7 UFC fighters who've also won medals at the Olympics
Unlike boxing we often don’t see top MMA fighters who have embraced the glory of the Olympics.
MMA is a young sport that is just around 30 years old and it is not a part of any international amateur multi-games event like the Pan Ams, Asian Games, or the Olympics itself, so we don’t see many fighters with gold medals dangling around their necks. Only fewer have gone on to be recognised as world-class athletes in Judo or Wrestling.
Most of the MMA fighters who have gone on to become champions have started with jiu-jitsu or Muay Thai or wrestling at a very young age, then later competed in amateur MMA competition to construct an impressive resume to get a shot at fighting in the Octagon.
But there are some fighters who have excelled in their favourite discipline and have gone on to compete at the highest level of amateur competition at the Olympics.
Here are some of the top UFC fighters who have bagged a medal in the Olympics prior to stepping inside the Octagon:
#7 Sara McMann:
One of the best women wrestlers to ever compete in the Octagon is this American fighter who won a silver medal in Olympics 2004 edition in Athens. She was one of the most dominant women fighters in MMA who went on to compete for the title against Ronda Rousey.
Before her title fight, she had an undefeated record of 7 wins and no losses. One can tell how tough was McMahon as she received a title fight with only seven fights experience and in only her second fight in the UFC.
She has also bagged three medals at World Amateur Championship and as well as the Pan Ams. Despite starting late in the cage at the age of 30, she has left her mark of achievements to be remembered. She is also the only woman UFC fighter to have won an Olympic medal in freestyle wrestling.
She also holds the distinction of being the only fighter in the UFC to have an Olympic medalist vs Olympic medalist match against Ronda Rousey, for the UFC Women’s Bantamweight title.