Five MMA fantasy fights with clear-cut winners
Fantasy fight aficionados, this one is for you. We've journeyed deep into the reaches of our imagination and have come up with the five most enticing hypothetical fights of all time, including an epic heavyweight clash that Mixed Martial Arts fans have been dreaming about for more than 20 years.
5. Ronda Rousey vs. Cris Cyborg
Ronda Rousey: 12-2
Cris Cyborg: 24-2
The dream match between Rousey and Cyborg had no reason to stay a dream, but for Rousey’s sake, it’s better that it did. Even before Rousey lost her nerve and desire to fight following her loss to Holly Holm, there was no way she’d be able to handle Cyborg’s heavy hands or take her down. Fans debate this bout to this day, but it would have been a one-sided beating with Cyborg standing tall.
Winner: Cris Cyborg
4. Conor McGregor vs. Tony Ferguson
Conor McGregor: 22-6
Tony Ferguson: 25-6
Though a potential McGregor/Ferguson bout can still happen as the two continue their respective declines, it would likely resemble what we’d see at their best. McGregor’s counter-punching and awkwardness would have given Ferguson fits, and because Ferguson wouldn’t be able to wrangle McGregor, he’d get mangled instead. Lightweight could have been McGregor’s best weight had he stayed committed to the UFC, and as great as Ferguson was in his prime, he’d just be another victim to the Notorious One.
Winner: Conor McGregor
3. Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. B.J. Penn
Khabib Nurmagomedov: 29-0
B.J. Penn: 16-14
Both Nurmagomedov and Penn are on the short list for the best lightweights ever, but putting them head to head is only exciting if one suspends all disbelief. Penn would have been no match for Nurmagomedov, with his superior size being compromised by his historically spotty cardio. Nurmagomedov’s superior groundwork and movement would render Penn defenseless, making Nurmagomedov the winner in any hypothetical showdown.
Winner: Khabib Nurmagomedov
2. Fedor Emelianenko vs. Randy Couture
Fedor Emelianenko: 39-6
Randy Couture: 19-11
Emelianenko vs. Couture will be debated and analyzed for generations to come, and that’s hard to believe. Couture may have fought the better opposition over the course of his career, but it’s hard seeing him survive the onslaught of Emelianenko’s offense. Couture didn’t have an ounce of quit in him, but that would ultimately be useless if - and when - he got pummeled into unconsciousness by "The Last Emperor". As beloved as Couture is, Emelianenko would have beaten him straight up in a prime vs. prime situation.
Winner: Fedor Emelianenko
1. Georges St-Pierre vs. Anderson Silva
Georges St-Pierre: 26-2
Anderson Silva: 34-11
In this bout pitting two of the greatest ever against one another, there’s only one logical conclusion to this fantasy pairing. GSP would have been rolled over by Silva so easily that heads would spin. As solid as St-Pierre was, the mere idea of him facing a prime Silva at middleweight would be a cause for concern, as Silva’s movement, power, and size would nullify anything St-Pierre could do to him. This perpetually debated bout may have strong supporters of either man, but Silva would have destroyed St-Pierre if they ever fought in real life.
Winner: Anderson Silva