Creating New Nicknames for UFC's Biggest Stars
With poise and precision, the UFC's biggest stars have climbed their way to unprecedented stardom.
From Anderson Silva to Alexander Gustafsson, Jose Aldo to Ronda Rousey and Georges St-Pierre to Urijah Faber, the names on this list speaks for themselves.
But through all the prolific finishes, top rankings and championship defeats, do their nicknames do them justice? How would it look if their catchy namesakes were based on their recent performances?
Well, look no further. Here's new nicknames for each ginormous star currently carrying the UFC banner.
Demetrious "Flash" Johnson
Previous nickname: "Mighty Mouse"
Demetrious Johnson isn't all that mighty. Sure he possesses elite technique and devilish defense, but the UFC flyweight champion makes a living off his speed, not power.
To give him any other nickname than "Flash" seems ill-willed if you ask me.
Vitor "The Ageless" Belfort
Previous nickname: "The Phenom"
Time and time again Vitor Belfort has proven his critics wrong and dismantled the challenge that stands in his way.
Whether it was Michael Bisping or Luke Rockhold, Belfort has shown a knack for implementing new techniques and finishes otherwise absent from his arsenal so late into his career.
He's truly an ageless wonder.
Benson "Too Close to Call" Henderson
Previous nickname: "Smooth"
Not only has Benson Henderson not finished a fight in the UFC, but two of his three lightweight title defenses were sealed by split decision.
Now Henderson is one heck of a fighter, but his inability to put fighters away and separate himself on the scorecard speaks wonders as to what kind of champion he truly is.
Alistair "I Swear Bigfoot Is Real" Overeem
Previous nicknames: "The Demolition Man"; "The Reem"
There's really nothing to say about Alistair Overeem. He hasn't looked the same since failing a drug test back in 2012 and he certainly didn't have his wits to himself when Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva made him look like a school girl at UFC 156.
At this point, a towering Brazilian with ham hocks for hands is the only thing haunting and driving Overeem's return to action.
Dan "Dentures" Henderson
Previous nickname: "Hendo"
This is not a play on Dan Henderson's age even though he's starting to lose a bit of pizazz inside the Octagon.
No, instead it's a direct mention of his teeth. Henderson literally is missing a handful of upper choppers that better resemble a bed-ridden senior citizen waking up in the middle of the night to cleanse his dentures.
Besides that, the toothless legend rides on.
Georges "Hush" St-Pierre
Previous nickname: "Rush"
Even after a lengthy comeback from a seriously brutal knee injury UFC welterweight champion and pound-for-pound great Georges St-Pierre continues to quiet the competition.
From Carlos Condit to Nick Diaz, GSP has shown an elevated consistency to silence his critics, remain dangerous and do it with a Canadian smile on his face.
Wanderlei "Roller Coaster" Silva
Previous nickname: "The Axe Murderer"
Consistency is not part of Wanderlei Silva's vocabulary. Instead, the legendary Brazilian opts to throw all inhibition away, sprint full steam ahead and see what happens.
Now, while that type of dangerous thinking has secured Silva with some of the best knockouts in recent memory, it has also befuddled his chances of prolonging success.
To each their own.
Cain "Tidal Wave" Velasquez
Previous nickname: N/A
How boss is Cain Velasquez for not having a nickname? It's downright glorious. Something unseen in the sport today.
But for the sake of this article, as well as his budding dominance, Velasquez will be crowned with a more serious and prolific nickname.
For he has literally swallowed the UFC heavyweight division whole and has washed away each and every contender.
Ronda "Arm Robber" Rousey
Previous nickname: "Rowdy"
Like shooting fish in a barrel, Ronda Rousey can steal a victory away from any woman in the world by simply applying some manly pressure to their arm.
It's a technique that has served her well in the past and should continue to fuel her success in the future.
Alexander "The Lone Wolf" Gustafsson
Previous nickname: "The Mauler"
By process of elimination, and Jon Jones' dominant past, Alexander Gustafsson stands as the only relevant contender in the UFC light heavyweight division ready to challenge the great one.
The Swede not only stacks up to Jones' physicality, but he possesses dynamic striking, evolving submissions and tactical precision.
If any one was to beat "Bones", it'd be the 26-year-old wolf.
Junior "Edson Barboza" dos Santos
Previous nickname: "Cigano"
Who would have thought it, Junior dos Santos knocking out Mark Hunt with a third-round spinning heel kick?
That's like picking the New York Jets to win the Super Bowl and winning.
But beyond the sheer odds and natural improbability of something like that actually occurring, it was nice to see JDS empty his tool shed, take a page out of Edson Barboza's book and shock the world.
Kudos, Cain Velasquez's next victim.
Johny "Look Ma, No Hands" Hendricks
Previous nickname: "Bigg Rigg"
Johny Hendricks is known for his power. It's not a secret and it's not something the heavy-handed welterweight contender is going to shy away from in the future.
But when Hendricks can't lay his pipe bomb hands on an unsuspecting chin, he can still win. He still has a wrestling pedigree capable of going toe-to-toe with any welterweight in the business.
Just look at his 12 takedowns opposite the gritty and formidable Carlos Condit at UFC 158. Dude can grind.
Jose "The King" Aldo
Previous nickname: "Scarface"
Is it safe to finally say it? Can we all now come to an agreement that Jose Aldo is arguably the best fighter in the world?
Sure he doesn't possess the public persona of a Anderson Silva, Jon Jones or Georges St-Pierre, but what hasn't Aldo done that these other three champions have?
He's beaten the best of the best, he's tackled former champions, he's answered all the calls, he hasn't tasted defeat since 2006 and he's still only 26 years old.
If Anthony Pettis falls, Aldo's spot atop the pound-for-pound throne is well-warranted.
Lyoto "The Mantis" Machida
Previous nickname: "The Dragon"
Lyoto Machida is not a dragon. He does not spit fire, he isn't ferocious and he doesn't attack first.
Instead, the Brazilian is bettered suited as a praying mantis, one often seen waiting in the tall grass ready to pounce on unsuspecting prey.
The bottom line is that Machida never strikes first, rarely shows aggression and doesn't wear his emotions on his sleeve. He's as cool, calm and collected as they come.
Michael "The Gatekeeper" Bisping
Previous nickname: "The Count"
It's sad to say but Michael Bisping is no longer a title contender. That's to say he ever was in a division led by the greatest fighter of all time.
But the fact of the matter is that the Brit has never been able to get over the hump. He couldn't withstand Chael Sonnen's pressure and couldn't stomach Vitor Belfort's striking.
All of that has left Bisping title-less and has transformed him into one of the best gatekeepers in the sport today, minus "Minotauro" Nogueira of course.
Jon "Who Knows" Jones
Previous nickname: "Bones"
What's next for Jon Jones? Is it a long-awaited battle with Alexander Gustafsson? Or maybe a legendary super fight with Anderson Silva?
Or maybe, just maybe, Jones will finally keep his word and make his way up the heavyweight ladder.
Whichever path he chooses the 25-year-old will encounter unparalleled success. But for now, nobody really knows what the UFC has in store for their once-in-a-generation superstar.
Frankie "Grind Time" Edgar
Previous nickname: "The Answer"
Frankie Edgar has lost three-straight title fights dating back to 2012, but what the former lightweight champion continues to do is wield his will, absorb damage, inflict his own punishment and grind away at every turn.
His chances of ever throwing a UFC belt over his shoulder again may slowly be fading away, but the 31-year-old keeps chugging along.
Urijah "The Comeback Kid" Faber
Previous nickname: "The California Kid"
Like Rocky in Rocky II or Matt Hughes against Frank Trigg in their rematch, Urijah Faber has defied the odds, tucked his head into his chest and has made a prolific return to title contention.
With back-to-back submissions over two top 10 UFC bantamweights, Faber has once again put his name up for championship discussion.
All of this coming after a rumored cut earlier this year if Faber didn't get his act together.
Chael "The Voice" Sonnen
Previous nickname: "The American Gangsta"; "The People's Champ"
Is Chael Sonnen really a gangster? Can he be the people's champion if he's never won a title?
All shenanigans aside, I think we all know the answers to those questions. But what about the answer to this question; does it really matter?
Quite frankly, no. Sonnen continues to chirp his way into big fight after big fight and nobody really seems to care, except other fighters prying for the same opportunity.
The fact of the matter is that people love Sonnen for his hype factor. He can turn any backyard brawl into a televised bonanza jam-packed with media attention, overflowing money sacks and unscripted one-liners.
Anderson "The Light Heavyweight Killa" Silva
Previous nickname: "The Spider"
Anderson Silva has not only cemented his legacy as the greatest fighter in the history of the sport by dismantling every middleweight known to man, but he's started a new streak one weight class higher.
Like a kid in a candy store, Silva has feasted on opposing light heavyweights with complete and utter ease, making them look like slow buffoons in the process.
I guess 185 wasn't enough. The Brazilian is out for blood and he's moving up to spill it.
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