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Alex Pereira of Brazil prepares to face Jamahal Hill in the UFC light heavyweight championship fight during the UFC 300 event at T-Mobile Arena on April 13, 2024 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)
Athletes

UFC Light Heavyweight Title Lineage

Go Through All Of The Light Heavyweight Title Winners In UFC History

For years the UFC light heavyweight belt was held by some of the sports biggest names. See which athletes were able to climb the ladder and claim UFC gold in one of UFC toughest divisions.

Frank Shamrock (1997-1999) Defeats Kevin Jackson at Ultimate Japan (12/21/97) to become the first UFC Light Heavyweight Champion. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass) The title was then called the Middleweight title. Shamrock defends his title against Igor Zinoviev, Jeremy Horn, John Lober, and Tito Ortiz. He retires from the UFC in November of 1999.

Legends Lookback: Tito Ortiz
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Legends Lookback: Tito Ortiz
Legends Lookback: Tito Ortiz
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Tito Ortiz (2000-2003) Defeats Wanderlei Silva at UFC 25 (4/14/00) to win the vacant title. Ortiz defends his crown against Yuki Kondo, Evan Tanner, Elvis Sinosic, Vladimir Matyushenko and Ken Shamrock.  After a period of inactivity, Chuck Liddell and Randy Couture were selected to fight for the interim title. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

Randy Couture (2003) Defeats Chuck Liddell at UFC 43 (6/6/03) for the interim title. He defeats Ortiz at UFC 44 (9/26/03) to claim the undisputed crown. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

Vitor Belfort defeats Randy Couture to win the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship at UFC 46 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center on January 31, 2004 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)
Vitor Belfort defeats Randy Couture to win the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship at UFC 46 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center on January 31, 2004 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)

Vitor Belfort (2004) Defeats Randy Couture at UFC 46 (1/31/04) to win the undisputed title. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

Randy Couture (2004) Defeats Belfort via TKO (doctors stoppage) at the end of the third round at UFC 49 (8/21/04) and regains the title. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

Chuck Liddell celebrates his victory over Randy Couture at UFC 52 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 16, 2005 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)
Chuck Liddell celebrates his victory over Randy Couture at UFC 52 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 16, 2005 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)

Chuck Liddell (2005-2007) Defeats Couture at UFC 52 (4/16/05). Liddell defended his title against Jeremy Horn, Couture, Renato Sobral, and Ortiz. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

Quinton Jackson (2007-2008) Defeats Liddell in the first round at UFC 71 (5/26/07). Jackson defended the title against Dan Henderson in UFC 75's main event, winning the bout by unanimous decision. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

FINDING FORREST: The Story of Forrest Griffin, a True UFC Original
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FINDING FORREST: The Story of Forrest Griffin, a True UFC Original
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Forrest Griffin (2008) Defeats Quinton Jackson via unanimous decision at UFC 86 (7/5/08). (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

Rashad Evans (2008) Defeats Griffin at UFC 92 (12/27/08) in the third round via TKO. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

Lyoto Machida (2009) Defeats Evans via TKO at UFC 98 (5/23/09). Defended the title against Mauricio Rua(Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

 Mauricio "Shogun" Rua (white shorts) def. Lyoto Machida (black shorts) - KO - 3:35 round 1 during UFC 113 at Bell Centre on May 8, 2010 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)
Mauricio "Shogun" Rua (white shorts) def. Lyoto Machida (black shorts) - KO - 3:35 round 1 during UFC 113 at Bell Centre on May 8, 2010 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)

Mauricio Rua (2010) Defeats Lyoto Machida in a first round KO of at UFC 113 (5/8/10). (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

Jon Jones (2011-2015) Defeats Rua a third round TKO at UFC 128 (3/19/11). Defended the title against Quinton Jackson, Lyoto Machida, Rashad Evans, Vitor Belfort, Chael Sonnen, Alexander Gustafsson, Glover Teixeira, Daniel Cormier. Stripped of title in April 2015. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

LAS VEGAS, NV - MAY 23:  Daniel Cormier reacts to his victory over Anthony Johnson in their UFC light heavyweight championship bout during the UFC 187 event at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 23, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/
LAS VEGAS, NV - MAY 23: Daniel Cormier reacts to his victory over Anthony Johnson in their UFC light heavyweight championship bout during the UFC 187 event at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 23, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Christian Petersen/

Daniel Cormier (2015-2018) Wins the vacant light heavyweight title by defeating Anthony Johnson at UFC 187 (5/23/15). Defended the title against Alexander Gustafsson, Anthony Johnson, Volkan Oezdemir. Vacated title on December 28, 2018. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

Jon Jones (2016) Defeats Ovince Saint Preux at UFC 197 (4/23/16) to win the interim light heavyweight title. Stripped of interim belt for failed drug test. Defeated Cormier for the undisputed light heavyweight title at UFC 214 (7/29/17). Jones failed a drug test and was stripped of the title and the fight ruled a no contest. Cormier reinstated as champion. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

Jon Jones (2018-2019) Defeats Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 232 (12/29/18) to win the vacant UFC light heavyweight title. Defended title against Anthony Smith, Thiago Santos, Dominick Reyes. Vacated belt on August 17, 2020. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

UFC 253: Jan Blachowicz Octagon Interview
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Unlock MORE of your inner combat sports fan with UFC Fight Pass! Fighting is what we live for. And no one brings you MORE live fights, new shows, and events across multiple combat sports from around the world. With a never-ending supply of fighting in every discipline, there’s always something new to watch. Leave it to the world’s authority in MMA to bring you the Ultimate 24/7 platform for MORE combat sports, UFC Fight Pass!

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UFC 253: Jan Blachowicz Octagon Interview
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Jan Blachowicz (2020-2021) Defeats Dominick Reyes at UFC 253 (9/27/20) to win the vacant UFC light heavyweight title. Defended title against Israel Adesanya. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

Glover Teixeira (2021) Defeats Jan Blachowicz via submission (rear-naked choke) at UFC 267 (10/30/21). (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

Jiri Prochazka of Czech Republic celebrates after his submission victory over Glover Teixeira of Brazil in the UFC light heavyweight championship fight
Jiri Prochazka of Czech Republic celebrates after his submission victory over Glover Teixeira of Brazil in the UFC light heavyweight championship fight

Jiri Prochazka (2022) Defeats Glover Teixeira at UFC 275 (6/11/22) in Singapore via fifth round submission (rear-naked choke). Vacated title on November 23, 2022 due to a shoulder injury that requires a significant rehabilitation period. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

UFC 282's main event featured former champion and No. 2 ranked light heavyweight Jan Blachowicz take on surging No. 3 ranked Magomed Ankalaev for the vacant, undisputed UFC light heavyweight championship. They fought to a draw on December 10th, 2022. 

Jamahal Hill Octagon Interview | UFC 283
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Unlock MORE of your inner combat sports fan with UFC Fight Pass! Fighting is what we live for. And no one brings you MORE live fights, new shows, and events across multiple combat sports from around the world. With a never-ending supply of fighting in every discipline, there’s always something new to watch. Leave it to the world’s authority in MMA to bring you the Ultimate 24/7 platform for MORE combat sports, UFC Fight Pass!

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Jamahal Hill Octagon Interview | UFC 283
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Jamahal Hill (2023) Defeats Glover Teixeira at UFC 283 (1/21/23) in Rio de Janeiro via unanimous decision. Vacated title after rupturing his Achilles tendon and requires a significant rehabilitation period. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass).

UFC CEO Dana White presents the championship belt to Alex Pereira of Brazil in the UFC light heavyweight championship fight during the UFC 300 event at T-Mobile Arena on April 13, 2024 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)
UFC CEO Dana White presents the championship belt to Alex Pereira of Brazil in the UFC light heavyweight championship fight during the UFC 300 event at T-Mobile Arena on April 13, 2024 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

Alex Pereira (Present) Defeats defeats Jiří Procházka at UFC 295 by KO (elbows) at 4:08 of Round 2. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass). Defended the title against Jamahal Hill at UFC 300 by KO at 3:14 of Round 1. (Watch On UFC Fight Pass)

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