Whether you watch MMA for the fight hype, whacky characters, or amazing feats of athleticism, one thing is for sure – everyone loves a knockout. And the best knockouts are the ones where the guy resembles a vegetable for a short time. Here are a few such examples:
01) Carlos Condit Prematurely Ends Dan Hardy’s Career
Some say that Dan Hardy was never the same after his loss against GSP, but actually it was this knockout by Carlos Condit that defeated him morally. He actually looked as good as you can look losing to GSP, but after this sick knockout, he was never the same. He’s still popular and technically has a job, but is currently turning down fights while he “finds himself”.
02) Anderson Silva makes a fool out of Vitor Belfort
Since Vimeo doesn’t support timestamps, you will have to fast-forward to 4:20 (yeah, LAWL). Unless you want to watch the first 4 minutes of Anderson Silva doing what he does best – making his title contender opponents look like complete geeks before killing them. Steven Seagal credits himself foe teaching Anderson this move, which is actually becoming extremely common in MMA lately. Thank you, Master Seagal.
03) Mark Hunt stalks Chris Tuchscherer and Walks Away
Sometimes the best knockouts are the badass “walk away” knockouts, and Mark Hunt scored one of the best against human punching bag Chris Tuchscherer. He stalked him for the entire first round, and that is usually bad news for Mark Hunt. Thankfully, Chris was willing to “stand and bang” which against Mark Hunt usually means “stand and get knocked the fuck out”. And that’s what happened.
04) Ryoto Machida HUMBLES Rashad Evans and Saves the PPV
UFC 98 was about to go down in history as one of the lamest, most boring events ever. Almost every fight on the main card ended in a decision. Then it was time for Ryoto Machida, who had won 5 of his last 6 fights by decision, versus newly crownded champion Rashad Evans, formerly famous for being extremely boring.
What ended up happening is one of the funniest knockout faces in MMA history, and Machida cut one of the best promos in UFC history after he won the championship. UFC 98 was SAVED, and it was 100% PURE AWESOME.
05) Gabe Gonzaga Ends the Mystique of Cro Cop
Cro Cop, like most fighters coming to the UFC from Japan, had a HUGE amount of hype behind him, a huge following, and a whacky nickname that gets used as his real name in an awkward way. I admit, I was a pretty big fan of the guy during his Pride heyday, but one thing is certain – just because do well in Japanese MMA doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll do well in American promotions. While this is not always the case (look at Shogun, Henderson, Overeem), it almost always is (Cro Cop, Fedor, Wanderlei Silva, Aoki, and oh so many more). The fact is, MMA in Japan is nothing like MMA here, but I digress…
Cro Cop is famous for his deadly high kick, which he used to nearly decapitate Wanderlei Silva in 2006. His UFC debut was actually a boring TKO against tomato can Eddie Alvarez, so it was sad to see him get absolutely destroyed by his own weapon in his second fight. He hasn’t been the same since, losing to pretty much anyone who doesn’t completely suck. He continues to be popular though, and can always be called upon to draw a crowd.
06) Tito Ortiz Digs Evan Tanner an Early Grave
If you are like 90% of UFC’s current audience, you barely knew it existed before The Ultimate Fighter debuted after WWE RAW on January 17, 2005. That’s too bad, because even though nobody cared, there were some AWESOME fights and HUGE stars at the time. The biggest of course was Tito Ortiz, who was unstoppable during his title reign which ran from 2000 to 2003. One of his most infamous moments came after he “buried” Evan Tanner after a SICK slam KO. Beloved by many, Evan Tanner has since passed away, so RIP to him.
07) Dan Henderson Turns Michael Bisping into a Retard
Michael Bisping needed to do ONE THING to survive his fight against Dan Henderson – AVOID THE LEFT HOOK. So what did he do? HE CIRCLED INTO DAN HENDERSON’S LEFT THE WHOLE TIME. Henderson has shown that despite being a great wrestler, there is only one thing he has any interest in doing in MMA – expending all his energy into launching right hooks over and over. In most cases, his opponents can avoid it by circling the other way, but with Bisping it was only a matter of time. Thanks to Dan, we have yet another picture to add to our hilarious Knockout Face collection and became a hilarious meme (check the comments).
08) Tank Abbot and John Matua Invent Planking
We’re going way back for this, because it’s one of the sickest knockouts in UFC history, and made Tank Abbott a huge star in his debut fight, which he is STILL reaping the rewards from (yes, Tank still fights).
Matua had no hope, as instead of trying to avoid Tank’s 1 minute of offense, he somehow thought he was still bouncing in a bar and was trying to put a drunk into a headlock. That strategy didn’t work, and Matua’s brain completely shut down momentarily. It was one of those scary moments that UFC exploited the hell out of.
09) Vitor Belfort puts Matt Lindland in a Neck Brace
Okay, so this didn’t take place in the UFC. But it is one of the sickest knockouts you’ll ever see, and both guys competed in the UFC before, so…
What makes this KO so brutal is not the strike itself, but the aftermath. Matt Lindland’s brain goes through several states of inoperability, and his consciousness exists just enough to make it dangerous for him to move. The doctors did a piss poor job of keeping him from causing permanent damage, and it is just sick to watch. They eventually got him into a neck brace, and he went on to be knocked out in a similar fashion by Robbie Lawler in Strikeforce.