5 best undefeated UFC fighters who aren't ranked

Ian Garry added to his unbeaten resume at UFC 273
Ian Garry added to his unbeaten resume at UFC 273

Making it to the UFC without tasting defeat is a truly remarkable accomplishment for any fighter. Given the wealth of talent in the sport today, it is becoming increasingly hard to do, but several fighters on the roster still have their undefeated streak intact. Just how long they will remain undefeated is another question altogether.

Combat sports has always loved undefeated fighters. The idea of an unbeatable competitor never ceases to capture the imagination, and so fighters do their best to avoid this first defeat at all costs. If they are able to do so, they can quickly become big stars in the sport, although it’s obviously much easier said than done.

With that being said, not every undefeated fighter is created equal. While it is an impressive achievement, expecting unranked and undefeated fighters to develop into the next Khabib Nurmagomedov is unreasonable.

However, there are a few undefeated fighters on the current roster who could soon be set to enter the rankings and make a big splash in the sport. Before listing out the five best undefeated UFC fighters who aren't ranked, we would like to give an honorable mention to Mark Madsen, a UFC lightweight who is also undefeated.

#5. Nick Maximov - UFC middleweight

Nick Maximov holds a record of 8-0
Nick Maximov holds a record of 8-0

Nick Maximov has gained a lot of attention as he is the latest prospect to come out of the famous Nick Diaz academy. Unlike his mentors, Maximov employs more of a grappling-heavy approach inside the octagon that has served him incredibly well thus far.

Maximov defeated Cody Brundage in his promotional debut and was placed into a co-main event bout in his very next fight. He faced Punahele Soriano to secure another win, this time by split decision.

The close nature of that fight is the primary reason he does not rank higher on this list. Maximov will face his biggest test yet as he is scheduled to face Andre Petrovski on May 14. It will be interesting to see how he fares and a win could see him on the verge of entering the middleweight rankings.

At just 24 years old, even if he were to lose his next fight, he would remain a prominent name to keep an eye out for in the future.

#4. Ian Garry - UFC welterweight

Ian Garry holds a record of 9-0
Ian Garry holds a record of 9-0

Ian Garry’s UFC debut had many comparing him to Conor McGregor after the Irish prospect delivered a huge knockout punch to earn a first-round victory. European MMA fans have been aware of Garry for some time as he stormed to the Cage Warriors welterweight title without tasting defeat.

Garry followed up his high-profile debut with a more measured performance that saw him defeat Darian Weeks via unanimous decision on April 9. While the hype surrounding ‘The Future’ appears to have calmed down in the wake of that bout, at just 24 years of age, he has plenty of time to improve.

Garry currently trains at one of the elite gyms in the sport in Sanford MMA, so he appears to have a good shot at reaching his potential. He also appears to have the right attitude and has stated he is in no rush to climb the rankings which shows maturity beyond his years.

#3. Alexander Romanov - UFC heavyweight

Alexander Romanov holds a record of 15-0
Alexander Romanov holds a record of 15-0

Typically, the UFC pushes heavyweight prospects very quickly but Moldova’s Alexander Romanov appears to be the exception to this rule. While he is the oldest name to feature on this list, he has more competitive experience than most and has passed every test he’s faced thus far.

Of his 15 professional fights, Romanov has defeated every opponent inside the distance. Romanov first competed in the UFC in 2020 where he earned an impressive second-round submission win over Roque Martinez.

He followed that up with a technical submission win, a technical decision win and most recently a TKO victory over Jared Vanderaa. Now that he’s on a four-fight win streak inside the octagon, it may not be long before he finds himself in the rankings.

He will have a particularly good opportunity to do so should he win his next bout, which is scheduled for April 23 against Tanner Boser. Boser, who has previously been ranked himself, will provide the toughest test Romanov has faced thus far.

Should he pass that test, it will be time to start taking the Moldovan fighter seriously as a big-time threat in the heavyweight division.

#2. Mohammad Mokaev - UFC flyweight

Mohammad Mokaev holds a record of 6-0 (1 NC)
Mohammad Mokaev holds a record of 6-0 (1 NC)

Mohammad Mokaev may only be one fight into his UFC run, but he has already cemented himself as one of the best young prospects in the sport. ‘The Punisher’ holds ridiculous potential given he is just 21 years old and could be set to climb the rankings very quickly.

Mokaev’s octagon debut was truly one to behold as he overwhelmed Cody Durden on his way to earning a submission win inside a minute at UFC London. While he was born in Dagestan, Russia, ‘The Punisher’ calls England home and received tremendous support fighting in front of such a partisan crowd.

Whilst it would usually be unheard of, the highly-touted prospect could easily find himself entering the rankings with just one more win in the octagon. The sky seems to be the limit for Mokaev, who not only hasn’t lost since turning professional but also went undefeated during a lengthy amateur career too.

#1. Jack Shore - UFC bantamweight

Jack Shore (right) holds a record of 16-0
Jack Shore (right) holds a record of 16-0

In truth, it’s a little shocking that Jack Shore still remains outside the rankings given the consistency he has shown inside the octagon. ‘Tank’ won and defended the Cage Warriors bantamweight title before making the jump to the UFC in 2019.

Having now won five fights with the promotion, it’s surprising he’s yet to be rewarded with a number next to his name. Shore’s promotional debut saw him earn a performance of the night bonus when he picked up the win via third-round submission in Denmark.

He followed that up with a second straight submission win before a split decision victory in his third fight that may have seen his stock drop a touch. He then earned another decision victory before his most recent performance that really turned some heads.

At UFC London, Shore put on a breathtaking performance to defeat a very formidable opponent in Dagestani grappler Timur Valiev. That unanimous decision win proved just how far the Welsh fighter has come and really ought to have entered the rankings the following week.

He most certainly won't be denied a ranking should he add another victory to his already incredibly impressive winning streak.

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Edited by Allan Mathew
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