Tuesday, April 23

10 Nicest Fighters In UFC History

Highlights

  • Not all UFC fighters are aggressive; many are kind and compassionate souls loved by fans.
  • Georges St-Pierre retired as a legend but remains humble through kindness in mentoring.
  • Beneil Dariush’s gentle nature may have cost him lightweight title chances despite his skills.



For many MMA fans, all that matters is what happens within the confines of the octagon. The intense and brutal competition shows everyone around the world just how much heart and grit each fighter truly has. Admittedly, it’s easy to forget about the lives of the fighters outside the octagon.

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Being able to face off against some of the greatest fighters in the world doesn’t mean that every UFC fighter is a cold or angry person. The UFC is actually home to plenty of nice fighters. Without further ado, here are some fighters that many MMA fans genuinely consider truly endearing souls in and out the cage.


10 Georges St-Pierre Is Always All-Smiles

‘Rush’ Loves To Show Kindness


Date of Birth

May 19, 1981

Age

42

Year of UFC Debut

2004

MMA Record

26-2

GSP has dominated in the octagon, winning titles in two divisions (welterweight and middleweight). However, he is as sweet a soul as they come. Many can attest to his kindness and generosity. After retiring in 2017, GSP has gone onto many impressive ventures. He’s all in on many business projects, has done acting stints such as playing Batroc in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and even takes time to visit and mentor upcoming fighters such as Mike Malott.

His warm nature goes back to childhood, with GSP once detailing a run-in with a childhood bully years later where he found him begging on the street. He could have walked right on by, but instead, GSP gave the man some money and implored him to utilize his potential in order to do something fruitful with his life.


9 Beneil Dariush May Be Too Nice For His Own Good

Dariush’s Soft Nature Cost Him A Title Shot

Beneil Dariush prepares for a UFC fight

Date of Birth

May 6, 1989

Age

34

Year of UFC Debut

2014

MMA Record

22-6-1

Beneil Dariush is one of UFC’s best lightweights. He always references his faith and religion after his wins, thanking God every time. He also does many interviews at home, as he loves being around his wife and daughter. Unfortunately, this kindness may have actually hurt Dariush in the long run.


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He doesn’t talk trash or call people out, going as far as to say he’ll fight as many people as the UFC puts in front of him. It has led to consecutive losses to Charles Oliveira and Arman Tsarukyan, which may well have killed off Dariush’s lightweight title ambitions. Still, he always shows respect, with all his opponents professing he is indeed one of the most compassionate souls on the roster — ergo why fans love him, win or lose.

8 Robert Whittaker Is All About The Geek Life

‘The Reaper’ Just Loves Family And Gaming

Date of Birth

Dec. 20, 1990

Age

33

Year of UFC Debut

2012

MMA Record

24-7


The former UFC middleweight champion, Robert Whittaker, is loved by everyone, even rivals such as Israel Adesanya. While he has actually taken issue with being identified as a nice guy, he can no longer escape this tag.

It’s rare for Whittaker to even bother trash-talking his opponents when he knows he can let his actions in the octagon say everything. Instead, Whittaker focuses his energy on his main motivators. He has five kids, might be planning on more, and just wants to keep fighting for his family. To top it off, the gaming community loves Whittaker’s podcast, his livestreams and how — even on fight week — he spends time gaming with his father.

7 Max Holloway Is The ‘Daddest’ Man Alive

Holloway Wants To Keep Spreading Hawaiian Love


Date of Birth

Dec. 4, 1991

Age

32

Year of UFC Debut

2012

MMA Record

25-7

Max Holloway is the former UFC featherweight champion and another figure few people can criticize. His biggest enemies show him nothing but love. That’s because Holloway always speaks highly of them. In that sense, the Hawaiian legend is similar to Whittaker.

He is obsessed with livestreaming his gaming activities, and surfing with his family. This is why he wants to challenge Daniel Cormier for the ‘daddest’ man alive title. Holloway is such a sweetheart, even his UFC 300 opponent, Justin Gaethje, can’t help but hug him in a face-off. No matter what, Holloway really has all fighters gravitating to him, despite knowing he is one of UFC’s most dangerous boxers.


6 Raquel Pennington Is The Princess Of Positivity

‘Rocky’ Is Driven By Family, Unity And Hope

Raquel Pennington celebrates her UFC win with her baby

Date of Birth

Sep. 5, 1988

Age

35

Year of UFC Debut

2013

MMA Record

16-8

Raquel Pennington took the long, hard road, but she eventually won bantamweight gold at UFC 297. She soundly beat Mayra Bueno Silva, but before and after the fight, Pennington had nothing but love for her opponent. It sums up her career since she entered the UFC in 2013 via The Ultimate Fighter.


Pennington celebrated with her family, took the belt back to her ailing grandmother, and later, spoke highly of her rival and next in line, Julianna Peña. Despite the ups and downs, Pennington believes in kindness, being a role model and persevering. She might not be a popular name, but even the retired ex-champion, Amanda Nunes (someone who battered Pennington, herself), has kept telling the public how awesome a person Pennington is. Well, with gold in tow and more media to come, it is clear fans will be learning more about such a wholesome character — one who even tries to educate Sean Strickland rather than argue. Now, that’s rare patience!

5 Cory Sandhagen Never Speaks Ill Of Anyone

The ‘Sandman’ Just Wants Respectful, Honorable Fights

Cory Sandhagen celebrates beating UFC's Rob Font


Date of Birth

Apr. 20, 1992

Age

31

Year of UFC Debut

2018

MMA Record

17-4

Cory Sandhagen is such a soft-spoken, mild-mannered individual, it’s hard to think he’s an MMA fighter. But make no mistake, he is as deadly as they come. That said, Sandhagen is such a class act, even egotistical rivals like Sean O’Malley, Marlon ‘Chito’ Vera and Henry Cejudo have nothing to bad to say.

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Sandhagen has been expressing himself more on social media as well, disseminating thought pieces on life outside of fighting. He is all about intelligent conversations, book clubs and whatnot, which explains why he is so methodical and calculating a fighter. One has to hope, though, he doesn’t end up like Dariush, with the UFC overlooking him because he is a pushover who will just take any fight. Ultimately, however, fans from all walks of life admire and root for Sandhagen.


4 Mark Hunt Is The Epitome Of A Gentle Giant

Hunt Has Fought For Fighters’ Rights Outside The Cage

Mark Hunt raises his hands in the UFC octagon

Date of Birth

Mar. 23, 1974

Age

49

Year of UFC Debut

2010

MMA Record

13-14-1 (1 NC)

Anyone who’s a fan of the UFC heavyweight division should know exactly who Mark Hunt is. While the monster of a man brutalized his competition in the octagon, it might surprise a lot of people to find out he’s a pretty caring guy. Mark Coleman was the first-ever UFC heavyweight champion, and after needing funds to cover medical expenses, Hunt was more than happy to donate.


He left a heartfelt message for the UFC veteran as well, coming off as a stalwart figure and gentle giant. Audiences just love his cavalier attitude as well, ready to always swing and go out on his shield. The entertainment factor aside, Hunt fought for fighters’ rights with a lawsuit against UFC regarding some fighters competing using banned substances. Admittedly, it hasn’t panned out in his favor, which is why fans are hoping his bare knuckle debut in 2024 doesn’t cause him further damage after such a grueling career.

3 Dustin Poirier Is The Gift That Keeps On Giving

‘El Diamante’ Loves Doing Charity Work

Dustin Poirier shrugs in the UFC octagon


Date of Birth

Jan. 19, 1989

Age

35

Year of UFC Debut

2011

MMA Record

29-8 (1 NC)

Dustin Poirier has one of the best C.V.s in the game. He has a litany of scalps in the featherweight and lightweight divisions, claimed interim lightweight gold, and made a ton of money by beating Conor McGregor. He also shows respect to his opponents, interacts with fans pretty well, and sets an example for new fighters.

However, it’s his charity work with his Good Fight Foundation that really illustrates how much his personality shines as the ‘Diamond.’ Poirier’s foundation constantly helps the impoverished in his Louisiana hometown, plus he partners with other groups. He will be working on charity projects in Zimbabwe with new UFC star, Themba Gorimbo too, reaffirming Poirier’s heartfelt vision knows no bounds.


2 Demian Maia Never Wanted To Hurt His Opponent

Maia Was All About Zen Finishes

Demian Maia preps to fight UFC's Belal Muhammad

Date of Birth

Nov. 6, 1977

Age

46

Year of UFC Debut

2007

MMA Record

28-11

Pretty much every single person that comes into contact with Demian Maia agrees on one thing: he is a stand-up guy. Maia has even admitted that his goal was to prove that you don’t need to be a particularly violent person in order to be a serious threat in MMA.


Utilizing expert-level grappling and submissions, Maia wanted to quickly end fights, ensuring there were no injuries for everyone involved. Someone who can take on top-tier opponents, offer them mercy by making them tap, and still be a nice guy after he wipes the floor with them is hard to come by. It is why, even after his retirement, the welterweight division holds the ex-contender in such high regard.

1 Stephen Thompson Doesn’t Anger Anyone

‘Wonderboy’ Leaves Everyone Adoring His Zest

Stephen Thompson Looks Into A Camera

Date of Birth

Feb. 11, 1983

Age

41

Year of UFC Debut

2012

MMA Record

17-7-1


No list about the nicest UFC fighters would be complete without the mention of Stephen Thompson. It’s hard to find an interaction with Thompson that doesn’t show him with a smile constantly plastered across his face. Even when Colby Covington talked smack about Thompson picking kids up for his karate class, Thompson turned the other cheek, refusing to sink to that depraved level.

Stephen, instead, respects the accomplishments of his opponents, preferring to let his elite striking and kickboxing do the talking. Thompson’s nice-guy demeanor resonates with fans when they interact with him in person or online. So much so, many just want to hear his breakdowns and wisdom of other fights. He’s such a pleasant figure, when UFC ran into a pay dispute with him in 2023, diehards were quite vocal about UFC president, Dana White, mistreating one of the company’s best ambassadors. That’s fan loyalty you can’t buy or fake.


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