Happy Halloween, fight fans!
On a day that celebrates ghosts, goblins and ghouls, we take an extensive look at all the terrifying souls that willingly enter the mixed martial arts cage. They are some sick puppies, seeing as they punch people in the face for a living. But as intimidating, fierce and barbaric as they are, these fighting furies possess unparalleled skill. Like a witch riding a rocket or a werewolf prey-tracking with GPS, they instill fear into their foe with a tactical touch.
With so many resources at its disposal, MMA has churned out these warriors for years in effort to evolve them into more chilling competitors. Ones who even petrify people in their same line of work. They’ve won championships, secured gruesome knockouts and swarmed opponents like a pack of banshees.
Here are the five scariest fighters in MMA today, all making the list for their own distinguished reasons:
1. Gabi Garcia
Few female fighters scare the wits out of their training partners. I’m sure Gabi Garcia is one of them.
The 30-year-old Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt stands at 6-foot-2 and weighs 205 pounds. Garcia’s demeanor and physical makeup is exceedingly intimidating. She has sliced through her first three professional opponents while finishing two of those bouts in under three minutes.
As a fighter who possesses uncanny size and strength, Garcia can be seen suffocating opponents like a blanket over marbles. She sharpens her tools alongside some of the best grapplers on the planet and can probably beat them up if she chose to.
2. Rousimar Palhares
Despite his ridiculously hulkish makeup and daunting jiu-jitsu skills, it is Rousimar Palhares’ willingness to hold onto a submission that comfortably lands him on this list. Throughout the years, Palhares has attempted to pops knees, shatter heels and rip the arms off of his doll-like opponents. The Brazilian has been suspended for his efforts, yet still returns to his sickening ways.
While Palhares has fallen off the top-tier MMA radar with two-straight losses, he still lurks around the nearest corner. Someone of his horrific initiative and sadistic limb play is one of the scariest individuals imaginable. Inside of the cage or out of it.
3) Robbie Lawler
Robbie Lawler may have lost his UFC welterweight title earlier this year by getting flattened at the hand of Tyron Woodley, but you can’t keep a good demon down. The fact of the matter is that Lawler still represents the most terrifying form of striker in MMA today. Like a zombie hoped up on Red Bull, “Ruthless” vigorously attacks his opponents with zero regard for his own safety.
In the past, Lawler has dented noses, disconnected beings from their own consciousness, detracted from inevitable defeat only to capture ultimate glory and does all of it with a smile on his face. He’s arguably one of the most intimidating strikers of all time and a guy who has swung for more fences than Barry Bonds.
4) Cris Cyborg
If the MMA world suddenly transformed into the Marvel universe, Cris Cyborg would instantaneously take the form of Deadpool. But unlike Wade Wilson, the brutish Brazilian does all of her soul-reaping wizardry with her hands. No guns. No sword. All fist.
As one of the more physically gifted women to ever compete in the sport, Cyborg has butchered the competition en route to remaining undefeated for over a decade. Even the best female fighters in the world backtrack when they step inside the cage with the Mike Tyson of WMMA. They have no option but to accept their fate, wait for Cyborg’s bear claw hands to break their faces and ready themselves for display on the Brazilian’s wall of collective heads.
5) Anthony Johnson
Like Jason Voorhees, Michael Myers and even Jaws, Anthony “Rumble” Johnson can end anyone with one shot. Johnson has absolutely slaughtered his competition over the past few years, including a tooth-busting uppercut finish of Glover Teixeira and an in-cage massacre of Ryan Bader that has already been filed as a fighter-on-fighter crime.
But like every scary movie antagonist, Johnson has his weaknesses. If he doesn’t tag you right away with a swooping right hand, blistering combination or terrifying head kick, you may survive. However, he’s evolving his killer instincts and may have enough power to behead every running light heavyweight in his way, Jon Jones included.