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The 5 Greatest UFC Fights of 2020

Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is one of the most exciting and dangerous sports in the world.

From devastating knockouts to five-round wars between fighters, 2020 proved a climactic year for MMA, and for its leading organisation- The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).

The UFC has long been synonymous with MMA, as the optimum promoter of the sport. The company has continued to grow every year, with more talent, more events, and most importantly- more fights.

This was no different in 2020, the year that proved to be one of the company’s most successful ever, with 456 fights.

I’m counting down the five greatest fights from this truly amazing year of fights in the UFC.

Shot of T Mobile arena the home of the UFC
Photo by Alonso Reyes on Unsplash
  1. Justin Gaethje vs Tony Ferguson, UFC 249, May 10th, 2020

Tony Ferguson was on a twelve fight win streak and was scheduled to fight lightweight champion, Khabib Nurmagomedov, at UFC 249 Khabib, however, developed an injury two weeks out from the fight and had to pull out.

A dangerous Justin Gaethje stepped in as replacement, and these two exciting fighters were ready to compete for the interim title on May 10th.

They didn’t disappoint.

In a brutal five round bout, Justin Gaethje went on to outclass and put a clinic on Tony Ferguson. This was something many people didn’t see coming, especially since he was a last-minute replacement for the injured Khabib.

The fight could easily have been stopped at numerous points before the final stoppage in the fifth round due to TKO.

Gaethje was precise with his punches and ended Ferguson’s twelve fight win streak in spectacular fashion, declaring him the interim lightweight champion.

Watch the highlights below:


  1. Dan Hooker vs Paul Felder, UFC Auckland Fight Night, 23rd February 2020

In one of the closest and most memorable fights of the year, top lightweight contenders, Dan Hooker and Paul Felder, were expected to deliver an absolute war in the UFC Auckland main event.

That is exactly what they did.

The first two rounds saw the New Zealand fighter, Dan Hooker, dominate and give Felder a tough time, switching up between his punches and kicks. It was in the third round, however, when the tide started to shift.

It was a very close round with Felder landing stronger shots, but Hooker being the more active. In the fourth and fifth, Felder continued his tenacious pace. Hooker, however, would last to the final bell.

By the end of the fight, Hooker’s performance was good enough to overcome Felder, and he won the fight by split decision.

The back-and-forth action and the passion showed by both men made this fight a clear contender for fight of the year only one month into it.

Watch the highlights below:


  1. Dustin Poirier vs Dan Hooker, UFC Vegas 4, 28th June 2020

Dan Hooker’s impressive outing against Paul Felder is what earned him a shot against top lightweight contender, Dustin Poirier, in a fight that garnered fan anticipation from the minute it was announced.

Hooker came out of the gates hot, just as he did against Felder.  This frustrated Poirier early through many different strikes, leaving him hurt on multiple occasions.

In round two, however, Poirier began to take control. This led to a contender for round of the year, with both fighters going for broke and providing five minutes of pure violence.

Despite Poirier’s best efforts, he could not put Hooker away the rest of the fight. He did, however, continue to give Hooker a hard time in one of the smartest striking displays of the year.

Ultimately the judges gave Poirier the unanimous decision victory.

Both men won that night, for me, having put on a fantastic fight. Dan Hooker had well and truly shown that he deserved to be at the top in the lightweight division.

Watch the highlights below:


  1. Deiveson Figueiredo vs Brandon Moreno, UFC 256, 13th December 2020

In a fight that was announced only three weeks before the scheduled bout, both men proceeded to put on possibly the best flyweight fight in history.

The majority of fans and media around the world thought that Figueiredo was too much for Moreno, that the latter would not be able to handle the intensity and skill that the Brazilian brought to the table.

When the fight began, however, everyone saw the skill, courage, and determination that Moreno possessed.

Figueiredo won the first two rounds and it was looking like a cruise to an easy victory.

This all changed in the third, when Figueiredo had a point deducted from him for an illegal kick to the groin. This changed the whole course of the fight.

Moreno won round four and five, with the champion Figueiredo looking tired. He went on to gather his strength for the fifth and final round, going on to win it.

The fight was ruled a majority draw, seeing Figueiredo keep the title.

It was one of the most engaging, back-and-forth fights that the flyweight division has ever seen, and will be remembered for a long time.

Watch the highlights below:


  1. Joanna Jedrzejczyk vs Zhang Weili, UFC 248, 8th March 2020

Joanna Jedrzejczyk and Zhang Weili delivered the greatest fight in women’s MMA history when they met in a five-round war at UFC 248.

From the opening bell, this fight had a special feel about it and people were ready to witness something great. Both fighters came forward at all times and approached the fight with vicious intent.

Every clean combination of strikes that Jedrzejczyk threw was met by sheer will and grit from Zhang, who also returned with violent punches.

Throwing caution to the wind, Zhang was happy to take a few punches to get on the inside and throw her heavy shots.

By the fifth round, both fighters were covered in blood and Jedrzejczyk had a large hematoma on her forehead due to the volume and power of Zhang’s shots.

No matter how many strikes each fighter absorbed, they never stopped moving forward toward their shot at victory.

Before you knew it, the fight was over, and Zhang Weili won via split decision.  She retained her spot at the top of the women’s straw-weight division and held on to her championship.

Watch the highlights below:

Only time will tell if the 2021 season could live up to this epic run of fights.

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