Musa Betsu Kyu Judo club

Greater Moncton Judo (official JudoNB affiliate)

Top 10 Judoka in MMA

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The following is a list of the “Top 10 Judoka In MMA” using again like the previous post, no particular scientific formula, just going with general consensus. These are ranked not in order of their accomplishments but in the order in which they represent Judo exclusively, or made big shifts in consciousness towards awareness of Judo’s practical use in real fighting situations:

  1. Ronda Rousey (Strikeforce / UFC)
  2. Yoshihiro Akiyama (K1 / UFC)
  3. Karo Parisyan (UFC / Bellator)
  4. Hidehiko Yoshida (PRIDE / Sengoku)
  5. Rick Hawn (Bellator)
  6. Kazuhiro Nakamura (PRIDE / DREAM)
  7. Hector Lombard (UFC)
  8. Dong Hyun Kim (UFC)
  9. Shinya Aoki (OneFC / RizinFF)
  10. Fedor Emelianenko (PRIDE / Strikeforce / RizinFF)

1. Ronda Rousey (Strikeforce / UFC)

Despite her polarizing personality (you either love her or hate her), it goes without saying that this woman has probably done the most for Judo in MMA. She ran through the female divisions of Strikeforce & UFC without any serious competition until finally being stopped by Holly Holm. Nothing can take away her amazing accomplishments though, having some of the fastest submissions and shortest fights in MMA history, all against the best female competition of her generation:

Top Ronda Rousey defeats Cat Zingano via Juji Gatame (armbar) in 14 seconds

In the gym, she even throws top MMA guys twice her size:
<Ronda throws Nick Diaz, Luke Rockhold & Gegard Mousasi>

2. Yoshihiro Akiyama (K-1 / UFC)

Perhaps known more for his pop musical talents (with a massive following in Korea where he is known by his birth name “Choo Sung-hoon“) as well as his theatrics and elaborate ring entrances than his fighting skill, Akiyama was actually once Gold medal Judo champion at the Asian Games and representing both South Korea and Japan (he was born in Japan to “zainichi Korean” parents). He has pulled off some of the most impressive Judo throws in the history of MMA. Here are but a few examples:


3. Karo Parisyan (UFC / Bellator)

Karo “the heat” Parisyan is well known for being one of the first to substantially represent Judo in the UFC with some beautiful throws.


4. Hidehiko Yoshida (PRIDE / Sengoku)


He is also very humble despite being at the top echelon of the Judo community in Japan, here’s an interview after his infamous match with Royce Gracie:

5. Rick Hawn (Bellator)


6. Kazuhiro Nakamura (PRIDE / DREAM)

7. Hector Lombard (PRIDE / UFC)

8. Dong Hyun Kim (UFC)

9. Shinya Aoki (One FC / RizinFF)

10. Fedor Emelianenko (PRIDE / Strikeforce / RizinFF)


Author: Bryan Copeland

My name is Bryan Copeland and I'm Just a guy trying to make a positive impact. I also started OpenRecommender, an open source project with the hopes of giving every business owner and website operator in the world the power of a full-featured Recommendation Engine at their fingertips.

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