Dirty Fighters: 5 UFC Stars Who Fought Dirty

5 UFC Star That Were Dirty Fighters

Fighting in MMA is a chaotic business and even the fights featuring the very best of the best have the potential of turning into chaos. The stakes are high and fighters try and use everything they can to their advantage, including the occasional dirty move here and there. However, some UFC stars made an eme for themselves for all the wrong reasons, as dirty fighters that have little respect for the rules.

5 Dirty Fighters From The UFC

Arguably, every fighter has had a moment where they did something outside the bounds of the rules. Intentionally or not, it does not matter. Dirty fighters are the ones that intentionally bend or break the rules right up to the limit of being penalized or DQed, get away with it, and integrate such behavior into their game.

As incredible athletes as they might be, this is certainly not sportsman-liek behavior. The following five dirty fighters from the UFC had their own ways of playing the system to their advantage, or sometimes, just being outright obvious about what they were doing.

Jon Jones

Yeah, UFC light heavyweight champion and once beloved by many, Jon Jones is on the list of dirty fighters. If you’re wondering what about, you must not have seen, well, any of his fights.

Jones was notorious for poking his opponent in the eyes. He always justified it by measuring distance, but he intentionally held his fingers open and loose as he did, actually aiming for the eyes. It did happen in every single fight he fought in.

He also used oblique kicks, much to the annoyance of his opponents, although, technically these are legal, just thought of as a dirty move among fighters.

There is of course all the PED drama involving Jones, but then again, who is not on steroids in MMA and BJJ these days?

Cheick Kongo

Kongo was a heavyweight in the UFC who fans loved, as he had some real barnburners inside the octagon. The kickboxer had a whole array of dirty moves that he deployed during fights, which included grabbing the shorts, hanging on to the fence, and using illegal techniques under the veil of “not intentional”.

If Jones was obvious with the eye pokes, then Kongo was blatantly obvious with the use of groin punches, which he deemed “accidental. there were also illegal knees to a downed opponent, illegal elbows, and strikes to the back of the head that did not seem like they happened accidentally.

In fact, he publically admitted that he kneed Mirko CroCop in the groin because he complained too much during their fight at UFC 75.

Rousimar Palhares

I guess Rousimar Palhares needs no introduction as he is the poster boy of dirty fighters in combat sports. His behavior was not exclusive to the UFC only, as he keep doing the same thing in any MMA and grappling promotion he ever fought in.

Palhares’ crimes were straightforward – he would not let go of submission even after the opponent tapped, and kept on tapping for quite a long time. Being a leg lock specialist only made things worse in terms of the damage caused to his opponent’s limbs.

Tomasz Drwal was his first victim in the UFC, and cost Palhares a reprimand and warning that didn’t seem to catch on. When he fought Mike Pierce next he did the same thing, torquing his leg long after he tapped. The UFC let him go as a result of the incident.

Palhares carried his dirty fighting tactics to WSOF where he repeated the same antics against Jon Fitch (kneebar) and eventually broke Jake Shields’ arm with a Kimura, once again being let go from the promotion because of the incident.

Gilbert Yvel

Yvel is the man to study as the master of dirty fighters. He used every possible trick to make sure he got an advantage, masterfully utilizing everything from eye gauges and t to even biting an opponent, Tyson-style in his quest to win.

His biggest offense, however, happened outside the UFC when he fought faced Atte Backman at Fight Festival 12. Long story short Yvel ended up punching and attacking the referee, which ended up with his immediate DQ.

Gerard Gordeau

Gerard Gordeau is a kickboxer who fought in the very first UFC event. When he faced off against Royce Gracie, he broke the only two rules that were in effect that night: no eye gauging and no biting. He actually bit Royce’s ear in an attempt to prevent Gracie from submitting him, and we all know how that turned out.

What makes Gordeau stand out from the other dirty fighters on the list is that he managed to be dirty ina period where there were only a handful of rules and barely any illegal moves. That’s something.

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