The rapidly growing world of mixed martial arts (MMA) continues to excite fans with incredible displays of strength, agility, and mastery of complex fighting techniques. We watch in awe as men and women of various weight classes enter the cage to do battle, testing their skill at kickboxing, wrestling, jiu-jitsu, or any number of hand-to-hand combat styles. Our eyes widen and jaws drop as we watch a brutal roundhouse kick send someone crashing to the ground, or a rear naked choke threaten to render an opponent unconscious. We delight in these near-barbaric exchanges, cheering for more blood, rewarding the most devastating submission or the fastest knockout. But we often forget that these athletes are people just like us, with families and loved ones that look on with trepidation, perhaps holding their breath each time their fighter enters the octagon.
Indeed, more than any other sport, the burden falls heavy on the wives and girlfriends (WAGs) of MMA fighters. One can only imagine the difficulty of watching a loved one literally risk their life each time they step into the ring to do work. These women are counted on to provide a bedrock of support day in and day out, and they do so with incredible levels of style and grace. This post is an homage to these dedicated supporters but, of course, it would be foolish to ignore the fact that, like many WAGs of professional athletes, these ladies represent some of the best looking women around.
Of course, beauty is subjective, but we have developed certain standards that allow for the elevation of certain people possessing basic physical qualities. This top 20 ranking represents one man's own subjective interpretation based on the rather limited pool of candidates made visible by the internet. But you aren't here to read my musings on beauty; you're here for these lovely ladies. Without further ado, the 20 hottest MMA WAGs:
20 Giana Natasha
Myles Jury is a young, up-and-comer in the UFC ranks, but he’s already acting the part by dating this San Diego hottie, Giana Natasha. There isn’t much information about this good-looking Southern California gal, but perhaps as Jury’s career, and their relationship, develops we’ll see more of her in the spotlight and get a better sense of who she is. Nonetheless, she’s certainly hot enough to start off this list.
19 Marivi Weidman
Middleweight champion Chris Weidman rose to notoriety after defeating the seeming invincible Anderson Silva. Now he’s a common household name among UFC enthusiasts. But he credits his rise to success to his wife, mother of his children, “his rock,” Marivi. The two have known each other since high school and were married in 2009. Weidman was very emotional in an interview with Ariel Helwani about her, saying:
"My wife was busting her ass, she was getting her CPA, she was pregnant, working everyday. You know it was tough, not being able to provide... she was getting her CPA, and pregnant with my daughter, and studying for her CPA and working all the time. I was kind of trying to live my dream, so I felt very selfish. … She was supportive."
18 Dee Devlin
Conor McGregor may just be the most exciting MMA star right now, having just crushed Chad Mendes in an interim featherweight championship fight. He is flashy, mouthy, and incredibly proud of his Irish heritage. But perhaps his best feature is longtime girlfriend Dee Devlin. She is also Irish, incredibly cute, and is the brains of the operation, quitting her job to join McGregor’s team and help handle finances. McGregor notes that here support has been invaluable to his success, and with those looks it’s easy to see why.
17 Jenny Dollaway
Wife of middleweight fighter C.B. Dollaway, Jenny is a beautiful blonde, originally from California. The couple now live in Arizona and have a baby girl, adding to this all-around good-looking family. C.B. credits Jenny for being an excellent support system, which can often be difficult for loved ones of members of such a dangerous profession. Dollaway is in the fashion industry, having studied at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising in Los Angeles.
16 Abby Raines
Chad Mendes recently suffered a tough defeat to new interim champ Conor McGregor, but at least he can take solace in knowing that he gets to come home to this adorable girlfriend. Mendes’ girlfriend Abby played volleyball at West Virginia University but Mendes doesn’t seem to mind having his lady tower over him. She has a wholesome, hometown girl appeal that could soften the blow of any loss. Hopefully some comfort from Abby can help him rebound and get back on track for the featherweight title.
15 Renata Ribeiro
Former heavyweight champion Mauricio “Shogun” Rua got another big win when he married his lovely wife, Renata Ribeiro in 2007. Renata is a former professional beach volleyball player, representing Brazil in the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing. Anyone that has watched any professional volleyball knows that these women are extremely fit, so it’s no surprise that Renata represents the good looks in the Rua family.
14 Melissa Pellegrino
Retired MMA fighter Kurt Pellegrino met his now wife in high school and never locked back (why would he?). There’s no wonder that he decided to lock things up, as she seems as dedicated to supporting his MMA career as she is beautiful. She is the mother of their daughter Priscilla and now supports Kurt as he coaches the future MMA athletes at his mixed martial arts gym in New Jersey.
13 Heidi Northcott
Chuck Lidell is a true MMA legend, providing a real face to the sport back in the late 1990s and capping off an extraordinary career with an induction into the UFC Hall of Fame. It comes as no surprise, then, that he married a very cool and super hot woman. Heidi has both the looks and the brains, with a degree from USC, a successful internet company, and an avid professional poker playing resume. It also doesn’t hurt that she is quite easy on the eyes.
12 Jennifer Mir
Frank Mir was a two-time UFC heavyweight champion and still holds a series of records in the heavyweight division. Mir currently holds the record for the longest tenured fighter in the heavyweight division, but perhaps more impressive is his over 10-year tenure as husband to the lovely Jennifer Mir. Frank met the beautiful Jennifer when she was working at the Spearmint Rhino in Las Vegas and she is still holding down her rocking looks three kids later and getting into her late 30s. It just proves that age can’t stop these ladies from being some of the hottest in the game.
11 Lisette Gadzuric
Lisette Gadzuric has some experience dating major athletes as she was previously married to NBA player Dan Gadzuric. Now she’s entered the world of MMA, dating former lightweight champion Anthony Pettis. When she’s not showing off her stunning looks at UFC events, Lizette is very active in the non-profit sector, working with multiple charities. The mother of two splits her time living in both Milwaukee and just outside of Las Vegas.
10 Miesha Tate
Miesha Tate may be a fighter herself, but she is also dating a fellow fighter, Bryan Caraway. While Tate has been unsuccessful in her battles with Ronda Rousey, she has still become a big name in the women's division, particularly because of her long standing feud with the Bantamweight champ. Tate is peeved that she's not the current no.1 contender, but it seems like only a matter of time before she gets another shot at Rousey.
9 JJ Meyer
The lovely and alluring JJ Meyer has been dating MMA fighter Brandon Thatch for some time now. The hair stylist and aspiring model has a variety of different “looks” that make her an intriguing catch, but her quasi-punk rock/emo look may be her best. The stylist's versatility and generally killer looks make her a lock for one of the hottest MMA girlfriends out there today.
8 Megan Olivi
Much to, I’m sure, his delight, flyweight MMA fighter Joseph Benavidez somehow landed former UFC reporter, and all-around hottie, Megan Olivi. Megan is a talented journalist, with an MA from Seton Hall, and she recently transitioned from the world of UFC reporting to a position at Fox Sports. She still covers the world of fighting and training, and it appears that Benavidez is hoping to keep her permanently involved with MMA; the two are scheduled to wed in October.
7 Brittany Smith-Sonnen
Chael Sonnen had a long and illustrious career in the octagon, but perhaps his biggest win was landing (and marrying) this gorgeous blonde, Brittany Smith (now Smith-Sonnen). Chael snagged a first date by “borrowing” her phone and then using it to call himself so that he would have her phone number. Miraculously it worked! Hey, if he could snag this kind of talent with that trick, isn’t it worth trying during your next night out?
6 Shealen Uaiwa
The longtime partner of former UFC champion BJ Penn, Shealen is a Hawaiin-born beauty who aspires to be a model. The couple isn’t married but have two children together, and rumor is that BJ refers to her as his wife. Either way, she has that natural beauty of a girl from the islands and BJ is certainly one lucky fellow. Being with her probably made it a little easier to step away from the octagon.
5 Seager Condit
Former interim welterweight champion Carlos Condit had the extreme fortune of meeting his future wife, Seager, at his own gym back in 2005 and the pair have been inseparable ever since. This stunner says she couldn’t be happier with her husband’s success, but she still gets nervous every time he fights. Seager is a personal trainer, and it shows! With that killer smile and toned physique, it’s no surprise that she’s an expert at sculpting bodies.
4 Joana Prado
Vitor Belfor’s wife is this smoking hot Brazilian actress named Joana. She is, perhaps, better known in South America as Feiticeira (meaning Sorceress), for the character she played on a television show. With those looks and that body, it’s not surprising that she cast a serious spell on Vitor. I’m confident he doesn’t mind that she had a stint as an “adult model.”
3 Kristie Jane McKeon
Ross Pearson struck gold when he started dating super hot fitness model and UFC ring girl Kristie Jane McKeon. The British lightweight fighter not only won the Ultimate Fighter: Unites States v. United Kingdom Championship, but also McKeon’s heart. The two were married in 2014. Kristie is one smoking hot Aussie, and Pearson, having found love in the Octagon, may be the luckiest Brit in the UFC.
2 Clark Gilmer (Florian)
Kenny Florian struck it rich when he proposed to model and actress Clark Gilmer. Gilmer may be one of the classiest and most stunning women to ever hook up with an MMA star. She was on America’s Next Top Model, the Millionaire Matchmaker, and had a small role in the Academy Award winning film “Argo.” She continues to work as an actress and model, with a small role in the soon to be on video “Bikini Model Academy.”
1 Brittney Brannagan
This knockout model has been dating flyweight fighter Ian McCall for the last couple of years and the UFC world is better for it. Though Brannagan is a couple of inches taller than the mustachioed McCall, the only thing anyone notices is her incredible physique. Brannagan is proof that the little guys in the UFC can still land some of the hottest women in the world.
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