Who is the greatest clinch fighter in mma history?

Discussion in 'MMA Forum' started by Samart'sTeep, Dec 31, 2020.

  1. Samart'sTeep

    Samart'sTeep Member Full Member

    Nov 17, 2019
    So, this question is somewhat ambiguous as there are many different types of clinch fighters. There are guys who use prefer using collar-tie to use dirty boxing and will sometimes drop down for a double-leg like Randy Couture and Daniel Cormier. There are fighters who made use of the muay thai plum clinch to deliver knees to the body and head like Anderson Silva and Wanderlei Silva.

    Then there are guys like Cain Valesquez who prefer to push an opponent up against the fence and batter them with short punches and constant pressure.

    You've got guys like Fedor who would use right hands or hand traps to close the distance into a clinch and then use body locks, knee blocks or trips and throws to get his opponent to the ground; or he would maintain the clinch to batter them with knees and punches to the body like he did with Gary Goodridge and Cro cop before going back to takedowns.

    Then you've got guys like Jon Jones who at different phases of his career would use his greco and judo arsenal. At other times he would use wrist control, hand trapping or the collar tie to set up knees and elbows.

    I know this forum hates Jon Jones with a passion, but I think I'd have to give him the edge. Nobody really had as much versatility in the clinch as he did. He really could it all from the clinch even if he wasn't the master at a particular aspect, like his use of thai clinch plum. His fight with Glover Teixeria was a masterclass in clinch fighting.

    I also think Fedor probably comes in a close second due to his transitions of grappling and striking. I already made a thread about the best fighters who can transition between striking and grappling. Though, I thought GSP was the best at that, a few people made strong arguments for Fedor on this forum.

    So, who do you think is the best clinch fighter in mma history? Who am I leaving out that at least deserves serous consideration or is very underrated at this aspect of mma?

  2. Samart'sTeep

    Samart'sTeep Member Full Member

    Nov 17, 2019
    Also, how much consideration do pure judo specialists like Karo Parisyan and Rhonda Rousey deserve? Or Khabib's judo/wrestling/sambo hybrid style. These fighters rare did much striking damage from the clinch, but they displayed a mastery level of throwing and off-balancing opponents through their own momentum.

    BCS8 likes this.
  3. BCS8

    BCS8 Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    Aug 21, 2012
    I'd probably say Couture. Clinch fighting was a large part of how he won his matchups whereas guys like Fedor would use the clinch usually to transition to a throw and then ground and pound. The way he broke Gonzaga to bits in the clinch was clinical.
    louis54 likes this.