One of the greatest things about MMA is it is a global sport. All across the world, you will find top fighters.
When the sport was first introduced to the American audience at UFC 1, it was a tall skinny Brazilian named Royce Gracie that rose above the rest of the competition and was crowned king. The young fighter used his family taught jiu-jitsu to take down his large foes and placed them in a bone-crushing or blood stopping submission holds to help him secure victory.
The rest of the world had to reevaluate their gameplan on winning mutual combat to try to neutralize the techniques of Brazilian jiu-jitsu. The next wave to succeed in the Octagon were NCAA wrestlers. Most of these fighters were from America, who used their elite level athleticism, powerful takedowns, top control and ground and pound to take the mantle from the Gracie family.
Since then the sport has evolved so fast, that top fighters have emerged from all areas of the world. Western European strikers like Alistair Overeem, Michael Bisping, and Conor McGregor have captured titles. The continent of Australia is the home of current UFC champions Robert Whittaker and Israel Adesanya. While even Africa is the birthplace of UFC champions Kamaru Usman and the previously mentioned Adesanya.
One of the strongest regions for producing top MMA fighters is Eastern European. The region has always been strong but it seems like the area is mass producing the talent and is on the brink of stealing the top spot from America. However, before that day comes, let’s look at the greatest fighters to have already come out of the area. To really examine the talent, we have produced a list of the top 10 greatest Eastern European fighters in MMA history.