MMA fans undeniably love a good knockout. There’s something about that intense moment where the true power and technique of these combatants comes together for a truly breathtaking scene that leaves fans on the edge of their seats.
Here is a top ten list of some of the most exciting knockouts in recent memory that embody the raw athleticism and skills of some of the most dangerous mixed martial arts fighters on the planet.
10. Amateur Biaggio Ali Walsh Stuns as He Knocks Out Experienced Fighter Tom Graesser
I wanted to start off with perhaps my personal favorite KO of the last year. Biaggio Ali Walsh exuded the legacy of his grandfather, none other than Muhammad Ali, as he made his much-anticipated debut in the PFL cage last November at the Hulu Theater in New York.
In an extraordinary amateur bout that marked the beginning of the 2022 PFL Championships preliminaries, Ali Walsh (2-1 amateur) strategically dismantled his opponent, Tom Graesser (1-4 amateur), culminating in a knockout 45 seconds into the fight.
Right from the initial bell, Ali Walsh showcased a formidable display of power, visibly rocking Graesser, who suffered a gushing cut on his forehead within seconds. In the climactic sequence, Ali Walsh unleashed an overhand right, swiftly followed by a devastating right uppercut, and ultimately sealed the deal with a conclusive right hand.
9. Francis Ngannou Presses the Reset Button on Alistair Overeem
Undoubtedly, this knockout witnessed in the UFC’s octagon will forever be etched in our minds as one of the most chilling ones to date, leaving extremely little room for debate.
Despite Alistair Overeem’s valiant effort to face off against “the Predator,” it was Francis Ngannou at the end of the day who mercilessly dismantled Overeem, leaving no doubt about his dominance. Ngannou achieved this feat by delivering a bone-shattering uppercut that nearly convinced us that Overeem may have actually died.
8. Holly Holm Secures Her Place as the UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion By Taking Down MMA Star Ronda Rousey With a Vicious Head Kick
Holly Holm sent shockwaves through the MMA community as she delivered a devastating knockout to the seemingly invincible Ronda Rousey in the headline bout of UFC 193. The electrifying event took place at the packed Etihad Arena in Melbourne in November 2015, and is still regarded as one of the most monumental upsets in UFC history.
Holm triumphed over the reigning bantamweight champion just 59 seconds into the second round.
Although the highly anticipated rematch between Holm and Rousey, now a WWE superstar, never materialized, Holm recently made a triumphant return to the Octagon, showcasing her ever-evolving skills against Yana Santos at UFC San Antonio.
7. Mike Chandler Turns the Lights Off on Tony Ferguson at UFC 274
In May 2022, Mike Chandler’s explosive power took center stage during his bout against Tony Ferguson at UFC 274.
The first round witnessed Chandler being knocked down by a powerful left hook from Ferguson in the early minutes. Despite the setback, Chandler showed resilience and managed to regain his composure. Ferguson relentlessly pressed forward, but Chandler surprised him with a well-executed double-leg takedown. Despite being cut by an elbow from the bottom, Chandler withstood all of Ferguson’s submission attempts.
Just when it seemed like the vintage Ferguson was resurfacing, Chandler unleashed a devastating front kick that connected with precision, resulting in a bone-chilling knockout a mere 17 seconds into the second round. This was an unprecedented occurrence for Ferguson, who had never experienced such a complete TKO like this one in all of his 32 professional fights.
6. Amanda Nunes Dismantles Women’s MMA Giant Cris Cyborg
In a highly anticipated clash that will be remembered as one of the most significant female fights in UFC history, bantamweight champion Nunes (17-4) showcased her prowess by moving up in weight and delivering a stunning knockout to the formidable featherweight champion, Cris “Cyborg” Justino.
It took just 51 seconds into the opening round for Nunes to land a powerful overhand right that sealed the victory. This championship bout served as a captivating co-headliner for UFC 232.
5. Weili Zhang Gets Knocked Into Yesterday by Rose Namajunas
Despite being considered a slight underdog in the fight against Weili, Namajunas swiftly demonstrated that underestimating her would be a grave mistake.
In a matter of moments, “Thug” unleashed a flawless head kick that sent the defending champion crashing to the canvas. Seizing the opportunity, the American swiftly mounted her opponent and unleashed a barrage of powerful hammer fists, prompting the referee to intervene and stop the fight.
Initially frustrated over the decision, Weili soon recognized the reality that she had been convincingly outperformed by her opponent.
4. Dan Henderson Shuts Down Michael Bisping
There’s no doubt that Dan Henderson’s brutal victory over Bisping at UFC 100 in July 2009 must occupy a prominent position on any list of unforgettable endings.
Having coached against each other on that season’s The Ultimate Fighter, Henderson finally had the opportunity to face Bisping inside the octagon, where he delivered one of the most devastating punches followed by a diving barrage of shots. It was a moment that delighted some as Bisping received a taste of his own medicine.
3. Conor McGregor Reminds Everyone Why He is “Notorious” During Jose Aldo Match
Considered one of the greatest knockouts in UFC history, Conor McGregor’s 13-second finish of Jose Aldo in December 2015 stands out like a beacon.
McGregor, then the sport’s fastest-rising star and interim titleholder, entered the fight against the legendary Aldo, who had been undefeated for a decade. Despite facing a highly skilled opponent, McGregor’s mental dominance was evident as Aldo appeared tense.
The unexpected knockout catapulted McGregor to new heights, solidifying his status as the sport’s most recognizable figure and the undisputed featherweight champion.
2. Anderson Silva Levels Vitor Belfort in the First Round
Anderson Silva, considered the best pound-for-pound fighter, entered his eighth title defense on the heels of lackluster performances.
However, facing Vitor Belfort at UFC 126, Silva showcased his greatness with an iconic knockout, reaffirming his exceptional skills and reminding everyone of his undeniable talent in one of the most memorable moments in MMA history.
1. Ben Askren Blasted Into the Shadow Realm by Jorge Masvidal
Jorge Masvidal made history at UFC 239 with the fastest knockout in UFC’s records. Within seconds of the fight’s start, Masvidal leaped into the air with a flying knee, connecting with Ben Askren’s face and rendering him unconscious.
Masvidal didn’t stop there; he followed up with a couple of strikes before the referee intervened. The entire sequence lasted only five seconds, cementing Masvidal’s remarkable achievement.
What are some great knockouts you feel should have been added to the list? Let us know in the comments below and across social media!