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10 longest losing streaks in UFC history

Tom Mulligan
Top 5 / Top 10
11.56K   //    Timeless

For many fighters, three straight defeats would almost certainly spell the end of their UFC career. There were, however, some exceptions to this rule and as a result, a number of fighters managed to string together notably longer losing streaks and in some cases, still retain their spot on the UFC roster.

In other cases, fighters found themselves cut after hitting the magic number of three losses, worked their way back to the UFC only to continue right where they left off, spreading their consecutive UFC defeats out over a number of years.

Let's take a look at the ten fighters who hold the dubious distinction of owning the largest number of consecutive losses in UFC history.

#10. Steve Cantwell - 5 fights

UFC record: 1-5-0

Overall record: 7-6-0

Steve "The Robot" Cantwell arrived in the UFC from WEC in 2008 as an exciting light heavyweight with a 5-1-0 record. He opened his account with the promotion in impressive fashion, earning a first-round submission win over the previously undefeated Razak Al-Hassan. Unfortunately for Cantwell, that would transpire to be the last time he would have his hand raised in his professional MMA career.

What followed was a run of poor form and luck, the likes of which Cantwell could never have anticipated. After notching his first UFC win, Cantwell went on to lose his next five contests all by unanimous decision. A pair of losses to Luiz Cane and Brian Stann in 2009 set the stage for his fall from grace before a series of injuries forced the California native out of action for almost two years. On his return to the octagon in 2011, very little had changed for "The Robot" as he added two more defeats to his resume, this time at the hands of Cyrille Diabate and Mike Massenzio before closing out his career with another unanimous decision loss against Riki Fukuda in 2012.

#9. Josh Burkman - 5 fights

UFC 182: Lombard v Burkman
UFC 182: Lombard v Burkman

UFC record: 6-12-0 (1 no contest)

Overall record: 28-17-0

Josh Burkman actually has the rare distinction of holding two five-fight losing streaks during his time with the UFC.

After building up an impressive 12-2-0 record on the regional circuit, Burkman made his way into the UFC via the second season of The Ultimate Fighter back in 2005. A promising start to UFC life saw the Utah native pick up five wins in his first seven appearances before things took a downward turn. Consecutive losses to Mick Swick, Dustin Hazelett and Pete Sell were enough to see Burkman released by the promotion.

Free from the pressure of performing on the biggest stage, Burkman won nine of his next eleven fights which was enough to earn a chance at redemption with the UFC. With his first fight back in the promotion being deemed a no contest, the 38-year-old was given a chance to get his first UFC win in eight years against Dong Hyun Kim at UFC 187. Unfortunately for Burkman, he found himself on the receiving end of an arm triangle choke in the third round, taking his UFC losing streak to four fights. Three months later, four became five as Burkman fell victim to a third-round TKO at the hands of Patrick Cote.

Burkman's lone win in nine appearances since returning for his second stint in the UFC, came against KJ Noons at UFC Fight Night 82 in 2016. Since then, "The People's Warrior" has lost five straight for the second time and is likely facing the prospect of either retirement or being cut from the UFC for the second time in his career.

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