2018 is almost over and it’s been an eventful year for the UFC. 570 different fighters entered the Octagon to partake in 474 fights, resulting in 151 TKO/KOs, 91 submissions, 168 unanimous decisions, 61 split/majority decisions, 2 draws, 0 No Contests and 1 DQ.
In this column, I’ll take a statistics-based look at some of the winners, losers and general trends of 2018.
Most Fights- Thiago Santos (5).
Most Wins- Israel Adesanya + Thiago Santos (4).
Most Losses- Andrei Arlovski, Ben Saunders, Brandon Davis, Eryk Anders + Mark Hunt (3).
Most KO/TKO Wins- Thiago Santos (3).
Most KO/TKO Losses- Ben Saunders, Chad Laprise, Derek Brunson, Evan Dunham, Jake Ellenberger, Jared Gordon, Marcin Prachnio, Ricky Rainey + Tim Williams (2).
Most Submission Wins- Charles Oliveira (3).
Most Submission Losses- Carlos Condit, George Sullivan, Guido Cannetti + John Phillips (2).
Most Unanimous Decision Wins- Corey Anderson + Kamaru Usman (3).
Most Unanimous Decision Losses- Alex Garcia, Andrei Arlovski, Brandon Davis, Brett Johns, Daichi Abe, Danielle Taylor, Desmond Green, Emil Weber Meek, Francis Ngannou, Joanna Jędrzejczyk, Marcelo Golm, Mark Hunt, Mizuto Hirota, Olivier Aubin-Mercier, Rafael dos Anjos, Sarah Moras, Sergio Pettis, Stefan Struve, Tecia Torres, Terrion Ware, Thibault Gouti + Trevor Smith (2).
Most Split/Majority Decision Wins- Gian Villante, Jessica Eye, Ji Yeon Kim + Mike Trizano (2).
Most Split/Majority Decision Losses- Dennis Bermudez + Eryk Anders (2).
Most Performance Bonuses- Anthony Smith, Charles Oliveira, Israel Adesanya, Ronaldo Souza + Thiago Santos (3).
Most Times Missing Weight- Yoel Romero (2).
Most Fight Withdrawals- Max Holloway + Ray Borg (3).
Highest Dwyer Score of the Year- UFC 229: Khabib vs. McGregor (+45).
Lowest Dwyer Score of the Year- UFC Fight Night: Volkan vs. Smith (-21).
This graph shows the average number of successful title defenses made by the reigning champions, as a collective, at any point in UFC history.
Today, our 12 reigning champions hold a combined 13 successful defenses, giving them an average of 1.08 successful defenses each. This means our current crop of title-holders are the least-dominant UFC champions we’ve had since May 2008.
Statistically speaking, the most dominant crop of champions in UFC history (pictured above) reigned between the 25th of May 2013 and the 6th of July 2013. The nine reigning champions at that time had made 35 combined successful title defenses- an average of 3.89 successful title defenses each.
Here’s a graphic which shows the timeline of successful UFC title defenses made in all weight classes since 1997, updated to include all results in 2018. As this image is a little clustered, here are the individual images for each division: Heavyweight, Light-Heavyweight, Middleweight, Welterweight, Lightweight, Featherweight, Bantamweight, Flyweight, Women’s Featherweight, Women’s Bantamweight, Women’s Flyweight + Women’s Strawweight.
This graphic shows the average winning streak that a fighter needed to put together before receiving a title shot against a reigning UFC Champion. Fighters in 2018 needed to put an average streak of 2.77 wins together before they earned a title shot.
This table goes into a little more detail on each year’s title challengers, highlighting the best and worst winning and losing streaks that resulted in a UFC title shot each year.
This graphic shows the number of days taken for a fighter to reach two UFC wins in a calendar year. This year, Jeremy Stephens was the first fighter to reach that mark just 55 days into 2018.
These two charts display the same information (the first fighter to reach two UFC victories in a calendar year), split into male and female categories.
This graph shows the number of reigning UFC interim champions at any time between 1993 and today. The UFC has introduced 15 interim titles in total.
These two graphs, both updated to include interim titles introduced in 2018, show how many interim titles were introduced each year and which weight divisions those titles were introduced in. There has yet to be an interim champion crowned in any women’s division.
There have been 8 unification bouts (interim champion vs. undisputed champion) in UFC history, with interim champions getting the better of undisputed champions 5 wins to 3 in those match-ups.
That wraps up my statistical review of 2018. As always, enjoy the fights!