10. TKO Major League MMA (2000-08)
Canada has long been one of the best markets for mixed martial arts, and its great concentration of elite fighters has given the sparsely populated country an outsized presence in the world of high-level MMA. The backbone of that presence was, for many years, a network of excellent regional promotions that consistently produced strong lineups of talented fighters. TKO/UCC, which operated between 2000 and 2008, was the best of the bunch.
Practically every Canadian fighter of any note who fought during that period got his start in TKO. Each of George St. Pierre’s six non-Ultimate Fighting Championships bouts came under the organization’s banner. Yves Jabouin had five bouts in the promotion, Sam Stout had 11 and Mark Hominick fought for the company on an incredible 15 occasions. UFC title challenger David Loiseau had 13 fights in TKO/UCC. The list goes on, but the point is clear.
The network of relationships that brought those fighters to TKO nurtured the gyms, coaches and organizations that made the country a disproportionate powerhouse on the global scene; and since its demise, the Canadian scene has not been the same.
Number 9 » Smackgirl
« Previous Sherdog’s Top 10: One-Round Fights Next Sherdog’s Top 10: Rising Stars, 2015 First Edition »