UFC Fighters and Their Fighting Game Alter Egos

Walt J.Correspondent IApril 5, 2012

UFC Fighters and Their Fighting Game Alter Egos

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    As a child of the '80s, I was a huge fan of video games. The greatest era for me was the explosion of fighting games in the early '90s.

    The two powerhouses in those days were the Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter franchises. In the later part of the decade, games like Tekken—and, to a much lesser extent, Virtua Fighter—came on the scene. The concept of these games was to match fighters with varying backgrounds and different fighting styles against one another to determine the best.

    Sound familiar?

    Mixed martial arts—as we know it today—began with the concept of matching the best fighters of various fighting styles from around the world. In a tribute to one of the greatest eras in gaming, here's a look at some of the UFC notables and which of the biggest fighting game characters they most resemble.

Quinton "Rampage" Jackson

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    Power, strength and attitude are all attributes of the former UFC Light Heavyweight champion. Unfortunately, given his last few fights, it appears that the desire may be gone.

    Though a skilled wrestler during his PRIDE days, Rampage prefers nothing more than beating his opponent down to bloody pulp or resorting to a good old-fashioned powerslam.

Quinton Jackson Is Goro

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    Series: Mortal Kombat

    Game Debut: Mortal Kombat I

    If you managed to survive the three endurance rounds, Goro awaited you in his lair. His loud roar, superhuman strength and extra limbs made him a pretty nasty customer. 

    Only thing missing is a huge chain around his neck.

James Toney

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    I think I'm within my rights to say that James Toney gave arguably one of the worst performances in the history of the Octagon. He came into the fight with literally a puncher's chance.

    Why was he even in the ring?

    Here's an idea: Unless you plan to use all four limbs, stay out of MMA.

James Toney Is Balrog

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    Series: Street Fighter

    Game Debut: Street Fighter II

    Balrog is one of the worst video game bosses in history. How can someone face karate experts, sumo wrestlers, electrified green men from Brazil and Muay Thai fighters and then face a one-dimensional boxer?

    Who over at Capcom thought this was a good idea?

Cung Le

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    Cung Le is an accomplished Sanshou fighter, kickboxer and taekwondo expert. This guy's legs have put away some of the best fighters in the sport. He even went toe-to-toe with legend Wanderlei Silva, albeit in a losing effort.

    No matter what, Le brings it.

Cung Le Is Marshall Law

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    Series: Tekken

    Game Debut: Tekken I

    Marshall Law was one of the most skilled characters in the Tekken series. His style and image mimicked the great Bruce Lee himself.

    Since Cung Le played Law in the 2010 Tekken motion picture, he was the natural choice.

Brock Lesnar

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    Big, strong, loud, boorish...all words that describe former UFC Heavyweight Champion Brock Lesnar. He would use his freakish strength to pound you, then he would talk tons of smack, WWE style. Even more if your last name rhymes with "tier."

    Once you got past the power and the taunting, though, he was a pretty one-dimensional fighter. However, that was IF you got past it.

Brock Lesnar Is Shao Kahn

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    Series: Mortal Kombat

    Game Debut: Mortal Kombat II

    I speak from experience when I say I spent afternoons after school trying to defeat the immortal Emperor of Outworld. His constant taunting just made him that much more annoying. 

    Once I finally got a handle on him, he wasn't much of a challenge. Maybe Lesnar needed a sledgehammer like Kahn—couldn't hurt, could it?

Roy Nelson

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    Roy Nelson is an intriguing fighter to say the least. He's a good striker and has really good jiu-jitsu and a great chin. What stands out is his love for having the biggest belly in the heavyweight division.

    Come on, Roy, show some pride! What character would even equate to him?

Roy Nelson Is E. Honda

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    Series: Street Fighter

    Game Debut: Street Fighter II

    Edmund Honda is your favorite sumo's favorite sumo. Watch his quick hands and his ability to squeeze the life out of Blanka in the video. 

    Like Nelson, Honda is a strong fighter, but let's talk about that midsection. Can we mix in some core work please?

Michael Bisping

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    Michael Bisping is one Brit who you do not want to piss off. He's got some great striking and a fiery attitude to go with it.

    Can this guy even get through a press conference without sticking his finger in someone's face?

Michael Bisping Is Paul Phoenix

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    Series: Tekken

    Game Debut: Tekken I

    Paul was a great fighter and always a top contestant in the Tekken tournament, yet he could never quite reach the top of the mountain. He was tough, mean and had a serious chip on his shoulder.

    I wonder if he was also British?

Dan Hardy

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    Dan Hardy has always seemed interesting to me. Maybe it's the tough talk or the red mohawk, but he appears to be an okay guy.

    As a fighter, he does have some talent. He'll win some fights, but probably won't be a contender anytime soon, if ever again.

    GSP exposed his lack of a ground game and everyone after him capitalized on it. Hopefully Hardy will start stringing together the wins again.

Dan Hardy Is Johnny Cage

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    Series: Mortal Kombat

    Game Debut: Mortal Kombat I

    Johnny Cage built his career on trying to prove that he could hang with the best fighters. While he could give a good showing, he was never anything special.

    Think I'm wrong? Answer me this: Have you ever ended the game with Cage?

    I didn't think so.

Fedor Emelianenko

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    Yes I know, Fedor has never been in the UFC. This was more about the character I came across and Fedor was who I instantly thought of.

    Let's see, a strong Russian wrestler with enormous power in both hands...

Fedor Emelianenko Is Zangief

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    Series: Street Fighter

    Game Debut: Street Fighter II

    One of the first fighting game characters centered around grappling; I think this one was a given.

Frankie Edgar

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    Frankie Edgar is one of the toughest guys to step inside the Octagon. Naturally small for his division, he has been continuously discounted and disregarded.

    Regardless, he continues to deliver the pain to anyone who opposes him (minus Ben Henderson) and has ascended to the top of the lightweight ranks.

Frankie Edgar Is Jin

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    Series: Tekken

    Game Debut: Tekken III

    Disregarded by his father and on his own by his teen years, no one gave Jin a shot. Trained by his grandfather, Jin fought his way to the top of the King of Iron Fist Tournament and the Tekken corporation.

    Not bad for someone who no one thought had a chance anyway.

Georges St-Pierre

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    Georges St-Pierre's stranglehold on the welterweight division began approximately four years ago.

    GSP's style is an anomaly. It is forever changing and he's the best at preparing a game plan for a fight. He can beat you standing, on the ground and even at what is supposedly your strength.

    GSP wins any way possible.

Georges St. Pierre Is Shang Tsung

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    Series: Mortal Kombat

    Game Debut: Mortal Kombat I

    The evil sorcerer Shang Tsung has been stealing the souls of his opponents since the beginning. His ability to morph into any fighter makes him even more dangerous. 

    Could you imagine fighting a guy who could then become you and fight your style better than you can? I guess that's how Josh Koscheck feels.

Brian Stann

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    What's not to like about Brian Stann? He's a tough fighter, war hero and just an all-around honorable human being.

    With more training, especially on the ground, I see no reason he couldn't someday contend for the title.

Brian Stann Is Guile

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    Series: Street Fighter

    Game Debut: Street Fighter II

    This was an easy one to pick. At first glance, Guile didn't appear to be that great of a fighter, but if you knew how to use him, he could be one of the best in the game.

    It still angers me till this day that this character was so horribly portrayed in film by Jean-Claude Van Damme himself. I made my feelings more than known in a previous article.

Jon "Bones" Jones

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    At age 24, Jon Jones has been running through the UFC's light heavyweight division uncontested. He soundly defeated three former champions in 10 months. His rise is well documented and now as champion, the target is on him

    He looks to make his third defense of his UFC belt later this month. His style has been too confusing and too good for his opponents to stop.

    Can anyone penetrate the armor that is "Bones"?

Jon Jones Is Yoshimitsu

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    Series: Tekken, Soulcalibur

    Game Debut: Tekken I, Soulcalibur I

    One of the stranger characters in any of the fighting games, Yoshimitsu uses fast, pinpoint attacks. His most common weapons—aside from the sword—are his flying knee and his dangerous spinning attacks. 

    Hmm...was little Johnny Bones spending his youth practicing these moves in the mirror?

Anderson Silva

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    Anderson Silva has ruled the UFC's middleweight division with an iron fist for over five years now. He has defeated challenger after challenger, with few of them posing any legitimate threat.

    His quick and precise striking are just pieces of what makes up the arsenal that Silva possesses.

Anderson Silva Is Liu Kang

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    Series: Mortal Kombat

    Game Debut: Mortal Kombat I

    Liu Kang has been the hero of the Mortal Kombat series since its inception. Not only that, but he was won practically every single tournament since he left the Shaolin temple to compete. His moves are simple, yet precise and effective. 

    At some point, wouldn't you think one of the Outworld lords would be able to handle this guy?

Junior Dos Santos

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    Junior dos Santos literally pounded his way to the top of the UFC Heavyweight division. He has tremendous punching power and can almost knock out his opponents at will.

    JDS hits with bad intentions.

Junior Dos Santos Is Jax

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    Series: Mortal Kombat

    Game Debut: Mortal Kombat II

    Jax is a hard-hitting special forces major out to save his friend Sonya Blade. In MK3, he is equipped with bionic arms that further boost his power.

    While JDS' power is au naturale, his next opponent may be using a little "artificial engineering."

Lyoto Machida

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    Lyoto Machida has made karate relevant in MMA once again. "The Dragon" uses precise counter-striking, drawn from his base of Shotokan karate.  

    After two great fights against Muay Thai expert "Shogun" Rua, could we someday see the rubber match to conclude rivalry?

Lyoto Machida Is Ryu

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    Series: Street Fighter

    Game DebutStreet Fighter I

    This one seemed to be a given. Ryu is fierce and hard hitting. He waits for his opponent to strike before delivering his infamous uppercut.

    He's also a known rival of sub-boss Sagat, a skilled Muay Thai fighter.

    Do you see where this is going?

Mauricio "Shogun" Rua

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    Maurcio Rua felt he was robbed in his first fight against "The Dragon." I felt the fight could've gone either way.

    But he left no doubt the second time around. He's a fantastic striker with great Muay Thai who delivered some brutal kicks to Machida's rib cage.

    Having said that, you can probably guess who his counterpart is...

Mauricio Rua Is Sagat

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    Series: Street Fighter

    Game Debut: Street Fighter I

    Apparently Karate vs. Muay Thai was a hot button even in the video game world. Sagat is a brutal striker who wants nothing more than to prove to Ryu once again the he is the best.

    Should Machida and Rua fight once again, I may have to break out the old Sega Genesis to do some simulations.

     

    Follow Walt J. as he gives his no-holds-barred opinions on the NFL, MMA and other sports topics on his blog, Area49sports.com. You can also follow him on Twitter @area49sports.