the first round! UFC Fight Night: Boetsch vs Henderson was by far one of the most fun and entertaining UFC cards of the year. Exciting fighters including Brian Ortega, Dustin Poirier and Ben Rothwell all delivered memorable performances for the New Orleans crowd.
Perhaps the most memorable moment of the night included a 28-second knockout victory that displayed Dan Henderson’s raw power still intact. Henderson blasted fellow middleweight Tim Boetsch in less than 30 seconds and earned his 15th knockout victory to date. If you are in the mood for a card that is defined by finishes, UFC Fight Night: Boetsch vs Henderson is an absolute must-watch.
UFC 189: Mendes vs McGregor — July 11, 2015
UFC 189 remains one of the most important and memorable cards in UFC history. The event delivered one of the greatest title fights in UFC history in addition to Conor McGregor winning his first-ever UFC title. The main card consisted of five exciting finishes, including knockout wins for Jeremy Stephens and Thomas Almeida. The co-main event featured a rematch between Robbie Lawler and Rory MacDonald for the UFC Welterweight Championship. After five incredible rounds of action, Lawler defended his title by knocking out MacDonald with a shot to the nose.
The main event featured long time featherweight standout Chad Mendes taking on Conor McGregor after the withdrawal of former champion Jose Aldo. After being taken down repeatedly, McGregor was able to survive, get back on his feet and delivered a thunderous left hand that sent Mendes to the canvas. McGregor claimed the Interim Featherweight Championship which set up a future battle with longtime UFC Featherweight Champion Jose Aldo in December 2015.
UFC 193: Rousey vs Holm — November 14, 2015
UFC 193 is important for one reason and one reason only. It marked the end of Ronda Rousey’s dominant title reign. The card delivered several impressive finishes, but nothing comes even close to what went down in the main event.
In one of the most stunning upsets in MMA history, Holly Holm knocked out Rousey via head kick and punches and claimed the UFC Bantamweight Champion. Holm dominated Rousey from the start utilizing her crisp boxing and crafty footwork. After peppering Rousey with fluent and well-timed strikes in the first round, Holm found an opening and delivered a perfectly timed head kick to the side of Rousey’s face and ended the fight shortly after with several follow up strikes. It was the type of performance that defined an individuals career and left fans in utter shock and disbelief.
UFC 194: Aldo vs McGregor — December 12, 2015
After much anticipation and excitement, the grudge match between Jose Aldo and Conor McGregor finally took place at UFC 194 on December 12, 2015. Most tuning in expected a highly competitive affair that would last several rounds between the two top featherweights in the world.
194 delivered yet another stunning moment as Conor McGregor delivered a crushing 13-second victory by knocking out Jose Aldo. McGregor baited the Brazilian Champion and landed a signature left hand that sent the Brazilian legend to the canvas and out cold. McGregor finally realized his dream of becoming an undisputed UFC Champion and reveled in his victory.