In MMA we all love a good prospect. We like to know of those who will have a future in the sport for years to come. As we know, Jon Jones won the title at just 21 years of age and last week, we saw 17-year-old Raul Rosas Jr get a contract on the contender series.
We take a brief look at 25 MMA stars under 25 in no particular order.
25 Under 25
1 – Muhammad Mokaev – Mokaev stormed onto the UFC scene with a first-round submission over Cody Durden in London in March. He then dominated Charles Johnson in July across three rounds. He’s scheduled to compete again at UFC 280 against the experienced Malcolm Gordon. With an extensive amateur background and well-rounded skills, Mokaev is a dangerous prospect at flyweight and bantamweight.
2 – Dakota Ditcheva – The PFL’s latest breakout star, Dakota Ditcheva has a huge future ahead of her. Sitting at 6-0 with five finishes, Ditcheva doesn’t hang around. As the first female to win a fight at flyweight for the PFL, she’s clearly being backed by the promotion that tells you everything you need to know about her potential.
3 – Maycee Barber – It feels as though we’ve been talking about Barber being a young prospect for years now, however, at just 24, she’s still a long way away from her peak. She holds a UFC record of 6-2 and certainly has a future in the upcoming years, as well as having a lot of time to improve.
4 – Edmen Shahbazyan – Say what you will about Edmen Shahbazyan but he still has a huge future ahead of him. Starting his UFC career 3-0, he’s on a three-fight skid. At just 24, however, he still has a huge career ahead of him. With names including Brad Tavares and Darren Stewart already on his record, he’s clearly talented.
5 – Song Yadong – Although Yadong is coming off a loss to Cory Sandhagen recently, he’s still only 24 and is extremely talented. With 11 UFC bouts already to his name, don’t be surprised to see him in the title picture in the coming years.
6 – Christian Lee – It’s crazy to think that Lee is still under 25, however, at 24 years of age, he’s already had 20 professional fights and held the ONE Championship lightweight title twice and competed for the featherweight championship at just 20. There’s no doubt that Lee could go down as a legend if he continues on his current rise.
7 – Casey O’Neill – Storming onto the UFC scene with four straight wins including three finishes, O’Neill is a prospect to keep an eye on. A torn ACL kept her out of a fight with Jessica Eye, however, she’s on the road to recovery and certainly has a future at both 125lbs and 135lbs.
8 – Ian Garry – The undefeated Garry is certainly talented. At 8-0, he’s openly admitted that he wants to be the next Conor McGregor but as of yet, hasn’t fully shown all the skills he has. After finishing his first UFC fight, he’s gone 15 minutes in his last two. He’s talented, entertaining and has a lot of potential for sure.
9 – Simeon Powell – PFL’s Simeon Powell may not be on everyone’s radar, however, be sure to get on the hype train early. The 23-year-old is 7-0 with six finishes and most recently made his second PFL appearance, ending things via low kicks in the second round. 6’5, 205lbs, Powell is going to be a problem for opponents in the future.
Simeon Powell #2022PFL1 pic.twitter.com/k370CBmybu
— Neo Vale Tudo (@NeoValeTudo) April 20, 2022
10 – Khasan Magomedsharipov – Recognise the name? The brother of Zabit Magomedsharipov, Khasan is 7-0 and just 21 years old. He’s notched five finishes in his seven fights, including two under the Bellator banner in recent times. With his age comes opportunities to not only dominate at 145lbs but also move up to 155lbs and put in work at lightweight too.
Rising flyweights head for a collision at Madison Square Garden, as Erin Blanchfield battles Molly McCann. 🗽#UFC281 | https://t.co/QY4NaEyQYQ pic.twitter.com/k1BKXamjpB
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Super Atomweight Champion Seika Izawa scores a buzzer-beater armbar at the end of round 2 to advance to the finals of the Super Atomweight Grand Prix❕
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