Since the UFC plans on having a women’s title fight at 145lbs but they don’t plan on including Cyborg in the bout, we figured it appropriate to discuss other title bouts that everyone knew weren’t really title bouts.

from MMA FIghting
from MMA FIghting

Since taking over, the new UFC owners seem hell bent on making sure each PPV has a title fight. Evidently, WME-IMG feels that nobody is willing to fork over their money if a shiny gold belt isn’t on the line in at least one bout.
This was evident at UFC 206, when management made the peculiar choice of making the Anthony Pettis vs Max Holloway fight for the interim featherweight championship. Jose Aldo, the division’s official champion, had just fought back at UFC 200, and planned to fight again in early 2017. He was hardly away from the cage long enough to warrant somebody else being given a claim to the title.

But evidently this is the era of the sport we are in: meaningless title fights and USADA suspensions.

With UFC 208 in mind, here are the top 7 title fights that weren’t really title fights…


7. Carla Esparza vs. Rose Namajunas  “A Champion Will Be Crowned” TUF Finale


The UFC decided to kick off the women’s strawweight division by featuring it in a season of the Ultimate Fighter. Which would be fine, only they decided that the winner of the season would be the division’s first champion.

The inaugural title fight in the women’s strawweight division was between Rose Namajunas and Carla Esparza. Only this fight wouldn’t determine who the best fighter in the weight class was, only who was the best out of those that were on that season of the show.

Granted, some of the top strawweights competed in the tournament. Jessica Penne, Randa Markos, Felice Herrig, Tecia Torres and Joanne Calderwood were all in the tourney and on the show. But you don’t decide a champion based on a reality TV show. Requiring that athletes live in a house with no contact to the outside world for an extended period of time has nothing to do with the sport of MMA. It should have had nothing to do with determining a champion either.

Joanne Jedrzejczyk just waited until Carla Esparza won the reality TV show, then beat her up and took her title.

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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.