Matt Hughes is the most dominant Welterweight Champion that the UFC has ever seen. With a 43-7 record, and being victorious in an unprecedented nine title fights, Hughes has most definitely secured a spot in the UFC Hall of Fame.
With wins over the likes of BJ Penn, Georges St. Pierre, Royce Gracie, Frank Trigg, and Carlos Newton, there is little doubt this "Country Boy" has survived even through the changes the sport has seen in the last decade. His latest victory over rival, and former opposing coach on The Ultimate Fighter, Matt Serra, has left the possibility of retirement looming in the midst.
No matter what Matt Hughes chooses to do, no doubt it will be the decision in the best interests of him and his family. Mr. Hughes, I salute you.
These are my top Hughes moments.
When Matt defeated Carlos Newton at UFC 34, he became the Welterweight Champion for the first time. The victory was somewhat controversial because Newton was KO'd from a slam delivered by Hughes while applying a triangle choke. Hughes answered any doubters with a rematch against Newton at UFC 38, where Matt TKO'd Carlos in the fourth round.
Frank Trigg talked a lot of trash about Matt Hughes, and still does to this day. Both times when they met in the octagon at UFC 45 and UFC 52 the outcome was the same...Hughes wins by first round Rear Naked Choke.
In their first match at UFC 46, BJ Penn was able to catch Hughes in a Rear Naked Choke, but at UFC 63 it was a different story. Hughes locked up Penn and pounded him into a TKO in the third round.
At UFC 60, Matt took on legend and UFC Hall of Famer Royce Gracie. Matt had an arm submission locked in early, and probably could have finished the fight from there. Instead of seriously injuring the crafty veteran who would show no quit, Matt chose to take the back mount position and pound Gracie into a TKO victory in the first round.
At UFC 50, a young up-and-coming star named Georges St. Pierre would take a shot at the limelight and face one of his own idols in the sport. The pressure proved to be to much for the future champion as Hughes caught Georges in an armbar and won in the very first round.
This grudge match had been brewing for quite some time, but injuries to both fighters postponed the fight twice. Matt Serra made his dislike for Hughes very public ever since their interaction on The Ultimate Fighter season four.
Then, in TUF season six, the two came back, this time as opposing coaches. Words were exchanged and the bad blood boiled. Finally, when the two met, it was another dominating performance from Matt Hughes. He won the fight by unanimous decision and offered his rival a handshake and show of respect.