Now that we’re past the halfway point of this year, there’s no better time to look back at some of the best and most brutal UFC fights to grace the octagon in 2022.
With some of the most powerful athletes in the UFC clashing, we’ve already seen a series of incredible battles, which leaves one wondering why many consider MMA to be the most exhilarating combat sport in the world. In fact, it was reported in early June that the UFC won just over a billion dollars last yearseeing it finally take its rightful place among the most lucrative sports in the world.
Our regular readers will know that the Championship is one of the most popular sports among bookmakers and punters, including through these live casino sites. With so much blood, sweat, tears and cash on the line, let’s take a look at some of the most intense fights of 2022 (so far).
5. Michael Chandler vs. Tony Ferguson – UFC 274
Taking place in Phoenix, Arizona (the first fight in the city since Francis Ngannou knocked out Cain Velasquez in 2019), there was no doubt that Chandler vs. Ferguson was by no means going to be exciting.
Although they won’t be part of the title fights of the night, anyone who knows the UFC knows that these two fighters have a history of classic brawls that have hooked fans over the years.
Ferguson having faced three straight defeats before the match, the bookies had their sights set on a win for Chandler, and they weren’t wrong. Despite a strong start, Ferguson soon faced a powerful and sustained attack from “Iron Mike”, quickly followed by a takedown.
In round two, each fighter’s fortunes were mixed, but that situation was quickly put to bed after 17 seconds when Chandler hit Ferguson with a lightning kick, sending him to the ground with a knockout. UFC President Dana White later said it was the most vicious thing he had ever seen inside the octagon.
With his last win in 2019 over Donald Cerrone, 38-year-old Ferguson now faces questions about his future in the UFC. Find out who we think Chandler could face in his next fight.
4. Tai Tuivasa vs. Derrick Lewis – UFC 271
An event between two fan favorites, February’s collision between Tai Tuivasa and Derrick Lewis was met with much anticipation. Both contenders ended 2021 with wins by knockout, and Tuivasa hadn’t lost a match since losing to Sergey Spivak in March 2019.
It’s no surprise, then, that the pair provided the crowd with an intense battle that saw Tuivasa pick up the biggest victory of his career. Although the Aussie was treated to a flurry of hammers in the opening two rounds, he quickly turned things around and planted Lewis with an expert elbow to the face.
Although Lewis holds the all-time knockout record (13 KOs) and is fighting his opponent in his hometown of Houston, Texas, that wasn’t enough to hold the impressive power of Tuivasa. At times, Lewis looked like he was on his way to his 14th knockout, employing two successful takedowns that left the Tuivasa team sweating.
But that wasn’t to be the case as Tuivasa sent in a series of powerful attacks that ultimately left Lewis stunned and on the ground. The Aussie celebrated by drinking a beer inside an old shoe, affectionately known to fans as the ‘shoey’.
3. Calvin Kattar vs. Giga Chikadze – UFC 270
The brutality of the first UFC fight of 2022 was one fans are still talking about six months later. January’s bout at UFC Vegas 46 saw Calvin Kattar nearly destroy Giga Chikadze after his humiliating loss to Max Holloway.
With a nine-game winning streak under his belt, many thought a victory for Chikadze was almost inevitable, but that simply wasn’t the case. With a slip early in the match, Kattar was able to dominate within minutes, and Chikadze never quite recovered.
Although he had some shining moments, the 2021 MMAjunkie Fighter of the Year was under sustained pressure from Kattar, who landed his legendary punches and elbows to re-sculpt his opponent’s face.
In the fifth round, there was no doubt who the winner of the night was, and Kattar won via unanimous decision, briefly re-establishing him as one of MMA’s top featherweights ahead of his recent loss to Josh Emmett at UFC Austin. .
Chikadze’s injuries were so horrific that he faced a potential six-month post-fight medical suspension. It was, however, announced in May that he would be the recipient of the 2022 Forrest Griffin Community Award at the 2022 UFC Hall of Fame induction ceremony.
2. Alexander Volkanovski vs. Chan Sung Jung – UFC 273
Taking place at the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida, just over 14,000 MMA fans witnessed The Korean Zombie’s painstaking demolition as Alexander Volkanovski cemented his place among the greatest featherweight fighters of all time. time.
Picking up his 21st straight win, Volkanovski dominated throughout the fight, which gracefully ended in a 4th round TKO. Although Jung landed a series of fiercely barbaric shots on Volkanovski, they had little to no effect on the Aussie, who surpassed Jung in speed and power.
Despite struggling to breathe, Jung opted to continue after three rounds, only for the fight to end 45 seconds after the fourth. In a post-match interview, Volkanovski said he felt for his opponent and wished the referee had ended the fight sooner.
Although many predicted the fight would be the last of Jung’s career, who hasn’t seen a title since 2013, the fighter recently taken to instagram to reveal that he wants at least one more fight before hanging up the gloves.
“Alexander the Great” will fight Max Holloway at UFC 276 in July.
1. Gilbert Burns vs. Khamzat Chimaev – UFC 273
A fight that could well be the match of 2022, let alone the first six months, this gargantuan battle saw the undefeated Khamzat Chimaev at his most vulnerable.
Referred to by some as more of a “war” than a match, Burns vs. Chimaev was a three-round whirlwind that ultimately saw Chimaev outplay his opponent. Despite only being hit once in his first four UFC fights combined, Chimaev suffered no less than 119 strikes from “Durinho” before the match was over. In fact, with a series of impressive blows, Burns opened a cut on the face of Chimaev, who visibly trembled under the onslaught.
Despite a tough first two rounds, Chimaev dug deep in the third and managed to take the win with a unanimous judges’ decision (48–47, 47–48, 48–47). The fight was so exciting that both contestants won the night’s “Fight of the Night” bonus.
In the post-match interview, Chimaev said he was “too excited” to knock Burns out and promised to “break somebody” in his next fight. Currently, Chimaev remains undefeated after 11 matches and finds himself among the most exciting and impressive welterweight fighters in the world.
Chimaev’s next fight is set to take place in Abu Dhabi in October, while Burns has asked the UFC for a rematch, having felt robbed by the decision to end the match early.