ComScore
sports

Who Are The Current UFC Champions?

Here are the current UFC champions across every weight class

ufc champions mobile
Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Now's a great time to take stock of the current champions in the UFC world. For new fans and those who may be unaware, here is a current list of UFC champions according to the official UFC rankings.

The standings are as follows:

  • Heavyweight Champion: Francis Ngannou (16-3)
  • Light-heavyweight Champion: Jiří Procházka (29-3-1)
  • Middleweight Champion: Israel Adesanya (23-1)
  • Welterweight Champion: Kamaru Usman (20-1)
  • Lightweight Champion: *Charles Oliveira* (33-8-1)
  • Featherweight Champion: Alexander Volkanovski (25-1)
  • Bantamweight Champion: Aljamain Sterling (21-3-0)
  • Flyweight Champion: Deivison Figueiredo (19-5-2)
  • Women’s Featherweight: Amanda Nunes (22-5)
  • Bantamweight Champion: Amanda Nunes (22-5)
  • Women’s Flyweight Champion Valentina Shevchenko (23-3)
  • Women’s Strawweight Champion: Carla Esparza (20-6)

Heavyweight Champion: Francis Ngannou (17-3)

GettyImages 1231977618
Zuffa LLC

Date won: March 27, 2021

Defenses: 1

Francis Ngannou has one of the most remarkable journeys to the UFC. Growing up in Cameroon, he faced an incredible amount of adversity before getting to the UFC. He worked in sand mines, had multiple failed escapes to Europe, and did not start training in MMA until he was 25 years old. Now, he is the heavyweight champion of the world.

Ngannou defeated Stipe Miocic at UFC 260 via knockout in the second round. His power was and is widely known to be his most useful weapon, but in this fight he showed more. He put his takedown defense and kickboxing on display in a world-class performance.

The UFC put some pressure on Ngannou, just a few months after his win over Miocic. In August, the company had Derrick Lewis and Ciryl Gane fight for an interim title. Gane showed the world that he is ready for the big stage, putting on an incredible performance against Lewis. When Gane and Ngannou met, the champion proved his dominance with some remarkably improved wrestling.

Light-heavyweight Champion: Jiří Procházka (29-3-1)

GettyImages 1402412044
Chris Unger / Getty Images

Date won: June 11th, 2022

Defenses: 0

The Light Heavyweight title had been vacant since Jon Jones' contentious salary negotiations with the UFC saw him vacate the title on August 17th. Dominick Reyes and former KSW Light Heavyweight Champion Jan Błachowicz battled for the title in late September, with the Polish fighter ultimately coming out on top. After a closely contested title defense against middleweight champion, Israel Adesanya, Błachowicz faced UFC veteran, Glover Teixeira. The Brazilian, Teixeira, understood that this was most likely his final chance at UFC gold. And the man delivered. In his first title defense, he would face Jiří Procházka. The Czech fighter had gained popularity for his unpredictable fighting style and his highlight reel knockouts. His big moment in the UFC came when he knocked out Reyes with a spinning elbow that garnished millions of views and lots of conversation. After a remarkably competitive first four rounds, Procházka would finish Teixeira in a surprising manor. He submitted the grappling wizard in the fifth round of their exciting matchup and a rematch between the two does seem like a likely possibility moving forward.

Middleweight Champion: Israel Adesanya (23-1)

gettyimages 1136954889
Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Date won: Oct. 6, 2019

Defenses: 4

The “style bender” has only suffered one loss in MMA and in his short time in the sport, he was able to become the middleweight champion. His striking seems almost immediately adaptable to almost any opponent he has faced including the likes of Anderson Silva. He made his promotional debut with the UFC in 2018 and by 2019 he was the interim champ, and finally the undisputed champ when he beat Robert Whittaker at UFC 243.

Adesanya defended his belt for the third time when he was challenged by Marvin Vettori. In 2022, Adesanya squeaked by Robert Whittaker in a competitive rematch. But most recently, he defeated Jared "The Killa Gorilla" Cannonier in a another five round decision. It was a very Mayweather-esque performance. After the fight, fans pointed out that a good majority of Adesanya's recent fights have been somewhat lackluster. Let us not forget, the same thing was said when Anderson Silva was cruising through his title defenses.

Welterweight Champion: Kamaru Usman (20-1)

gettyimages 480417010
Brandon Magnus/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Date won: March 2, 2019

Defenses: 5

“The Nigerian Nightmare” has lived up to his name in the UFC’s welterweight division proving to be a difficult puzzle for many fighters competing at 170 pounds. The 32-year-old has either knocked out his opponents or ground out a victory and won by decision. His only loss was early in his MMA career in 2013 in his second pro-fight. Since he has proven to be one of the most well-rounded welterweights since the days of Georges St-Pierre. In his rematch against Jorge Masvidal, Usman delivered a showstopping knockout that shook the MMA world. For his fifth title defense, Usman rematched against Colby Covington. The two headlined UFC 268 at the world's most famous arena, Madison Square Garden. Usman was pushed to the brink, but at the end of the night, he got his hand raised.

Lightweight Champion: Charles Oliveira (33-8-1)

GettyImages 1318249495
Getty Images

Date won: May 15th, 2021

Defenses: 1

Hmmm. This is a tricky one.

Technically speaking, there is no current champion in the UFC's lightweight division.

Oliveira failed to make weight for his most recent fight against Justin Gaethje. He was then stripped of his title, despite submitting Gaethje in the first round.

A lightweight brawler fighting out of São Paulo, Brazil, Charles Oliveira fought former Bellator Lightweight champion Michael Chandler for this vacant belt, following the retirement of Khabib Nurmagomedov.

Oliveira has been fighting with the UFC since 2010, but this is his first title belt with the organization. Despite this, he holds numerous UFC records including most submission wins in the organization's history at 14, and for most finishes at 17. The champion made his first title defense at UFC 269 against Dustin Poirier.

Oliveira will be competing for the vacant title against an unknown opponent in the future.

Featherweight Champion: Alexander Volkanovski (25-1)

gettyimages 1194022655
Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC

Date won: Dec. 14, 2019

Defenses: 4

The rugby player turned mixed martial artist recently picked up UFC gold with a victory over Max Holloway at UFC 245. The two fought to another decision in the remathc, that had the judges award Volkanovski the win and allowed him to keep title but he feels he and Holloway need to go again to solidify his position as the new featherweight champion. Volkanovski fought The Korean Zombie at UFC 273 and won via TKO. In his most recent battle, Volkanovski took on Holloway for a 3rd time. While the first two fights were remarkably competitive, the third was not. Volkanovski made his mark, and closed the final chapter to the rivalry.

Bantamweight Champion: Aljamain Sterling (21-3-0)

GettyImages 1305742809
Jeff Bottari / Contributor

Date won: March 6th, 2021

Defenses: 1

During UFC 259 Aljamain Sterling captured bantamweight in bizarre fashion. In the fourth round against Petr Yan, Sterling was hit by a textbook example of an illegal knee strike. Sterling was clearly injured and the referee declared it was a disqualification against Yan. Prior to the knee, Yan was winning on two of the three scorecards. Yan defeated Cory Sandhagen at UFC 267 for the interim title, after Sterling was forced to pull out due to a serious neck injury. When Sterling did meet back up with Yan, he shocked a lot of fans by defeated Yan in a split decision.

Flyweight Champion: Diveison Figueiredo (21-2-1)

gettyimages 1204234554
Christian Petersen/Staff

Date won: Jan 22, 2022

Defenses: 0

When Brandon Moreno took on Deiveson Figueiredo for the second time, history was made. After a close first fight, that was a fight of the year candidate in 2020, Moreno separated himself from the former champ. With his dominant performance at UFC 263, Brandon Moreno became the first Mexican-born UFC champion. However, the story between Moreno and Figueiedo did not stop there. The two competed for the third time at the start of 2022 and Figuiredo reclaimed his title. It appears that the two will fight for a fourth time in the near future.

Women’s Featherweight Champion: Amanda Nunes (21-4)

gettyimages 1154277334
Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC

Date won featherweight: Dec. 29, 2018

Defenses (featherweight): 2

The lioness is considered by many to be one of the best fighters in the world. For a good chunk of time, she was the double champ at 135 and 145. Like most fighters who balance two weight classes, the difficulty eventually caught up to her. However, it doesn't appear that anyone in the featherweight division will be able to take her throne any time soon. Nunes won the featherweight title in 2018 when she knocked out Cris Cyborg in the first round. That knockout became the biggest moment and fight of her career.

Women's Bantamweight Champion Amanda Nunes (22-5)

UFCUniversal
Getty Images

Date won featherweight: July 30, 2022

Defenses (bantamweight): 0

For years, Amanda Nunes dominated two divisions in the UFC. She was regarded as "The GOAT." Until that one night in 2021, when Julianna Pena shocked the world -- and stole the 135 pound title from Nunes.

It was one of the bigger upsets in the history of the sport, but Nunes wasn't done. The two would rematch in July of 2022, and Nunes would have her revenge. The Lioness put on a clinic in the decision victory, showing off her striking from both stances and used her superior strength to secure important takedowns late in the fight.

Women’s Flyweight Champion Valentina Shevchenko (23-3)

gettyimages 1204974486
Cooper Neill/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Date won: Dec. 8, 2018

Defenses: 7

Shevchenko has been fighting professionally since 2003 and coming from the world of kickboxing has made her a force to be reckoned with. She won the vacant flyweight title in 2018 at UFC 231 and has successfully defended it six times with the most recent defense at UFC 275.

Women’s Strawweight Champion: Carla Esparza (20-6)

Screen Shot 2022 05 09 at 3.31.35 PM
Alex Menendez / Stringer

Date won: May 7th, 2022

Defenses: 0

Rose Namajunas won the strawweight title by knockout at Madison Square Garden at UFC 217. Eventually, she would lose the title and have to work her way back up to the top. At UFC 261, "Thug" Rose stunned the fight community by knocking out Weilli Zhang via head kick. She defeated Zhang for a second time at UFC 268 at Madison Square Garden in a very close battle. However, there was a boogeyman that still loomed over her. Carla Esparza would be the one to strip Namajunas of her title in May of 2022. It was many years earlier where Esparza handed Namajunas one of her few losses in her MMA career. Esparza's unque skillset has proved to be difficult to her competitors. This is Esparza's second time holding UFC gold.

Did you like this article?
Thumbs Up
Liked
Thumbs Down
Disliked