5 Most Famous UFC Fighters
How times have changed! The number of social media followers and the length of one's Wikipedia page are the measuring sticks of popularity in the digital age that has consumed us to the gills.
It's relatively easy to become famous in the age of virality; case in point, the incredibly vexing Paul brothers, the catch me outside girl – the list of celebrities who got famous for virtual stupidity is endless. However, why am I unleashing my vitriol against the digital facade on a sports website?
Coming straight to the point, MMA may be an extremely entertaining sport to watch, but the rise of it has to be attributed partly to the social media boom. A large chunk of the UFC fanbase gravitated towards the unhinged spectacle of art and destruction through highlight reel knockouts and montages that circulated on Facebook, Twitter, and other social websites. The larger than life personalities of MMA also saw an augmented fan following as the emphasis shifted to online branding. MMA was always destined to blow up but social media channels were the required catalysts in the process.
From being brandished as a sport too brutal for the masses, MMA is now viewed as the most exciting demonstration of athletic excellence. However, without the fighters themselves, none of it would have been possible irrespective of social media or the countless marketing strategies.
This slider takes a lot at those select few mixed martial artists who are synonymous with the success of UFC. These fighters are responsible for turning casuals into hardcore fans and continue to do so, owing to their reputation. Even if someone is not an all-out MMA fan, he or she may have surely heard of at least one name on this list, if not some.
#5 Chuck Liddell
Beginning the list with the Iceman himself, Chuck Liddell was one of the earliest, if not the first mainstream star in UFC history. The former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion was the epitome of a badass with unsurmountable ruthlessness and equal amounts of coolness.
Liddell is credited for increasing the stock of the UFC in the early 2000s and had the knack of producing the one-punch knockouts regarded as the staple requirement for every new MMA fan. He was a perennial fan favorite who has the most finishes (14) and wins (16) in UFC's Light Heavyweight division from a total of 23 fights. His overall marketability was instrumental in the UFC's rise and acceptance on a larger scale in the United States and other combat-crazy countries. The Mohawk aka Icehawk and his hammer of a right hand are iconic entities in MMA folklore.
Liddell may not be in the best of times currently, but his contribution to the UFC as well as his popularity can't be ignored. But, it takes two hands to clap and Liddell needed a worthy dance partner to take UFC to next pedestal.
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