An Illustrious List: Ranking the Top Five Trash-Talkers in MMA history

With UFC 158 fast approaching and the trash-talking exploits of title challenger Nick Diaz well-documented by now, time is right to take a look back at the greatest trash-talkers in UFC history. Sure, there have been many, but the fighters who make this list truly made their mark with their mouths rather than their fists. It appears an overarching trend is in place, one where the man with the biggest mouth definitely does not laugh last. Let’s take a look at the best mouth-runners MMA has ever seen, starting from the bottom:

5) Phil Baroni: “The New York Badass” is tailor-made for this list, perhaps creating the most overhyped saying in MMA history by stating, “I’m the best eva!” repeatedly after defeating Dave Menne at UFC 39. The once-surging beast has since went on to fade into obscurity with very a lackluster 15-16 record, last seen losing to Hayato “Mach” Sakurai in Dream last New Year’s Eve.

4)Tito Ortiz: “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” was never one to hold his tongue throughout his lengthy UFC career. From his feud with Chuck Liddell that ultimately saw him knocked out viciously, to his famous back-and-forth war of words with UFC President Dana White, Ortiz was always there to fuel the fire with his mouth. But he does still hold the UFC record for most title defenses at light heavyweight, so I guess technically, he’s the fighter who backed up his trash talk the most.

3)Josh Koscheck: Kos gets the spot here because he’s just the prototypical fighter who everyone loves to hate. And from the look of things, he wouldn’t have it any other way. Just take his most recent interview with Karyn Bryant, where he basically thanks all of his haters for buying him a jet plane. Nice. Anyway, he parlayed his B.S. degree into a stint on The Ultimate Fighter opposite Georges St-Pierre, where he endlessly ran his mouth off to the champion. We all know how that ended. He was last seen getting pummeled by Robbie Lawler. 

2) Nick Diaz: The outspoken, enigmatic triathlete from Stockton just cannot be left off this list. Sure, last week’s tirade against GSP on the UFC 158 media call was a great example of his profanity-fueled trash talk, but that’s just another page in the book for Diaz. He curses, pouts, no-shows, and fails drug tests, all the while complaining that’s he’s being mistreated and underpaid while GSP is pampered by people handing him waters. And that was after the UFC gifted him a title shot after he lost and then got suspended. Diaz is obviously talented and maybe the hardest worker in the game, and he has a chance to take his career to the next level this Saturday. 

1) Chael Sonnen: Was there really any other fighter who could have graced the top of this illustrious list? No, “The American Gangster” from West Linn, Oregon, spews forth gems of smack talk like he was a Hollywood screenwriter. It’s hard not to love his endless quotes and anecdotes.  This week’s “UFC Tonight” on Fuel TV was a perfect example, where he stated, “If Jon Jones, a potted cactus and a slice of pizza from my oven were all on ‘Jeopardy,’ Jon Jones would not make the final round.”

He almost backed it all up in 2010 when he nearly beat Anderson Silva, but he had T:E levels of almost 17 to 1. That’s more than Alistair Overeem had prior to UFC 146 for you stat checkers. In my mind, there will never be a better trash talker than one Chael P. Sonnen. He might get destroyed by Jon Jones, but you can rest assured his comments leading up to the fight will be legendary, just as those he directed towards Anderson Silva were.

Oh, and Ken Shamrock earns the Dishonorable Mention with his classic treasure, tellling Tito Ortiz, “I am gonna beat you into the living death.”

 



16 Comments

  1. Profile photo of Evan Holober

    Evan Holober

    March 14, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    No Ronday Rousey? This article is sexist.

  2. Profile photo of Evan Holober

    Evan Holober

    March 14, 2013 at 5:08 pm

    On a serious note though; I think my favorite trash talking moment ever was Lesnar after the second Mir fight. He literally beat Mir half to death, then went and talked **** to his face, then talked **** about UFC sponsors, then informed the public that he'd be banging his hot wife later. Classic.

  3. Profile photo of jajko83

    jajko83

    March 14, 2013 at 5:55 pm

    Hunt wiill KO dos srantos and he never trashtalks ,>

  4. Profile photo of Knarcisistik

    Knarcisistik

    March 14, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    Chael Sonnen is finally the champion in something! And love how he is wearing a shirt of the #2 guy in the pic, well played…

  5. Profile photo of KeithFarrell

    KeithFarrell

    March 14, 2013 at 7:08 pm

    Personally I would replace Tito with Bisping. Bisping actually talks crap to his opponents but Tito, form what I remember, preferred to do little things like laugh to get under his opponents skin and frustrate them, rather than rip them to shreds.

    Also with Tito, the amount of trash he talked going in to the Couture and Liddell fights and then follow up by getting destroyed kind of makes it less impressive.

    Chael undoubtedly #1

    • Profile photo of Brian Cox

      Brian Cox

      March 14, 2013 at 8:35 pm

      Yeah, I'd agree with that, Keith. Bisping is a very good trash-talker. Absolutely. Another great British trash-talker was Dan Hardy. I say "was", because Dan started out as a great trash-talker (as a GSP fan I freaking hated the guy) and then walked away from it. I can only assume, as the result of four straight losses. Shame, because he was a very funny and irreverent, fellow. A bit of the "old-British-humor".

      Yes, I'd lose either Ortiz or Baroni of this list, in favor of Bisping. My only caveat…Michael should have really gone after Belfort, when it came out that he was on TRT. Michael, kind of rolled over on on that one. He would have been well within his right(s) to have teed-off on Vitor for failing to disclose. Sanctions or my fandom for Belfort, aside.

  6. Profile photo of Brian Cox

    Brian Cox

    March 14, 2013 at 7:17 pm

    Sonnen might be the best trash-talker of all time, but it seems to be all past-tense, now.

    For, he seems to have morphed into John Jones's best friend and #1 fan, as well as a nice, mild mannered, affable, TV personality.

    The one thing I was looking forward to about Sonnen getting a title-shot that he hasn't earned, was the trash-talking we were "supposed" to see on TUF. To the point, I believe that was part of, if not the entirety of, the rationale behind giving Sonnen the fight in the first place. To raise the ratings of TUF, by trash-talking and dogging Jones, all the way through the season. That, unfortunately, has failed to materialize. Subsequently, with the exception of the fights and one in particular, this season of TUF has been a yawn. At least to me. To be even more to the point, I'm more apt to worry about missing Bellator on Spike, on Thursdays, than I am worried about missing TUF on Fuel, on Tuesdays.

    Sonnen might have been the best and funniest, trash-talker out there at one time, but now, he seems to be more worried about playing statesman. That's how I see it, at any rate.

    For me, the best trash-talker in the sport today, is Nick Diaz. Hands down. Speaking of which, there's a fight @ 185 I wouldn't mid seeing, Sonnen / Diaz.

  7. Profile photo of Bruce Lee

    Bruce Lee

    March 14, 2013 at 11:23 pm

    Honorable mentions: Frank Mir, Brock Lesnar and Michael Bisping

    • Profile photo of Bruce Lee

      Bruce Lee

      March 14, 2013 at 11:24 pm

      …and Dana White. You may recall when Dana was training to fight Tito Ortiz. Tito had negotiated the fight into his contract. In the end Tito allegedly bowed out leaving Dana ranting a blue streak up and down the Vegas strip

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