BJ Penn and Six UFC Champions Who Set the Blueprint for Defeating Wrestlers

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BJ Penn and Six UFC Champions Who Set the Blueprint for Defeating Wrestlers
Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images

Just last week at UFC 130, we saw the importance of using wrestling skills in winning a fight and using proper wrestling defense to avoid losing.

The former was highlighted during the title-eliminator match between Clay Guida and Anthony Pettis, while the latter was showcased in the main event matchup between Rampage Jackson and Matt Hamill.

Guida managed to earn a unanimous decision against upcoming star "Showtime" Pettis by utilizing his wrestling in controlling where the fight happens and holding it there for the majority of the fight, spoiling Pettis' title bid in the process.

Meanwhile, Jackson, who also won his main-event fight, showed great counter-wrestling ability in his fight with Hamill. Jackson gave the former wrestling champion no chance of taking the fight to the ground.  

The two fights set different talks in MMA forums, with some criticizing the way wrestling was used to win and some praising the way wrestling was avoided to notch a victory. 

But even before these fights have occurred, wrestling has already been the talk of the fighting community. Some say that the skill is the key factor in winning championships, as four of UFC's six current champions utilize the skill well in winning. UFC analyst and commentator Joe Rogan has even been heard saying that the skill is the most important foundation in mixed martial arts.

However, there are many who are criticizing fighters who are taking advantage of their wrestling skills to win matches, as most of them are considered "boring" fights (e.g. John Fitch). Some of those who criticize are even fighters themselves (e.g. Dan Hardy) who are denied of winning a title.

Nonetheless, there are fighters who let their skills do the talking and won against wrestlers by using superb skills. They have shown what a champion is made of and that one skill is not enough to beat them.

Here is my list of former and current UFC champions who set the blueprint in defeating wrestlers.    

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