Welcome to the Mixed Martial Arts Hall of Fame!
      

Nominees

Nomination to the MMA Hall of Fame is open to fighters, trainers, officials, promoters, managers, media, and others for extraordinary contributions to mixed martial arts worldwide. Nominations are made by members of the Judge's Panel, as well as by members of the MMA community.

Nomination is limited to fighters beginning ten years after their debut. Likewise, officials, trainers, and all others are not eligible until a decade after their first professional appearance. The list below is grouped chronologically, with a grouping for each year, a minimum of ten years after their professional debut.

Non fighters are limited to a maximum of two inductions per year, although there is no restriction on the number of nominees for each year.

There are two categories at present: Pioneers (pre UFC 1) and historical (UFC 1 onwards).

PIONEERS
Nomination to the Pioneer category is limited to those figures whose contribution peaked before the UFC ever existed. There are periodic additions in the Pioneer category.

João Alberto Barreto • Red belt under Hélio Gracie, undefeated in over 16 NHB fights, referee at UFC 1.
Edward Barton-Wright • Combined wrestling, boxing, savate, and Jiu-jitsu; promoted mixed rules fights.
Yoshiaki Fujiwara • Trained Masakatsu Funaki, Minoru Suzuki, Bart Vale.
Ivan Gomes • Legendary Vale Tudo era fighter, starting in 1962.
Karl Gotch • Catch wrestling legend, pivotal figure in JMMA.
Carlos Gracie, Sr • First Gracie to learn Judo from Mitsuyo Maeda.
Carlson Gracie, Sr • Debuted March 1953 vs. Luiz Aguiar
George Gracie • Early family champion, fought in numerous Vale Tudo fights in the late 20s and 30s.
Helio Gracie • Debuted 1932 vs. Antonio Portugal.
Rolls Gracie • Considered by many to be the father of modern day jiu jitsu.
Pedro Hemeterio • First non Gracie to receive a 9th degree red belt in BJJ.
Tokugoro Ito • Early mixed rules fighter who helped invent the sport; lost to Ad Santel, Mitsuyo Maeda.
Masahiko Kimura • Pioneering mixed rules competitor, greatest Judoka of all time.
Gene LeBell • Debuted December 1963 vs. Milo Savage.
Bruce Lee • Founder of Jeet Kune Do.
Mitsuyo Maeda • Japanese judōka and prizefighter in mixed rules bouts, taught the Gracies.
Flavio Molina • Early Vale Tudo fighter, first Muay Thai trainer for Marco Ruas and Eugenio Tadeu.
Geo Omori • Fighter that sparked the late 20s and 30s vale tudo craze in Brazil.
Euclides Pereira • Regarded by many as the best fighter of the Vale Tudo era.
Ernest Regnier • Took part in Savate vs. Jiu-Jitsu mixed rules bout in 1905.
Billy Robinson • Legendary Catchwrestling instructor.
Waldemar Santana • Fought Helio Gracie, Carlson Gracie, and Mashahiko Kimura.
Ad Santel • Participant in mixed rules wrestlng vs. Jiu-Jitsu bouts in the early 1900s.
Casemerimo 'Rei Zulu' Martins • Fought under various rules from 1963 to 2008.

HISTORICAL
Nomination to the Historical category is limited to those figures who made profound contributions to the sport after the debut of UFC 1, and who have over a decade of professional experience.

Pre 1993 (Nomination limited to figures who made a significant contribution prior to the debut of the UFC, and who continued to lead following 1993)
Sergio Batarelli • Debuted in 1984 vs. Rei Zulu, founder of the IVC.
Murilo Bustamante • Debuted 26 September1991 vs. Marcelo Mendes.
Art Davie • Proposed to Rorion Gracie and John Milius an eightman single-elimination tournament.
Rudimar Fedrigo • Officially made his Muay Thai academy Chute Boxe a Vale Tudo school in 1991.
Masa Funaki • Co-founder of Pancrase, with Minoru Suzuki, 21 September 1993.
Cesar Gracie • Receives black belt in 1992, 3rd Gracie in North America to open a school.
Renzo Gracie • Debuted 1 January 1992 vs. Luiz Augusto Alvareda.
Rickson Gracie • Nuf said.
Rorion Gracie • Founded UFC, 1993, brought Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to the world.
Jorge Guimaraes • Teaching BJJ  in USA pre UFC 1, co-founder of Black House.
Wallid Ismael • Debuted 26 August 26 1991 vs. Eugenio Tadeu.
Antonio Inoki • Godfather of MMA in Japan.
David Isaacs • President of the UFC 1993-1998.
Akira Maeda • Debuted 1985 vs. Satoru Sayama.
Campbell McLaren • Executive Producer of the first 20 UFC Pay-Per-View events
Bob Meyrowitz • Co-founded UFC.
Yori Nakamura  • Debuted June 1986 at first Shooto competition.
Greg Nelson • Founded Minnesota Martial Arts Academy in 1992.
Marco Ruas • Debuted 30 Novemeber 1984 vs. Fernando Pinduka.
Kazuhiro Sakamoto • Debuted 18 May 1989 vs. Tetsuo Yokoyama, former President of Shooto.
Satoru Sayama • Debuted 1985 vs. Akira Maeda.
Bob Shamrock • Instrumental in getting son Ken Shamrock into MMA.
Ken Shamrock • Debuted Nov 1992 vs. Don Nakaya Nielsen in PWF-Gumi.
Minoru Suzuki • Co-founder of Pancrase, with Masa Funaki, 21 September 1993.
Eugênio Tadeu • Debuted 30 November 1984 vs. Renan Pitanguy.
Paul Viele • Founded World Martial Arts, in 1992.

Class of 2003 (Professional debut 1993 or earlier)
Rafael Cordeiro • Debuted 29 August 1993.
Eddie Goldman • Started covering MMA at UFC 1.
Royce Gracie • Debuted Nov 1993.
Jose 'Pele' Landy-Jons • Debuted 29 August 1993 vs. Moura.
Dave Meltzer • Started covering MMA at UFC 1.
Susumu Nagao • Started photographing the sport at UFC 1.
Yuki Nakai • Debuted 26 April 1993 vs. Hiroki Noritsugi.
Eric Paulson • Debuted 24 June 1993 vs. Kazuhiro Kusayanagi.
Bas Rutten • Debuted 21 September 1993 vs Ryushi Yanagisawa.
Maurice Smith • Debuted 8 November 1993 vs. Minoru Suzuki.
Leon Tabbs • First official cutman, at UFC 1.
Vernon 'Tiger' White • Debuted 21 September 1993 vs. Takaku Fuke

Class of 2004 (Professional debut 1994 or earlier)
Jeff Blatnick • Commentator debut UFC 4, 16 December 1994.
Matt Hume • Debuted 21 April 1994 vs. Katsuomi Inagaki.
Phyllis Lee • Management debut 16 December 1994 Dan Severn vs. Anthony Macias.
'Big' John McCarthy • Debuted 11 March 1994 at UFC 2.
Guy Mezger • Debuted 16 December 1994 vs. Jason Fairn.
Remco Pardoel • Debuted 11 March 1994 vs. Alberto Leon at UFC 2.
Rumina Sato • Debuted 7 November 1994 vs. Michael McAuliffe.
Dan Severn • Debuted December 1994 vs. Anthony Macias.
Frank Shamrock • Debuted December 1994 vs. Bas Rutten.
Joe Silva • Debuted at UFC 3, has been matchmaker ever since.
Ron Van Clief • Debuted 16 December 1994 vs. Royce Gracie.
Mario Yamasaki • Opened the first Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu school in the DC area in 1994.

Class of 2005 (Professional debut 1995 or earlier)
David 'Tank' Abbott • Debuted 14 July 1995 vs. Oleg Taktarov.
Allan Goes •  Debuted 13 May 1995 vs. Frank Shamrock.
Enson Inoue • Debuted 21 January 1995 vs. Shingo Shigeta.
Frederico Lapenda • Brought Marco Ruas to UFC 6 on 14 July 1995.
Yves Lavigne • Tasked in 1995 by AC in Quebec with reporting on MMA.
John Lewis • Debuted 8 September 1995 vs. Thomas Puckett.
Melvin Manhoef • Debuted 2 December 1995 vs. Jordy Jonkers.
Pat Miletich • Debuted 28 October 1995 vs. Yasunori Matsumoto.
John Perretti • Matchmaker debut for Battlecade: Extreme Fighting in 1995.
Bob Schrijber • Debuted 1 January 1995 vs. Rudi de Loos.
Mario Sperry • Debuted 1 September 1995 vs. Jose Balduino.
Al Stankie • Hired by producer Jon Peters to train Vitor Belfort in 1995.
Oleg Taktarov • Debuted 4 April 1995 vs Ernie Verdecia.
Igor Vovchanchyn • Debuted 14 October 1995 vs. Alexander Mandrik.

Class of 2006 (Professional debut 1996 or earlier)
Alvin Aguilar • Trainer debut in 1996 with founding of Team DEFTAC.
Vitor Belfort • Debuted 11 October 1996 vs. John Hess.
Bruce Buffer • Announcing debut 12 July 1996 at UFC 10.
Chris Brennan • Debuted 10 February 1996 vs. Delcio.
Rico Chiapparelli • Founded RAW Team after watching MARS show on 22 November 1996.
Mark Coleman • Debuted July 1996 vs. Moti Horenstein.
Monte Cox • Debuted 23 November 1996 Extreme Challenge 1.
Mark DellaGrotte • Founded Sityodtong USA in 1996.
Tom Erickson • Debuted 22 November 1996 vs. Aleksander Khramstovskly.
Don Frye • Debuted 16 February1996 vs. Thomas Ramirez.
Gary Goodridge • Debuted 16 February 1996 vs. Paul Herrera.
Jeremy Horn • Debuted 1 March 1996 vs. Rick Gravesen.
Trevor Lally • Debuted 23 November 1996 vs. Bob Jacobsen.
Becky Levi • Coaching debut UFC 8, 12 July 1996, cornering Don Frye.
Javier Mendez • Trainer debut 1996. Founder of AKA.
Carlos Newton • Debuted 26 April 1996 vs. Jean Riviere.
Jeff Osborne • Promoted first event 11 November 1996 - Hook N Shoot: Challenge.
Kevin Randleman • Debuted 22 October 1996 vs. Dan Bobish.
Pedro Rizzo • Debuted 26 October 1996 vs. Eric Labaille.
Kazushi Sakuraba • Debuted June 1996 vs. Rene Rooze in UWFI.
Hayato Sakurai • Debuted 4 October 1996 vs. Caol Uno.
Wanderlei Silva • Debuted 1 November 1996 vs. Dilson Filho.
T. Jay Thompson • Promoted first event 9 January 1996 - Superbrawl.
Caol Uno  • Debuted 4 October 1996 vs. Hayato Sakurai.

Class of 2007 (Professional debut 1997 or earlier)
Josh Barnett • Debuted 11 January 1997 vs. Chris Charnos.
Dan 'Punkass' Caldwell • Founded TapouT in 1997.
Cal Cooper • Launched New Full Contact in January of 1997.
Randy Couture • Debuted 30 May 1997 vs. Tony "Ludvig Borga" Halme.
Martijn de Jong • Debuted 28 May 1997 vs. Taro Obata
Vadim Finkelstein • Founded M-1 Global in 1997.
Joel Gold  • Founded Full Contact Fighter magazine in 1997.
Dan Henderson • Debuted 15 June 1997 vs. Crezio De Souza.
Mark Kerr • Debuted 19 January1997 vs. Paul Varelans.
Nick Lembo • Observing BAMA and initiating work on rules acceptable for NJ in 1997.
Charles 'Mask' Lewis, Jr. • Founded TapouT in 1997.
Jamie Levine • Founded WEF in Orlando, Florida in 1997.
Matt Lindland • Debuted 14 February 1997 vs. Karo Davtyan.
Dave Menne • Debuted 4 April 1997 vs. Duane Bressinger.
Tito Ortiz • Debuted 30 May 1997 vs. Guy Mezger.
Jens Pulver • Debuted 1 February 1997 vs. Jeremy Harding.
Joe Rogan • Commentated since 7 February 1997 at UFC 12: Judgement Day.
Jeff Sherwood • Founded Sherdog in 1997.
Yuji Shimada • Debuted 11 October 1997 reffing Rickson Gracie vs. Nobuhiko Takada I at Pride 1.
Paul Smith • Matchmaking debut March 1997 for Howard Petschler's IFC in 1996.
Anderson Silva • Debuted 27 May 1997 vs. Raimundo Pinheiro.
Chael Sonnen • Debuted 10 May 1997 vs. Ben Hailey.
Sheik Tahnoon • Founded Pentagon Combat, in 1997 founded ADCC, current minority owner of UFC.
Evan Tanner • Debuted 12 April 1997 vs. Paul Buentello.
August Wallén • Debuted 14 September 1997 vs. Fredrik Dahlgren.
Dana White • Began managing MMA fighters Tito Ortiz and Chuck Liddell in 1997.
Megumi Yabushita • Debuted 8 December 1997 vs. Ji Hee Yu.

Class of 2008 (Professional debut 1998 or earlier)
Scott Adams • Debuted 8 June 1998 vs. Jason Dean.
'Crazy' Bob Cook • Debuted 4 September 1998 vs. Danny Grider.
Robert Follis • Started coaching at Team Quest in 1998.
Darrell Gholar • Debuted 26 April 1998 vs. Johil de Oliveira.
Takanori Gomi  • Debuted 27 November 1998 vs. Hiroshi Tsuruya.
Jennifer Howe • Debuted 21 November 1998 vs. Terry Lukomski.
Matt Hughes  • Debuted 1 January 1998 vs. Erick Snyder.
Chuck Liddell • Debuted 15 May 1998 vs. Noe Hernandez.
Alexandre 'Pequeno' Franca Nogueira • Debuted 27 April 1998 vs. Noboru Asahi.
André Pederneiras • Debuted 25 October 1998 vs. Rumina Sato
Kid Peligro • Started covering the sport in 1998. 
Ed Soares • Acquires SInister brand in 1998, Co-founder of Black House.  
Genki Sudo • Debuted 6 June 1998 vs. Tiki Ghosn.        

Class of 2009 Professional debut 1999 or earlier
Bas Boon • Founded Golden Glory in 1999.
Rich Franklin • Debuted 19 June 1999 vs. Michael Martin.
Ian 'The Machine' Freeman • Debuted 27 June 1999 vs. Tony Bailey.
Josh Hedges • Began photographing UFC in 1999.
Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson • Debuted 13 November 1999 vs. Mike Pyle.
Chris Lytle • Debuted 13 February 1999 vs. Bo Hershberger.
Nate Marquardt • Debuted 17 April 1999 vs. Mike Lee.
Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira • Debuted June 1999 vs. David Dodd.
Alistair Overeem • Debuted 24 October 1999 vs. Ricardo Fyeet.
Bobby Razak • Filmed Rites of Passage 1999.
Matt Serra • Debuted 7 April 1999 vs. Scott Schultz.
Sean Sherk • Debuted 19 June 1999 vs. Roscoe Ostyn.
Renato 'Babalu' Sobral • Debuted 20 January 1999 vs. Fernando Cerchiari.
Erin Toughill • Debuted 27 September 1999 vs. Irma Verhoef.
Terry Trebilcock and Bud Brutsman • Promoted first event 10 October 1999 King of the Cage 1.

Class of 2010 Professional debut 2000 or earlier
Ricardo Almeida • Debuted 23 December 2000 vs. Akira Shoji.
Ricardo Arona • Debuted 20 April 2000 vs. Andrei Kopylov.
Marloes Coenen • Debuted 5 December 2000 vs. Megumi Yabushita.
Fedor Emelianenko • Debuted 21 May 2000 vs  Martin Lazarev.
Lorenzo Fertitta • Began process of acquiring UFC from SEG in 2000.
Larry Hazzard • First NJSACB officially sanctioned professional "MMA style" match on 26 February 2000.
Greg Jackson • Officially became an MMA school in 2000.
Ricardo Liborio • Co-founded BTT, co-founded ATT.
Lou Neglia • MMA promotional debut Steve Anshelewitz vs Mark Shopp 26 February 2000.
Colin Oyama • Coaching debut 14 April 2000 for Tito Ortiz vs. Wanderlei Silva.
Shawn Tompkins • Debuted 2 June 2000 vs. Matt Rocca.
Miguel Torres • Debuted 27 March 2000 vs. Larry Pulliam.
Mike Winklejohn • With Greg Jackson officially became an MMA school in 2000.

Class of 2011 Professional debut 2001 or earlier
Stephan Bonnar • Debuted 2001 vs. Brian Ebersole.
Mike Brown • Debuted 14 April 2001 vs. Jeffrey Darienzo.
Herb Dean • Debuted 9 September 2001 vs. Randy Halmot.
Nick Diaz • Debuted 31 August 2001 vs. Mike Wick.
Jacob 'Stitch' Duran • Debuted as UFC cutman 28 September 28 2001.
Paulo Filho • Debuted 8 January 2001 vs. Keiichiro Yamamiya.
Mirko 'Cro Cop' Filipovic • Debuted 19 August 2001 vs. Kazuyuki Fujita.
Forrest Griffin • Debuted 27 October 2001 vs. Daniel Severn.
Keith Kizer • Chief NSAC legal counsel for first sanctioned NV MMA fight 28 September 2001.
Frank Mir • Debuted 14 July 2001 vs. Jerome Smith.
BJ Penn • Debuted 4 May 2001 vs. Joey Gilbert.
Debi Purcell • Debuted  30 September 2001 vs. Amber Mosley.
Marc Ratner • NSAC Executive Director for first sanctioned MMA fight in Nevada on 28 September 2001.
Shigeru Saeki • Promotional debut 8 January 2001 with DEEP 1.
Tim Sylvia • Debuted 19 January 2001 vs. Randy Durant at IFC BattleGround.
Burt Watson • UFC site coordinator since UFC 31 in May 2001.
DeWayne Zinkin Jr. • Co-founded Zinkin Entertainment & Sports Management in 2001.

Class of 2012 Professional debut 2002 or earlier
Ryan Bennett • Founded MMAWeekly.com, with photographer Scott Petersen in January of 2002. 
Laura D'Auguste • Debuted 2 November 2002 vs. Shannon Constantine.
Kenny Florian • Debuted 15 February 2002 vs. Nuri Shakir.
Tim Lueckenhoff • Allowed sanctioning bodies to regulate MMA in Missouri in 2002.
Steve Marino and Steve Izzi • Founded Sprawl in 2002.
Gil Melendez • Class of 2002 • Debuted 18 October 2002 vs. Greg Quan.
Mauricio 'Shogun' Rua • Debuted 8 November 2002 vs. Rafael Freitas.
Georges St-Pierre • Debuted 25 January 2002 vs. Ivan Menjivar.

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Dr. John Keating  • Cageside doc debut TBD