Daniel Cormier shares his picks for Top 5 contestants in TUF history

By Susan Cox - June 1, 2023

Daniel Cormier is sharing his picks for the Top 5 contestants in TUF history.

Daniel Cormier, UFC

TUF 31 premiered on ESPN this past Tuesday, May 30th with Conor McGregor (22-6 MMA) and Michael Chandler (23-8 MMA) serving as opposing coaches.

Daniel Cormier, speaking on his ‘DC & RC’ podcast reflected on the most successful contestants to ever participate in ‘The Ultimate Fighter’.

Cormier’s Top 5, with commentary, are listed below:

#5  Kamaru Usman (20-3 MMA)

“He won ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ Season 21, and he was a former welterweight champion. But look at the dominance Usman showed over the course of his championship run. For me to have him at five speaks to the significance and the impact of the fighters I have listed above him have had in mixed martial arts.”

#4  Rose Namajunas (11-5 MMA)

“Rose Namajunas is a two-time strawweight champion of the world. She is a woman that was a runner-up on ‘The Ultimate Fighter,’ lost to Carla Esparza, but then was able to come back and win the championship over Joanna Jedrzejczyk, who was the greatest strawweight champion of the world. Then beat Zhang Weili, who none of us thought anyone can beat.”

Rashad Evans

#3  Rashad Evans (20-8 MMA)

“Rashad Evans was a guy that was small on ‘The Ultimate Fighter.’ He won ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ and became a light heavyweight champion, but he only did ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ at heavyweight because it was the only way for him to get on the show.” Daniel Cormier explained (h/t MMAJunkie). “He did ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ at heavyweight, won ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ at heavyweight, and then became a UFC Hall of Famer.”

#2  Michael Bisping (30-9 MMA)

“Michael Bisping was an agitator on ‘The Ultimate Fighter.’ He was a guy that annoyed everyone. He was also a guy that was on the receiving end of some horrible, horrible things over the course of his career. Fighting guys that were on the testosterone, getting his eye messed up, and the moment USADA came into play, Michael Bisping became a world champion. Michael Bisping is also now a UFC Hall of Famer.”

Forrest Griffin

Image via ufc.com

#1  Forrest Griffin (19-7 MMA)

“Without Forrest Griffin, we aren’t here, because if him and Stephan Bonnar did not have that classic that they had inside the Hard Rock Arena, we are not here today at ‘The Ultimate Fighter 1″ on Spike TV with Chuck (Liddell) and Tito (Ortiz) as the coaches. If those guys don’t put on that instant classic, the UFC doesn’t become what the UFC is today. So, for that reason only, I have Forrest Griffin at No. 1. He was also the light heavyweight champion and a Hall of Famer.”

It’s true that the reality show has produced a total of 35 UFC title contenders, 11 UFC champions and 6 UFC Hall of Famers.

Are you watching TUF 31? Do you agree with Daniel Cormier’s Top 5?

Share your thoughts in the comment section PENN Nation!

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