5 Types of UFC Belts | Easily Explained
There have been many types of UFC belts since the UFC first began, in 1993.
In this page, we will explain each type of UFC belt, what each belt means, how the belt can be won, and who each belt is for.
Table of Contents
1. First UFC Belt
The first UFC belt was won by Mark Coleman, when he defeated Dan Severn to become the first UFC Heavyweight champion in history.
This belt's appearance is quite different than the ones fan have grown accustomed to.
The first UFC belt had more of a boxing-look to it, as the gold plates were much smaller than the surrounding leather.
Feb7.1997— MMA History Today (@MMAHistoryToday) February 8, 2021
24 years ago today,
Mark Coleman defeated Dan Severn to become the first UFC Heavyweight Champion in history. pic.twitter.com/GCSEo4tKSj
At the time, this belt could only be won by a UFC Heavyweight competing against the current UFC Heavyweight champion.
2. Classic Golden UFC Belt
In 2001, Zuffa would purchase the UFC under the ownership of Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta along with Dana White.
They would immediately introduce the classic Golden UFC belt, which would be the standard UFC belt awarded for the undisputed champions of each weight class.
This belt has a massive gold plate in the center of the belt, with a unique design on the edges, with the letters 'UFC' largely positioned in the center, and 'Ultimate Fighting Championship' positioned underneath those letters.
On both the left and right side of the centerpiece, there's a much smaller gold piece that says 'UFC Champion' with a thick border of the UFC octagon behind it.
When a UFC champion wore this belt around their waist, you could clearly see that they were a UFC champion from the side, as well as from both side angles.
The Golden UFC Belt era would last from 2001-2018.
New Belts After Successful Defense
One of the most notable traditions with the Classic Golden UFC Belt, was that UFC champions would receive a brand new UFC belt after every successful title defense.
This would allow fighters to accumulate many UFC belts throughout their careers, most notable Demetrious Johnson.
Johnson would clean out the entire UFC Flyweight division, and capture one of the coolest pictures with all of his accumulated belts.
GOLD!!! pic.twitter.com/0HZxMXrsTr— Demetrious Johnson (@MightyMouse) May 10, 2017
3. UFC Legacy Belt
The UFC Legacy belt is what is now currently being used for Undisputed UFC champions of all weight divisions.
This belt was introduced after the UFC's 25th anniversary, and was first awarded at the UFC Fight Night: Cejudo vs Dillashaw event.
Henry Cejudo would defeat TJ Dillashaw via TKO, win the UFC Flyweight championship, and be the first recipient of the UFC Legacy Belt.
How is the Belt Different Than the Old One?
The UFC Legacy Belt is much more complex than the older belt, as it has many features that are only visible up close.
Some of the coolest features include the Center plate, stones and rubies.
Features 8 country icons surrounding the center lettering that states 'World UFC Champion'.
These countries represents the first eight countries of the fighters that became UFC champions.
There are 25 stones that reference back to the UFC's 25th anniversary.
When a UFC champion successfully defends their UFC championship, they'll be able to add a ruby to their belt.
A title defense is one of the most impressive and hardest accomplishments in Mixed Martial arts.
Each ruby signifies a successful title defense.
Each defense of the belt in the specified weight class earns an additional ruby to be added to the athlete’s belt
4. Interim Championship Belt
A UFC Interim championship fight is created when the champion of that weight class is unable to defend the belt due for an extended amount of time due to injury, timing or even contract disputes.
Whoever wins this fight becomes the Interim champion, and becomes scheduled to fight the champion for the undisputed title.
The Interim Championship belt looks exactly like the belt the Undisputed champions wear.
This means that during the classic Gold UFC belt era, the interim champions also wore this exact same belt.
Additionally, when the UFC Legacy belt was introduced, fighters who won the interim championship after January 18th, 2019 would receive the UFC Legacy belt as well.
5. BMF Belt
The UFC Belt was introduced for UFC 244, when Nate Diaz would face-off against Jorge Masvidal.
These two fighters are some of the longest tenured fighters in the UFC, and their personalities of fighting anyone at any time, regardless of their chances of winning, is very rare in Mixed Martial Arts.
The UFC would do something they've never done before and create 'The Baddest Mother******' belt to honor both of these fighters.
This belt, unlike any of the other belts in UFC history, wouldn't declare a champion of any weight class.
It was simply made for this one-time event.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can a UFC Fighter Win More Than One Belt?
UFC fighters are able to win more than one belt. In fact, there have been a few UFC Double Champions including Conor McGregor, Amanda Nunes, Daniel Cormier and Henry Cejudo.