Fighters With The Best and Worst Year in 2021

With 2021 coming to an end, and 2022 is coming, the time is right for a look back on the year we just left behind. It was a year with controversies, and ups and downs for the entire world of sports, for mixed martial arts, and for individual fighters as well. Today, let’s take a look back at the year behind us, focusing especially on the fighters who did best in 2021, outdoing the expectations of the fans and punters alike who kept an eye on the most complete offer in online betting Mozambique. But first, let’s take a look at the fighters who did the worst.

The worst

When it comes strictly to records, Nate Diaz is one of the fighters showing a clear decline compared to his previous years. In 2021, he only had one major fight, and he lost it to Leon Edwards by unanimous decision. Alistair “The Demolition Man” Overeem also didn’t have a good year in 2021: his only major fight ended in a loss as a result of a cross-hook combo he was on the receiving end of in his bout with Alexander Volkov. Last year, he won both of his fights. 

But the worst of the worst was clearly Conor McGregor. He started the year with a loss to Dustin Poirier in January, and in the rematch, he also lost – but this time, it was not just the fight but also his mobility, having broken an ankle in the fight. He hasn’t returned to the octagon ever since.

The best

One of the notable fighters standing out this year is clearly Islam Makhachev, the 30-year-old Russian Sambo expert. He won all of three of his fights this year, and for next year, he is expected to go for the lightweight title. His next fight is scheduled for February – he will face Beneil Dariush in a Fight Night event.

Rose “Thug” Namajunas impressed this year by regaining her strawweight title this spring and then successfully defending it against Zhang Weili in November. 

Ciryl “Bon Gamin” Gane has been in the UFC for just a couple of years but he already impressed everyone, not just with his striking skill (which is his speciality, having been trained in kickboxing and Muay Thai) but his overall performance. Since transitioning to MMA, he won all his fights – three of them in 2021. His next fight, against Francis N’Gannou, is scheduled for January.

Charles “Do Bronx” Oliveira has seen continuous success since mid-2018 in the UFC. This year, he met Michael Chandler and Dustin Poirier in the Octagon, winning both times, and earning the title of UFC Lightweight Champion of the world.

Finally, let’s not forget Kamarudeen (Kamaru) Usman, also known as the “Nigerian Nightmare” who didn’t only retain his UFC Welterweight Champion title but, as of September, has become the number one in the UFC’s pound for pound rankings.

Philip hails from Dublin in Ireland and has been a fan of mixed martial arts for many years. Working as a filmmaker and a writer Philip covers the UFC across all mediums. He is a firm believer that the raw passion and visceral nature of unarmed combat makes mixed martial arts the greatest sport in the world.