Robert Whittaker (Mike Sloan/Sherdog)

Mid-Year Review: 2018’s Best UFC Fights So Far

The UFC is yet to put on a disappointing pay-per-view so far in 2018.

UFC 223 was an exception, but we all know what happened there. UFC 224 was a questionable one in terms of depth on paper, but it would be quite ignorant to say the end result was waste of money.

With many great fights already put on through the midpoint of the year, it’s time to look back at the five best fights of 2018 so far, in no particular order.


Robert Whittaker vs. Yoel Romero, UFC 225

This recent rematch at UFC 225 is clearly a no-brainer. What a fight it was. The bout was highly anticipated and should have been a title contest, but Romero missed weight. The fight itself surpassed the already high expectations, even if Romero was out of contention for the belt. In a crazy back-and-forth affair, it was Whittaker who managed to come out the victor via split decision in what’s certainly a “Fight of the Year” contender. It’s sure to be listed as a classic fight in several years.

Zabit Magomedsharipov vs. Kyle Bochniak, UFC 223

This fight was originally supposed to be on the UFC Fight Pass portion of the show, but later took a promotion as a result of the “Conor McGregor incident.” With what was supposed to be the best card of the year at the time breaking down and anticipation dropping significantly, this amazing fight managed to deliver in a big way and save the show somewhat, while also showcasing to the world the amazing Magomedsharipov the very tough Bochniak.

Dustin Poirier vs. Justin Gaethje, UFC on Fox 29

There was no way that this fight wasn’t going to deliver, right? You put two fireworks together and it only makes for a bigger explosion. In this case, that amounts to a great fight. Both fighters turned in exciting performances, but there could only be one winner. Poirier came out of the fight with arguably the biggest win of his career and took a huge step toward a title shot.

Jeremy Stephens vs. Doo Ho Choi, UFC Fight Night 124

This was another fight that was inevitably going to be exciting. Throughout his long career, Stephens has never been involved in a boring fight. And who could forget about the fight Choi had against Cub Swanson? Stephens and Choi engaged in a superb fight due to the fact that they both had massive power in their hands and both love to trade in the middle of the Octagon. Stephens ultimately managed to grab the victory over the young Korean.

Rose Namajunas vs. Joanna Jędrzejczyk, UFC 223

This last one was very tough, but the rematch between Namajunas and Jędrzejczyk, who originally met at UFC 217 late in 2017, deserves consideration. This fight, along with the scrap between Magomedsharipov and Bochniak, managed to give the fans some consolation for what happened to the entirety of the UFC 223 card. The two best strawweight ladies duked it out for 25 minutes to decide once and for all who would walk away with the crown and the status as the best 115-pounder out there. Namajunas proved the first fight was no fluke and took home back-to-back wins against one of the greatest female fighters of all time.