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Matt Hughes – UFC Fighter


Matthew Allen Hughes (born October 13, 1973 in Hillsboro, Illinois) is a professional mixed martial arts fighter and a former UFC Welterweight Champion. He trains as part of the Miletich Fighting Systems team along with former UFC Heavyweight Champion Tim Sylvia, and former UFC champions Pat Miletich and Jens Pulver. Hughes is known for his extreme strength and ‘ground-and-pound’ style. A devout Christian, he has a twin brother named Mark Hughes who wrestled and defeated Matt in Junior High School. His brother no longer trains in mixed martial arts, but has competed in the UFC.
MMA career

Hughes won his first UFC Welterweight title at UFC 34: High Voltage on November 2, 2001 when,stuck in a triangle choke while holding Carlos Newton in the air, he slammed Newton violently to the mat with what could almost be described as a powerbomb, causing his opponent to hit his head and lose consciousness.

He successfully defended his championship belt several times thereafter, defeating Hayato Sakurai, Carlos Newton (in a rematch), Gil Castillo, Sean Sherk, and Frank Trigg. He kept the title until UFC 46, when he was submitted by Hawaiian Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu specialist B.J. Penn via rear naked choke. The title was vacated upon a contract dispute between B.J. Penn and the UFC. Hughes regained the vacant welterweight title by submitting Canadian contender Georges St. Pierre via armbar in the final second of the first round at UFC 50.

After regaining his title, Hughes successfully retained it in a rematch with Frank Trigg. After being accidentally hit in the groin early in the first round, Hughes looked to the referee; however, the referee had not seen the strike and Trigg capitalized on Hughes’ distraction by staggering Hughes with a barrage of punches. Eventually the fight went to the ground and Hughes fought off rear naked choke attempt. Hughes was able to escape and go on to win a decisive second victory with a rear naked choke of his own. Hughes’s next fight took place at UFC 56, where he was scheduled to fight Judo practitioner Karo Parisyan. After Parysian suffered a hamstring injury and could not fight, Joe Riggs took his place. Hughes defeated Riggs in the first round by [kimura]. The match was originally scheduled as a title bout, but since Riggs could not meet the 170-pound Welterweight weight limit, it became a non-title fight. On May 27, 2006, Matt Hughes defeated Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu legend Royce Gracie by strikes from the back mount position. Moments before the stoppage, Royce Gracie was caught in a kimura from the side mount position; although Hughes appeared to have the submission locked in, he did not finish it. After the fight he told Grappling Magazine that he “let go of the armbar because he did not want to break Gracie’s arm”.

In September 2006, Hughes defended his title in a rematch against B.J. Penn, stopping him in the third round. Although Penn dominated the first 2 rounds, he struggled in the third with Hughes taking advantage. British MMA/wrestling magazine “Fighting Spirit” reported that Penn had sustained a rib injury late in round 2, leaving him gasping for air. This may explain his lack of performance in the latter round, though some attribute this to his a lack of cardio. Afterwards, Georges St. Pierre (who was supposed to face Hughes at this event but pulled out due to injury) stepped into the ring and congratulated Hughes on his win, but also stated “I was not impressed by your performance.” This verbal jab may be attributed to the Ultimate Fighter 4 series, where Hughes made a few off color remarks to GSP and a fighter that took part in the dinner, in an attempt to embarrass GSP in front of the television cameras.

On November 18, 2006 at UFC 65: Bad Intentions, Georges St. Pierre defeated Matt Hughes by TKO via strikes at 1:25 of round two, ending Hughes’ title reign. In the first round, Hughes sustained two unintentional kicks near the groin; after Hughes went down from the second kick, St. Pierre was given a warning by referee “Big” John McCarthy. Hughes however stated in his post fight interview that the second kick mainly affected his legs, rather than his groin.[2] St. Pierre ended the fight with a head kick which stunned Hughes and knocked him to the mat, following up with a flurry of punches and elbows that forced referee John McCarthy to call a stop to the contest at 1:25 of the second round.

On March 3 2007, Hughes returned to the Octagon for UFC 68: Uprising and defeated Chris Lytle by unanimous decision winning every round.[3]

Following an upset championship win by Matt Serra over Georges St. Pierre at UFC 69, it was announced by UFC President Dana White that Hughes will again be fighting for the Welterweight title in November of 2007.

The Ultimate Fighter

In 2005, Hughes participated as a coach opposite Rich Franklin in the second season of the Spike TV reality television series, The Ultimate Fighter. Hughes will also coach on the forthcoming sixth season of the show, opposite UFC Welterweight champion Matt Serra.

Personal Life

Hughes and his wife Audra have two children, son Joey and daughter Hanna Grace. [4].

Matt is five minutes older than his twin brother Mark. Matt and Mark have an older sister, Beth Ulricy.[5].


  • Hughes was two-time 145 lb. state wrestling champion for IHSA (Illinois High School Association) Class A in 1991 and 1992.
  • Matt is a two-time Division I All-American wrestler, with an 8th and a 5th place finish in the 158 lb. division.
  • Matt Hughes’ Octagon entrance music is “A Country Boy Can Survive” by Hank Williams Jr.
  • Hughes supports the Rancho3M orphanage in Mexico and some of the profit from his gear, which he sells through his website, goes to the orphanage.
  • Hughes went to college at Lincoln College, in Lincoln, Illinois and then at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

MMA record

43-5-0 (wins-losses-draws) [1][6]
Date Result Opponent Event Method Round Time Notes
03/03/2007 Win Chris Lytle UFC 68 – The Uprising Decision (Unanimous) 3 5:00 All 3 Judges Score 30-27
11/18/2006 Loss Georges St. Pierre UFC 65 – Bad Intentions TKO (Strikes) 2 1:25 Lost UFC Welterweight Title
9/23/2006 Win B.J. Penn UFC 63 – Hughes vs. Penn TKO (Strikes) 3 3:53 UFC Welterweight Title
5/27/2006 Win Royce Gracie UFC 60 – Hughes vs. Gracie TKO (Strikes) 1 4:39 Catchweight non-title fight
11/19/2005 Win Joe Riggs UFC 56 – Full Force Submission (Kimura) 1 3:28 Non-title fight (Riggs was unable to make weight)
4/16/2005 Win Frank Trigg UFC 52 – Couture vs Liddell 2 Submission (Rear Naked Choke) 1 4:05 UFC Welterweight Title
10/22/2004 Win Georges St. Pierre UFC 50 – The War of ’04 Submission (Armbar) 1 4:59 Regained UFC Welterweight Title
6/19/2004 Win Renato Verissimo UFC 48 – Payback Decision (Unanimous) 3 5:00
1/31/2004 Loss B.J. Penn UFC 46 – Supernatural Submission (Rear Naked Choke) 1 4:39 Lost UFC Welterweight Title
11/21/2003 Win Frank Trigg UFC 45 – Revolution Submission (Rear Naked Choke) 1 3:54
4/25/2003 Win Sean Sherk UFC 42 – Sudden Impact Decision (Unanimous) 5 5:00
11/22/2002 Win Gil Castillo UFC 40 – Vendetta TKO (Cut) 1 5:00
7/13/2002 Win Carlos Newton UFC 38 – Brawl at the Hall TKO (Strikes) 4 3:27
3/22/2002 Win Hayato Sakurai UFC 36 – Worlds Collide TKO (Strikes) 4 3:01
11/2/2001 Win Carlos Newton UFC 34 – High Voltage KO (Slam) 2 1:27 Won UFC Welterweight Title
9/8/2001 Win Steve Gomm EC 43-Extreme Challenge 43 TKO 2 3:18
8/11/2001 Win Hiromitsu Kanehara Rings-10th Anniversary Decision (Majority) 3 5:00
7/13/2001 Win Chatt Lavender EC 41-Extreme Challenge 41 Submission (Side Choke) 3 2:31
6/16/2001 Win Scott Johnson EC 40-Extreme Challenge 40 KO 1 3:24
5/11/2001 Win John Cronk Gladiators 14 Submission (Strikes) N/A N/A
3/31/2001 Win Bruce Nelson FCC 4-Freestyle Combat Challenge 4 Submission (Strikes) 1 3:01
3/17/2001 Win Brett Al-azzawi Rings USA-Battle of Champions Submission (Armbar) 1 3:27
2/8/2001 Loss Jose Landi-Jons Shidokan Jitsu-Warriors War 1 KO (Knee to the Head) 1 4:45
12/16/2000 Loss Dennis Hallman UFC 29 – Defense of the Belts Submission (Armbar) 1 0:20
11/12/2000 Win Maynard Marcum Rings Australia-Free Fight Battle Submission (Keylock) 1 6:29
9/30/2000 Win Robbie Newman Rings USA-Rising Stars Final Submission (Arm Triangle Choke) 1 1:40
8/23/2000 Win Chris Haseman Rings-Millennium Combine 3 Decision (Unanimous) 2 5:00
6/29/2000 Win Joe Guist EC 35-Extreme Challenge 35 Submission (Armbar) 1 2:45
6/9/2000 Win Marcelo Aguiar UFC 26 – Ultimate Field of Dreams TKO (Cut) 1 4:34
5/21/2000 Win Shawn Peters EC 32-Extreme Challenge 32 Submission (Choke) 1 2:52
5/13/2000 Win Alexandre Barros WEF 9-World Class Decision (Unanimous) 3 5:00
4/15/2000 Win Eric DaVila SB 17-SuperBrawl 17 Submission (Keylock) 2 3:24
1/15/2000 Win Jorge Pereira WEF 8-Goin’ Platinum TKO (Doctor Stoppage) 1 6:00
11/20/1999 Win Daniel Vianna IE-Independent Event TKO (Slam) 1  ?
11/13/1999 Win LaVerne Clark EC 29-Extreme Challenge 29 Submission (Rear Naked Choke) 2 1:35
11/13/1999 Win Tom Schmitz EC 29-Extreme Challenge 29 Submission (Eye Injury) 1 0:48
11/13/1999 Win Joe Doerksen EC 29-Extreme Challenge 29 Submission (Strikes) 2 0:25
9/24/1999 Win Valeri Ignatov UFC 22 – There Can Be Only One Champion Decision 3 5:00
5/29/1999 Win Akihiro Gono Shooto-10th Anniversary Event Decision (Unanimous) 3 5:00
4/24/1999 Win Erick Snyder JKD-Challenge 4 TKO (Slam) N/A N/A
4/2/1999 Win Joe Stern EC 23-Extreme Challenge 23 Submission 1 2:30
12/11/1998 Win Ryan Stout ES-Extreme Shootfighting TKO (Towel Thrown In) 2 5:00
10/17/1998 Loss Dennis Hallman EC 21-Extreme Challenge 21 TKO (Guillotine Choke) 1 0:17
10/17/1998 Win Dave Menne EC 21-Extreme Challenge 21 Decision 1 15:00
10/17/1998 Win Victor Hunsaker EC 21-Extreme Challenge 21 TKO (Strikes) 1 1:39
4/25/1998 Win Craig Quick JKD-Challenge 1 Submission (Strikes) N/A N/A

Notes and references

  • ^ a b Hughes’ official website & Sherdog profile record one less win than his UFC profile. The record listed here represents the one given on his official website & Sherdog profile.
  • ^ “The second time I went down, it wasn’t really because of my groin, but it affected my legs more than my groin. I don’t know if it’s a nerve thing or what happened.” Matt Hughes, UFC 65 post fight press conference
  • ^ UFC 68: The Uprising
  • ^ Interview with St. Louis Today
  • ^ Interview with St. Louis Today
  • ^ Sherdog Fight Finder – Matt Hughes’ Mixed Martial Arts Statistics. Retrieved on 2006-06-02.
  • External links

    • Matt Hughes’ official website
    • Official UFC profile
    • Professional MMA record for Matt Hughes from
    • IMDB page

    Previous champion
    Carlos Newton
    3rd UFC Welterweight Champion

    November 2, 2001 – January 31, 2004

    Next champion
    BJ Penn

    Previous champion
    BJ Penn
    5th UFC Welterweight Champion

    October 22, 2004 – November 18, 2006

    Next champion
    Georges St. Pierre

    The Ultimate Fighter – Season 2
    Josh Burkman | Dan Christison | Luke Cummo | Marcus Davis | Rashad Evans | Melvin Guillard | Jorge Gurgel | Brad Imes | Keith Jardine | Eli Joslin | Rob MacDonald | Sammy Morgan | Tom Murphy | Seth Petruzelli | Kerry Schall | Kenny Stevens | Joe Stevenson | Anthony Torres | Jason Von Flue | Mike Whitehead

    Coaches: Rich Franklin | Matt Hughes

    * Page name: Matt Hughes – UFC Fighter
    * Author: Wikipedia contributors
    * Publisher: Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.
    * Permanent link:


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