13 Best Mexican UFC Fighters Of All Time

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Mexican fighters are usually represented on the big stage in any combat sport.

This is also true in the world of Mixed Martial Arts. Plenty of Mexican warriors stepped inside the octagon; some held the UFC gold. 

To focus on some of the unique talents from this part of the world, I’ve prepared a list of the best Mexican UFC fighters you might know.

13. Alejandro Perez

The Aguas Calientes, Mexico-born Alejandro Perez, is a product of TUF: Latin America. After his impressive performance on the show, the UFC decided to absorb him. 

Perez is a natural Bantamweight fighter. His fans admire his ability to fight anywhere, on the feet or the ground.

After winning his debut fight in 2014, he remained loyal to the organization. He fought fighters like Eddie Wineland, Song Yadong, and many more during his career. 

Despite his age, he can still fight younger fighters. And with his recent performances, he might have the chance to improve his ranking further.

12. Alexa Grasso

Alexa Grasso is one of the rising stars of the women’s Flyweight division. Alexa was born in Guadalajara, Mexico, where she also started her martial arts journey. 

Her fans know Grasso as an excellent submission specialist and a durable fighter. Several of her recent fights have ended with a unanimous decision-win or by submission.

These performances have attracted more attention to her quality, and a couple more wins will make her closer to the title conversation. 

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With her young age and fresh skills, there’s a massive chance that Alexa will become a belt holder in the women’s Flyweight.

11. Irene Aldana

Irene Aldana is another female Mexican fighter to step foot inside the octagon. Aldana is #15 ranked women’s pound for pound as of November 2022.

Irene is known for her knock-out power and durability inside the octagon. Most of her fights ended via knockout or judges’ decision. 

One of her most significant KO wins was against Yana Kunitskaya. With constant pressure, Aldana knocked Yana out cold late in the first round. 

Irene also fought future Hall of Famer Holly Holm in a 5-round war in 2020. It proved to be one of her toughest challenges. Though Irene continues to put herself in the win column and earn her place on this list.

10. Gilbert Melendez

Gilbert Melendez at a face off
Michael Dunn, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Gilbert ‘El Nino’ Melendez is from Santa Ana, California but is of Mexican descent from his parents. Before entering the UFC, he was a prominent name in WEC, PRIDE, and Strike Force. 

El Nino was known to be a great all-around fighter. He can be dominant on the ground and up with good knockout power in his hands.

Melendez had his UFC debut in a title fight. He faced Benson Henderson in UFC on FOX. Gilbert dominated Benson on the ground but was mostly outstruck. Melendez lost via split decision. 

His next UFC fight was with Diego Sanchez. Melendez made the fight like a striking clinic. He failed to finish Sanchez, but he won in a decisive unanimous decision victory. Proving that his striking talents are developing.

9. Anthony Pettis

Anthony ‘Showtime’ Pettis was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin but his parents were Mexican. Pettis was a former UFC fighter who fought as a Welterweight, Lightweight, and Featherweight. 

Antony is known for his showmanship. One of his most notable knockout moves is his off-the-cage, flying kick KO. Showtime did this against Benson Henderson in WEC. 

Pettis became the Lightweight Champ in UFC 164 in his rematch against Henderson. He won the fight via submission and defended it immediately over Gilbert Melendez. 

Another notable thing about Pettis was his win over Wonderboy Thompson. He knocked his opponent via superman punch, making him the only guy to finish Thompson.  

8. Yair Rodriguez

Yair Rodriguez
Gobierno CDMX, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Yair ‘El Pantera’ Rodriguez was from Parral, Chihuahua, Mexico. Yair is among the most exciting Featherweights, thanks to his striking pedigree. 

El Pantera mostly became infamous because of his kicking ability. Most of his UFC highlights are clips of him performing kicks against high-level opponents. 

Yair is a young rising star that could be the next Featherweight title holder. At his age, he had already fought Franky Edgar, Brian Ortega, Max Holloway, Jeremy Stephens, and BJ Penn.

One of his best fights is against the Korean Zombie. He finished the fight with an elbow out of nowhere. This shows how creative he is in setting up his shots.

Rodriguez recently had a tough match over the former champ, Max Holloway. Yair lost. But he proved that he has what it takes to fight a champion. 

7. Tony Ferguson 

Tony Ferguson
MMAnytt, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Tony ‘El Cucuy’ Ferguson was born in Oxford, California but had a Mexican heritage from his lost biological father. Ferguson was the winner of Ultimate Fighter season 13. 

Tony established a huge fan base because of his fun personality and exciting fighting style. One of his signature moves is a D’arce choke.

Early in his career, Tony has an incredible 12-fight win streak. During this streak, he ran over fighters like Donal Cerrone, Kevin Lee, Rafael Dos Anjos, and more. 

Tony became the interim Lightweight champ after choking out Lee in the 3rd round. He was then to fight Khabib Nurmagomedov, but the matchup never came to be.

6. Nate Diaz

Nate Diaz in 2009
Bhenricksen, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Nate Diaz is the younger brother of Nick Diaz. Nate was born of Mexican and Anglo heritage. Together, they form the crowd favorites as the Diaz Brothers. 

Nate was known for his wreckless striking and excellent submission game. With his slender limbs, he can easily secure a guillotine or wrap up opponents when on the ground. 

He’s also adored for his top-level trash-talking that excites fans and generates hype for every time he steps into the cage.

Nate’s most famous move was the Stockton slap. It’s a solid slap in the face, his way of asserting dominance or making fun of his opponent inside the octagon. 

One of Diaz’s highlights in his career was when he choked out Conor McGregor. He was the first man ever to finish ‘The Notorious.’

5. Nick Diaz

Nick Diaz
MMAMytt, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Nick Diaz fights from Stockton, California but has a Mexican and Anglo heritage. He fought as a Welterweight during his career. Furthermore, Nick is the other half of the famous Diaz bros. 

With Nick’s gangster personality outside and inside the octagon, he captured the heart of fight fans. Despite failing to get the UFC gold, many fans still love him. 

One of his best fights was against BJ Penn. He outstruck Penn by a mile causing him to win unanimously. 

Diaz returned from retirement in UFC 266 to have a rematch against Lawler. He landed several clean shots but was on the receiving end of a TKO loss after basically giving up mid-fight. 

4. Dominick Cruz 

Dominick ‘The Dominator’ Cruz is the former 2-time undisputed Bantamweight King. Cruz was a talent from the WEC and was absorbed by the UFC later on. 

Dominick is known for his unusual stance that makes him unpredictable. He uses this to be elusive to his opponents. Cruz is also known for his trash-talking. 

Before entering the UFC, Cruz had an impressive 7-fight win streak in WEC. This streak enabled his first fight in the UFC atitle bout against Urijah Faber. 

After defending his belt several times, he relinquished the title and had his rest. Cruz came back and defeated the current champ, TJ Dillashaw. He’s still competing today.

3. Brandon Moreno

Brandon ‘The Assassin Baby’ Moreno is a former UFC Flyweight Champion. Brandon was from Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico.

Brandon came from The Ultimate Fighter series as a talent on the verge of getting cut out from the roster. After a series of defeats, he got himself together and bounced back. 

After a series of explosive wins, Moreno started to gain praise. After 3 straight wins against Kai Kara-France, Formiga, and Royval, he got his first title shot.

Brandon faced Figueiredo in a title fight where almost everyone expected him to lose. Both fighters showed heart and chin in a five-round fight that ended up as a draw. 

Moreno and Figueiredo agreed on a rematch at UFC 263. Brandon silenced all his doubters as he submitted the champ via RNC in round 3. 

A trilogy fight happened immediately. Again, it was a dog fight; both men landed some shots. In the end, Figi got his belt back via unanimous decision. But many fight fans continue to debate the decision.

2. Cain Velasquez

Cain Velasquez is the former 2-time UFC Heavyweight Champion from Sonora, Mexico. Cain was known for his world-class striking that slept opponents way larger than him. 

Cain shocked the world when he became the Heavyweight King for the first time. He knocked out the crowd favorite, Brock Lesnar, late in the first round. 

The champ would lose his belt against Junior Dos Santos on his first title defense. But Cain worked his way back into the spotlight and reclaimed his throne at UFC 155. 

After being the champ again, he defended the belt 2 times, even sealing a trilogy against Dos Santos via KO. 

1. Henry Cejudo

Henry Cejudo
MMAnytt, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Henry ‘CCC’ Cejudo is the greatest Mexican UFC fighter simply because of his unquestionable record. He is the only MMA fighter with 2 UFC belts and an Olympic gold medal in Wrestling. 

Cejudo is known to be a dominant wrestler but one of the worst trash-talkers. His fans loved his skills in fighting and cringe-worthy reactions and statements about his status.

Henry earned his Olympic gold in freestyle wrestling in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Later in his career, he transitioned to MMA and became a part of the UFC Flyweight roster. 

Cejudo had the Flyweight belt in his rematch against Demetrious Johnson. It was a clinical faceoff that was difficult to judge, but Cejudo won a split-decision victory. 

After being the Flyweight King, Henry went to the Bantamweight division. He knocked out TJ Dillashaw early in round 1 and made UFC history.

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