The UFC is in a period of transition. Many of the stars of the Zuffa-era are getting older, and a new generation of athletes are poised to take their place. This next generation is an interesting class.

As MMA continues to grow, so too does the amount of natural athletes choosing to go into the sport. This next class of fighters coming up have all been training since they were kids, and there are several who are starting to separate themselves from the pack.

Not everyone on this list started training early however, as there is at least one notable inclusion who has succeeded despite having little experience.

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In general, the next generation of fighters coming up are natural athletes, who in another era would have gone into other sports. This is the generation of fighters who grew up after MMA had already achieved some semblance of mainstream success. In other words, Tank Abbott wouldn’t have been successful in this era (he arguably wasn’t successful in his).

Not every fighter on this list is on a winning streak either, in fact multiple names are coming off of losses. That is also something that has changed in the sport: most fighters are losing at least a few bouts early in their career.

Fighters reaching the top of their division undefeated is a rarity these days, though a couple names on this list are on their way to doing just that.

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6. Doo Ho Choi

I could watch Doo Ho Choi vs. Cub Swanson from UFC 206 every day for the rest of my life. Their bout has to be one of the most amazing fights to ever kick-off a PPV.

Choi dropped the fight, but Cub Swanson is only a small step below the elite at featherweight, and he almost finished him. The 26 year-old is still developing as a fighter; his biggest fights are still to come.

Coming into the bout, Choi was undefeated in the UFC. He won his first 3 fights for the company by knocking out his opponent in the first round. He wasn’t able to knockout Swanson, but Choi will be back, and it will be pretty exciting when he is.

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Ian is a MMA writer based out of Toronto, ON Canada. An avid mixed martial arts enthusiast and passionate fan since he was born, Ian has been writing about mixed martial arts for over 5 years.