There are many aspects of mixed martial arts that are important. One of the most important, under-appreciated aspects of MMA are leg kicks.
Leg kicks help set up other moves, such as strikes and takedowns. Powerful leg kicks can also take away power from an opponents striking as well as make them tentative.
Let's take a look at the fighters who have the best leg kicks in MMA today.
Bas Rutten: He may be known for his vicious body kicks and knees, but Rutten also had very strong leg kicks. Not surprising for a guy of his background (black belts in kyokushin and taekwondo), he ended his fight with Ruben Villareal with several leg kicks.
Mirko Cro Cop: Another guy who is unrecognized for his leg kicks because of his deadly head kicks, Mirko Cro Cop had some of the best leg kicks. In his time in Pride, he sent Hidehiko Yoshida packing with some vicious leg kicks.
Pedro Rizzo: Randy Couture can attest to the power of Rizzo's leg kicks, as he has a permanent indent in his thigh after one of their encounters. Rizzo's leg kicks were wicked, helping end bouts against Ken Shamrock and Dan Severn.
Marco Ruas: Ruas never ended a bout due to leg kicks, but they were definitely one of his many feared weapons. A legendary vale tudo fighter, Ruas used his lethal leg kicks to set up finishes against his opponent.
Alistair Overeem: Overeem is a horse (pun intended). All of his strikes are devastating, but his leg kicks are especially wicked. He may have ended his bout with Brock Lesnar with a body kick, but believe me, his leg kicks are insane.
Tyson Griffin: Tyson Griffin may have the most underrated leg kicks in MMA, especially since he hails from a wrestling background, not a kickboxing background. Griffin has very strong legs, allowing him to put a sick amount of torque in each leg kick.