The 25 Most Hated Fighters in MMA History

Matt Juul@@MattchidaMMAContributor IIINovember 4, 2011

The 25 Most Hated Fighters in MMA History

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    Mixed martial arts has some of the most dynamic personalities in all of sports.

    With fighters vying to capture the public's attention in order to hype up their names, some have drawn more ire than praise from fans.

    Whether it's due to there pre-fight diatribes, in the cage antics or off-putting personalities, some fighters are just plain hated by certain sectors of the MMA fandom.

    Here are the 25 most hated fighters in the history of MMA.

25. Nate Marquardt

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    While fighting in the UFC, former middleweight contender Nate Marquardt drew praise from fans for his skillful performances against some of the elite of the division.

    But when Marquardt was set to make the move to welterweight at UFC on Versus 4, he subsequently lost the affection of UFC President Dana White and the public alike when he failed to gain medical clearance due to his use of testosterone replacement therapy.

    White was so perturbed with Marquardt that he fired him via a video posted on his Twitter account.

    Now fighting across the pond for BAMMA, Marquardt has not only lost his job in the UFC, but the respect of fans as well. 

24. Paul Daley

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    Another fighter given the pink slip from White for his unsightly antics, Paul Daley has joined the plethora of bad boy fighters in MMA.

    Daley lost his job with the UFC when he sucker punched former top contender Josh Koscheck after their fight at UFC 113.

    But his actions against Koscheck were just the icing on the cake, as the welterweight fighter has come in overweight in four out of his last 10 bouts.

    Daley's lack of professionalism has lost him a lot of fans.

23. Kalib Starnes

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    Ultimate Fighter alum Kalib Starnes has become an infamous character in the shows history.

    Coming into the UFC with an undefeated record, the Canadian saw a huge downward spiral in his career with his lackluster performances in the Octagon.

    But it would be his last UFC appearance that would have fans hating on Starnes.

    Facing Nate Quarry at UFC 83, Starnes lost a lopsided unanimous decision after literally running away from his opponent at various points in the fight.

    Retiring in June of this year, Starnes will forever live in infamy as "the Running Man".

22. Charles Bennett

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    Charles "Krazy Horse" Bennett has had a controversial career as a lightweight and featherweight fighter.

    Bennett has earned the ire of fans for his in the cage antics, often disrespecting referees, insulting fighters and even getting into scuffles with his opponent's teammates before fights.

    Even worse, Bennett has been involved in a myriad of legal troubles, even having missed a fight because of being in jail at the time of his flight.

    In 2000, he was convicted for possession and sale of cocaine, and in 2007, he was charged with assault and false imprisonment.

    Bennett is truly one of the worst characters in MMA.

21. Matt Serra

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    Matt Serra is not necessarily one of the worst characters in the sport, but his loudmouth and trash talking antics certainly has not gained him any fans.

    Having a grudge with former UFC Welterweight champion Matt Hughes, Serra's wisecracks, although humorous, are not for everyone.

20. Junie Browning

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    An alum of the eighth season of the Ultimate Fighter, Junie Browning is certainly not the most lovable character to ever grace the show.

    Browning showed his uncontrollable temper while on the long-running reality show, a side of him that cost Browning his job with the UFC after being arrested for assaulting three nurses at a hospital where he was being treated for a drug overdose.

    Sporting an underwhelming 4-5 record, Browning's volatile behavior has made him one of the most hated fighters to ever appear on the Ultimate Fighter.

19. Jon Fitch

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    There is so much to like about Jon Fitch.

    He works hard, he has a stellar record, and he constantly tries to win his bouts.

    However, fans love to hate this former welterweight contender because of his "lay and pray" fighting style, often keeping the fight on the mats to minimize his risk of loss.

    Fitch is one of the few good guys in the sport who his hated solely because fans think he is boring.

18. Ken Shamrock

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    Former champion Ken Shamrock is a legend of the sport for his skill in the cage as well as his less than likable behavior outside of it.

    Shamrock had an unsuccessful time as a coach on the Ultimate Fighter and lost the respect of many fans after running his mouth and losing to Tito Ortiz twice.

    He also got caught using steroids and was sidelined for a year.  That, coupled with other bad decisions, such as a missed opportunity to fight his estranged brother Frank Shamrock, has made him one of the more hated fighters in the sports history.

17. Quinton Jackson

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    Former UFC Light-Heavyweight champion Quinton "Rampage" Jackson has gained a lot of love from fans over the years for his hard-nosed style of fighting and his exciting stand-up skills.

    But Rampage has lost the respect of a few fans for his constant trash-talking ways and his less than respectful actions towards certain female reporters.

    Considered one of the remaining legends of the sport, Rampage has a personality that is not for every MMA fan.

16. Muhammed Lawal

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    Former Strikeforce Light-Heavyweight champion Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal is definitely one of the less popular fighters in the sport, not because of his skill, but because he's so full of himself.

    Prancing around in a cape and a crown, the self-proclaimed king does not really own that many impressive wins except for a decision win over Gegard Mousasi that earned him the title.

    Lawal has recently been beefing with Rampage, trying to gain himself entrance into the UFC.

    It might take more than a few tweets, however, to make his dream a reality.

15. Matt Hughes

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    Former UFC Welterweight champion Matt Hughes is revered by most as one of the all-time greats, having had such a dominating championship run during his Hall of Fame career.

    However, a segment of the fan base utterly detests Hughes for some of his antics as coach on the Ultimate Fighter where he handed out Bibles to his team and came across poorly because of his personality.

    A polarizing figure for sure, Hughes still, however, remains a legend.

14. Jon Jones

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    UFC Light-Heavyweight champion Jon Jones is clearly one of the most skilled fighters in the sport, but his demeanor and cockiness has given him a lot of haters since he became champion.

    People hate on the champion because he comes across as arrogant and full of himself, considering himself the best even though he is only 24.

    Also accused of ducking his nemesis Rashad Evans, fans want to see him take on his former teammate so they can settle the score once and for all.

13. Nate Diaz

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    Although not as controversial as his brother Nick Diaz, Nate Diaz gets a lot of hate from fans as well.

    Sporting a similar mean mug and taunting style that gets into opponents' heads, Nate Diaz does not win anyone over when he flexes after choking a guy out.

    Also, he was involved in the infamous Nashville Brawl during the Strikeforce event where Jason "Mayhem" Miller entered the cage trying to goad Nate Diaz's teammate, Jake Shields, into a rematch.

    A true veteran of the sport, Nate Diaz remains a polarizing figure in the UFC.

12. Tim Sylvia

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    Former UFC Heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia never really got the respect he deserved from fans when he was in the UFC.

    Lacking the look and feel of a heavyweight champion, fans would constantly boo Sylvia when he would enter the Octagon.

    Sylvia also tested positive for steroids, an egregious action that fans of any sport detest.

11. Rashad Evans

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    Jon Jones may be considered one of the cockiest fighters in the sport, but former teammate Rashad Evans definitely pioneered the art of the fighter with swagger.

    The former light-heavyweight champion has been criticized for his trash talking ways and the way he carries himself outside the Octagon.

    After defeating two of the sport's most popular figures en route to the title, the hate for Evans reached it's pinnacle.

    Today, Evans' well-documented feud with Jones has only added to the flames of hate for both fighters.

10. Anderson Silva

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    Nobody denies the sheer magnitude of UFC Middleweight champion Anderson Silva's career.

    Widely considered the greatest fighter of all-time, Silva has the respect of everyone who watches him, except for Chael Sonnen of course.

    Although many fans respect him, some also dislike the champion for his own brand of cockiness and his lack of seriousness in certain fights.

    Against Demian Maia at UFC 112, fans were in an uproar when Silva clowned the challenger for five rounds, refusing to engage while taunting Maia. White was so angry with his performance that he left the Octagon after the fight, forcing Silva's manager to give him the belt.

    Many fans were ecstatic with the beat down that Chael Sonnen gave and will likely continue to support the "people's champion" until a rematch happens. 

9. BJ Penn

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    Former two-time UFC champion BJ Penn has started to gain a lot of love lately after his emotional retirement after losing to Nick Diaz at UFC 137.

    But before this, Penn had a huge hater contingent that accused the former champion of being a cry baby and unmotivated.

    Fans cite his reaction to the Georges St. Pierre greasing scandal and his overall lack of conditioning coming into certain fights.

    Although a legend, in his prime, Penn did not win over as many fans as he could have. 

8. Frank Mir

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    Former UFC Heavyweight champion Frank Mir is definitely not the most popular guy in the sport.

    He receives a lot of flack for his trash talking ways, something that he is not always able to back up.

    Claiming that he has Brock Lesnar's leg and Minotauro Nogueira's chin, his overall cockiness and seemingly disrespectful attitude at some points in his career has certainly made Mir into one of the bad boys of the sport.

7. Nick Diaz

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    Before his brilliant performance at UFC 137, former Strikeforce Welterweight champion Nick Diaz was widely considered one of the most hated fighters outside of the UFC.

    Diaz always trash talks his opponents and is unapologetic with his uncensored interviews where he's calling out fighters, complaining about his paychecks, and even threatening to attack MMA journalist Ariel Helwani.

    He also got into a fight with Joe Riggs in the hospital after their UFC 57 fight.

    Losing an opportunity to take on St. Pierre because of missed media appearances, Diaz will still get a shot at the title.

    Even more intense than his brother Nate Diaz, Nick Diaz's taunting in and out of the cage may not be the best thing for his career if he ever becomes champion.

6. Josh Koscheck

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    Josh Koscheck first gained his villainous fame after appearing on the Ultimate Fighter where his antics and bad-boy ways made viewers instantly hate on him.

    Returning to the show as a coach opposite Georges St. Pierre, he continued his practical jokes and trash talking, something he could not back up when he was picked apart by the champion at UFC 124.

    Just an overall off-putting character, Koscheck's demeanor has made him into one of the biggest heels in the UFC.

5. Michael Bisping

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    It's one thing to taunt an opponent to hype a fight, but some of the actions Michael Bisping has pulled are just wrong.

    Not the most lovable guy during his time on the Ultimate Fighter, the British fighter lost even more fans after his fight with Jorge Rivera.

    With a lot of bad blood brewing prior to the bout, Bisping caused an uproar after blatantly throwing an illegal knee to the downed Rivera and spitting at his corner during the match.  After the fight, he continued to act out against Rivera's camp.

    Fans were so happy at UFC 100 when Dan Henderson put the big mouthed Bisping to sleep with one of the most famous knockouts in MMA history.

4. Fedor Emelianenko

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    Many people hate on Fedor Emelianenko not for personality, but because fans feel that he ducked the UFC and would not put his former title as the greatest fighter of all-time to the test.

    Although having many impressive victories in Pride and one of the greatest undefeated streaks in MMA history, Emelianenko haters claim that he never really challenged himself against the caliber of competition that only the UFC could provide.

    Now in the twilight of his career, Emelianenko missed out on his chance to cement his status as a true legend of the sport.

3. Tito Ortiz

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    Former UFC Light-Heavyweight champion Tito Ortiz has always been a hated figure ever since he first entered the Octagon.

    Sporting his infamous flaming shorts and beanie along with his big shades, Ortiz was the first bad boy of the UFC and perfected the art of the pre-fight trash talk.

    After an impressive run as a champion, Ortiz gained even more hatred from fans when he went on an almost five year long winless streak that had fans scratching their heads as to why this guy was still fighting in the UFC.

    Now gaining some respect back after defeating Ryan Bader and going toe-to-toe with Rashad Evans, at its zenith, Ortiz was one of the most hated fighters in the world.

2. Chael Sonnen

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    "Uncle Chael" gained a lot of respect from fans when he took Anderson Silva to the brink of defeat at UFC 117.

    But, while his humorous diatribes against the champion have made him into the "people's champion", his quips about Brazil and their other fighters has garnered the hate of many in the sport.

    Not to mention that he tested positive for elevated levels of testosterone and was involved in a money laundering scandal, many fans may find his words funny, but his disrespectful ways and overall personality has drawn more ire than praise.

1. Brock Lesnar

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    When Brock Lesnar first came into the UFC, there had never been any other fighter to make his Octagon debut with as much hype and hatred at the same time.

    Scores of fans hated on the now-former champion because of his WWE background, claiming that he was not a legitimate fighter.

    After proving doubters wrong with his impressive wrestling and vicious poundings, Lesnar only got more heat for his post-fight rants, specifically against Frank Mir in their rematch at UFC 100.

    Even today, fans love to hate on Lesnar who, for a moment in MMA history, was the most hated fighter on the planet—and possibly of all-time.

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