The 5 biggest UFC feuds of the decade (2010-2019)


Top 5 / Top 10

28 Nov 2019, 00:30 IST

Anderson Silva's feud with Chael Sonnen was a classic.
Anderson Silva’s feud with Chael Sonnen was a classic.

Many people would suggest that the sport of MMA is simply pro-wrestling without the scripting, and while that’s not necessarily true all of the time, one thing the two do have in common is the fact that bitter rivalries produce a lot of interest – and usually draw a lot of money, too.

Over the last decade the UFC has seen plenty of epic feuds between fighters, with rivalries often spanning multiple fights and changing shows into must-see events for hardcore and casual fans alike. It’s been hard to whittle the list down, but here are the 5 best feuds in the UFC in the past decade (2010-2019).


#5 Jon Jones vs. Daniel Cormier

Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier remain bitter rivals.
Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier remain bitter rivals.

The feud between Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier started innocently enough; according to most sources, in their first meeting Jones jokingly told Cormier – a former Olympic wrestler – that he’d be able to take him down if they were to fight. Cormier never forgot the jibe and when he decided to move down from Heavyweight to Light-Heavyweight in 2014, a fight with Jones for his UFC Light-Heavyweight title seemed like a natural match to make.

The UFC put the fight together for September 2014’s UFC 178, and things kicked into high gear as the two fighters got a little too close in a pre-show press conference, with the result being a wild brawl with punches exchanged and Cormier even throwing his shoe at ‘Bones’. Later, Jones controversially got personal with Cormier during a conference call – after the call had gone off the air – threatening to kill him after ‘DC’ said he’d like to spit in his face.

The fight at UFC 178 fell apart when Jones picked up an injury, but it was re-booked for UFC 182 a couple of months later, and ‘Bones’ largely dominated en route to a decision win. More was yet to come, though, as Jones controversially tested positive for cocaine in a post-fight drug test and then went onto more issues following a hit-and-run incident.

‘Bones’ was stripped of his title due to his issues – and Cormier won the vacant title by defeating Anthony Johnson, before continuing the feud by telling Jones to “get his sh*t together”. Jones would return in 2016, but a potential rematch fell through when he then tested positive for a banned PED and found himself suspended again.

Eventually the two rematched in 2017 at UFC 214 – with Jones again managing to defeat Cormier, this time by TKO, to regain the title he never truly lost. Even then though, the feud didn’t end. Cormier was gracious in defeat – but only until Jones tested positive for banned substances again, bringing his victory into massive doubt.

The feud has since gone somewhat quiet; Cormier moved up to Heavyweight in 2018 and has remained in the division since, while Jones has since regained the 205lbs title yet again – but a third fight between the two remains a trump card that the UFC could look to pull out in the future, as the duo remain bitter enemies.

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