Among these moments are the submission finishes, where fighters skillfully manipulate their opponents into tapping out or unconsciousness. Here, we will explore the 10 most iconic UFC submission finishes of all time.
The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) has showcased some of the most electrifying and memorable moments in mixed martial arts (MMA) history. Among these moments are the submission finishes, where fighters skillfully manipulate their opponents into tapping out or unconsciousness. Here, we will explore the 10 most iconic UFC submission finishes of all time.
In the inaugural UFC event, Royce Gracie, a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu expert, faced Ken Shamrock, a renowned wrestler. Gracie secured a fight-ending rear-naked choke in the first round, marking the birth of BJJ dominance in MMA.
Frank Mir’s submission victory over Tim Sylvia for the UFC heavyweight championship remains an iconic moment. Despite being the underdog, Mir swiftly trapped Sylvia in an armbar, forcing him to submit and claim the title.
In their rematch, Matt Hughes showcased his grappling skills by reversing a low blow from Frank Trigg into a rear-naked choke. Hughes choked Trigg unconscious, creating one of the most dramatic comebacks in UFC history.
Chael Sonnen dominated Anderson Silva for four and a half rounds, but Silva unleashed a triangle armbar in the final minutes. With seconds left, Silva forced Sonnen to tap out, solidifying his status as one of the greatest champions.
Ronda Rousey’s signature move, the armbar, was on full display in her bout against Miesha Tate. Despite Tate’s resilience, Rousey secured the armbar in the third round, earning her the UFC women’s bantamweight championship.
In a stunning upset, Nate Diaz stepped in on short notice to face the brash Conor McGregor. Diaz weathered early strikes, took the fight to the ground, and locked in a rear-naked choke, forcing McGregor to tap out in the second round.
Known for his speed and technical prowess, Demetrious Johnson executed a masterful suplex-to-armbar transition on Ray Borg. This maneuver highlighted Johnson’s innovative approach and secured his 11th successful title defense.
Brian Ortega showcased his exceptional Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu skills against Cub Swanson. Ortega executed a guillotine choke while airborne, a move rarely seen in MMA, earning him a Performance of the Night bonus and a reputation as a submission specialist.
Tony Ferguson faced Kevin Lee for the interim lightweight championship. Despite being caught in a deep armbar, Ferguson managed to escape and was locked in a triangle choke, ultimately forcing Lee to submit in the third round.
In one of the most highly anticipated fights in UFC history, Khabib Nurmagomedov showcased his grappling dominance against Conor McGregor. Nurmagomedov secured a neck crank in the fourth round, forcing McGregor to tap out and solidifying his undefeated record.
This iconic UFC submission finishes not only demonstrated the technical skills of the fighters but also left an indelible mark on the sport. They exemplify the diversity of submission techniques used in MMA and have contributed to the growth and popularity of the UFC.