One of the things that makes the fighting sports so enchanting for fans is that every single contest is an epic story in miniature. Whether it is a three-round amateur bout or a 12-round world title tilt, the process of preparation and the anticipation before the final test will always echo with the archetypal, heroic themes.
But for the fighter who keeps moving forward, the fights themselves weave together into the story of his career. And some fights end up being chapters that stand out. All fighters, especially the great ones, end up having fights that define them, moments where they hit their highest marks on the big stage.
The eight fighters discussed in this story are not necessarily in the pound-for-pound top 10, though there is certainly plenty of overlap.
But these are the fighters I currently see as the biggest names in the sport, at a global level, in terms of generating fan interest and media attention.