Each month, MMA-Paradise.com will spotlight the fighter who made the most impact for that individual month.
April: Nick Diaz
Diaz defeated Paul Daley at Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Daley via TKO (punches) at 4:57 of round 1 and became the first Strikeforce fighter to successfully defend the welterweight belt 3 times in a row. With the win over Daley, Diaz has seen his options for a big fight in MMA or a big ticket professional boxing fight.
March: Jon “Bones” Jones
Jones defeated Mauricio Shogun Rua by TKO (body punch and knee) to become the youngest UFC light heavyweight champion. After landing an early flying knee which significantly hurt his opponent, the fight was extremely one sided for Jones. After a dominant and convincing performance, a body shot and knee to the head dropped the champion causing the referee to swiftly step in and halt the bout.
February: Anderson “The Spider” Silva
Anderson Silva proved why he is considered the number one pound-for-pound fighter on the planet, when he defeated Vitor Belfort at UFC 126 on February 26th. Silva landed a brutal front kick to Belfort’s jaw followed up with punches on the ground, making his record streak of title defenses to eight.
January: Mark “The Machine” Hominick
When World Extreme Cagefighting merged with the Ultimate Fighting Championship, all WEC fighters were transferred to the UFC. Mark Hominick then made his UFC debut facing former training partner, George Roop at UFC Fight Night 23 in a #1 contender bout. Hominick stopped Roop via punches in the very first round to earn his shot against UFC Featherweight Champion, Jose Aldo at UFC 129.
December: Alistair “The Reem” Overeem
On December 11, at the Ariake Coliseum Alistair fought at and won the K-1 World Grand Prix 2010 Final. Overeem then faced Todd Duffee on December 31, 2010 at Dynamite!! 2010, defeating Duffee by knockout at 19 seconds of the very first round to win the DREAM Interim Heavyweight Championship. He is the current Strikeforce Heavyweight Champion, DREAM Interim Heavyweight Champion, and K-1 World Grand Prix Champion, and made history by being the only fighter in combat sports to hold a world title in both MMA and in K-1 kickboxing at the same time.
November: “The Prodigy” BJ Penn
After losing back-to-back fights to Frankie Edgar, BJ Penn bursted back fighting Matt Hughes at UFC 123 in a rubber match after their previous two fights at UFC 46 and UFC 63. Penn defeated Hughes in 21 seconds of the first round by knockout after flooring Hughes with a right hand and following that punch with additional strikes on the mat earning knockout of the night honors in the process.
October: Cain Velasquez
Velasquez defeated Brock Lesnar for the UFC Heavyweight Championship via TKO in the first round at UFC 121 on October 23, 2010 to become the first Mexican American to win the Heavyweight championship in the UFC.
September: Jason “Mayhem” Miller
Jason “Mayhem” Miller battled Kazushi Sakuraba in the DREAM.16 co-main event. Mayhem dropped the gauntlet on himself by publicly calling for a submission finish on the legend. It was a feat four different members of the Gracie family, including Royce and Renzo, couldn’t do – yet he accomplished it effortlessly defeating Sakuraba via arm triangle choke.
August: Frankie “The Answer” Edgar
At UFC 112, Edgar was matched against lightweight champion BJ Penn. After a long, back-and-forth, predominantly standing fight, the judges’ scorecards were called on for a decision. The bout was deemed close enough that Edgar’s first title defense took the form of a UFC 118 rematch against Penn. Edgar defeated Penn via unanimous decision to retain the UFC Lightweight Championship, this time with no controversy after taking Penn down multiple times and out-striking him throughout all five rounds.
July: Chris “The Crippler” Leben
Leben faced Aaron Simpson at The Ultimate Fighter: Team Liddell vs. Team Ortiz Finale, defeating the previously unbeaten Simpson via TKO at 4:17 into Round 2 earning the knockout of the night bonus award. After Wanderlei Silva was forced out of his UFC 116 bout with Yoshihiro Akiyama, Leben won via submission (triangle choke) at 4:40 in round 3 earning the fight of the night award and giving him his second win for the month of July.
June: Fabricio “Vai Cavalo” Werdum
Werdum faced WAMMA Heavyweight Champion Fedor Emelianenko on June 26, 2010 at Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Werdum. In an enormous upset victory, Werdum forced Fedor to tap via triangle/armbar 1:09 into the first round. The victory ended Emelianenko’s 28-fight unbeaten streak while propelling Werdum’s status up the Heavyweight rankings.
May: Alistair “Demolition Man” Overeem
Overeem defended his Strikeforce Heavyweight Championship against Brett Rogers winning via TKO (punches) in the first round. In his post-fight interview, Alistair Overeem declared for another time that he wants to fight the WAMMA Heavyweight Champion Fedor Emelianenko.
April: Jose “Junior” Aldo
WEC featherweight champion Jose Aldo defeated former title holder Urijah Faber via unanimous decision (49-45, 49-45, 50-45). Aldo was able to use effective leg and body kicks (a total of thirty-two) to stifle Faber, sending him to the canvas several times with solid kicks.
March: Kenny “KenFlo” Florian
UFC Lightweight Kenny Florian, who most recently tapped former #1 ranked Shooto and PRIDE lightweight Champion, Takanori Gomi on March 31st, 2010 at UFC Ultimate Fight Night 21: Florian vs. Gomi.
February: Cain Velasquez
UFC Heavyweight Cain Velasquez, who became only the second man to stop Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira on February 21st, 2010 at UFC 111: Nogueira vs. Velazquez.