While the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) may be the king of today’s mixed martial arts (MMA) world, Bellator is challenging Dana White’s organization but those two leagues are hardly by themselves in hosting bouts inside the cages called the Octagon and there are many more champions that exist outside the UFC and Bellator.
This thought came to me the other day when I was wondering how many Brazilian champions there are because they seem to be the dominant country in the world of MMA. After all, it was the Gracie family who put the UFC on the map originally, that family of submission specialists.
So I did my homework and research and discovered that there are actually a handful of different operations holding MMA bouts and amongst that large group , 343 fighters both men and women have claimed a championship belt. The entire list is below and within that group, 31 countries are represented.
The United States has crowned the most title holders with 177. Japan actually comes in second with 61, due mostly in part to the PRIDE championships. Then there is Brazil with 41. I found it surprising that there were so many different organizations but as you peruse through the list, you will see familiar names who have won titles in separate leagues and several who have won titles in more than one division.