List of All UFC Light Heavyweight Champions & Title History

UFC Light Heavyweight Championship & Champion Poster

UFC Light Heavyweight Championship is the title for the UFC men’s division which ranges from 185 pounds to 205 pounds or from 83.9 kgs to 93 kgs. We will cover the complete list of UFC Light Heavyweight Champions, current Light Heavyweight Champion, and title history in this article.

Title History

A 205 lbs title was introduced as the Middleweight title in UFC at the UFC Japan event on December 21, 1997. Frank Shamrock defeated Kevin Jackson via armbar submission in 22 seconds to become the inaugural champion. After four successful defenses, Shamrock vacated the title citing a lack of competition. Tito Ortiz defeated Wanderlei Silva at UFC 25 on April 14, 2000, via unanimous decision.

The title was renamed to Light Heavyweight Championship at UFC 31 on May 4, 2001. Ortiz was on a layoff for a year after defeating Ken Shamrock at UFC 40. Randy Couture defeated Chuck Liddle for an interim title at UFC 43 in 2003. Couture defeated Ortiz to unify the title at UFC 44 later that year. Vitor Belfort defeated Couture in his first defense at UFC 46. Couture won the title back after beating Belfort in their rematch at UFC 49.

Chuck Liddell defeated Couture in a rematch at UFC 52 to win the Lightweight title. Liddell defeated Couture in their trilogy bout in his second title defense. Liddell also defeated Tito Ortiz in his fourth title defense in December 2006. Quinton Jackson dethroned Liddell at UFC 71. The title then moved from Forrest Griffin, Rashad Evans, Lyoto Machida and Maurício Rua between 2007 to 2011.

Jon Jones defeated Maurício Rua at UFC 128 to start his title reign on March 19, 2011. He defeated former champions Quinton Jackson, Rashad Evans, and Vitor Belfort in his 1,501 days long first title reign, which is the longest reign for the light heavyweight title. He was stripped of the title on April 28, 2015, due to his involvement and arrest in a felony hit-and-run.

Daniel Cormier won the vacant title by defeating Anthony Johnson at UFC 187. Cormier was supposed to defend the title against Jones at UFC 197. But Cormier pulled out due to a foot injury. Jones defeated Ovince Saint Preux to become the interim champion. A title unification bout was scheduled for UFC 200, but UFC pulled out Jones due to a failed drug test and stripped him off the interim title.

Jones defeated Cormier at UFC 214 via knockout. However, Jones was tested positive for steroid Oral Turinabol. UFC once again stripped of the title and Cormier was reinstated as the champion. After another successful defense against Volkan Oezdemir, Cormier vacated the title on December 28, 2018, after winning UFC Heavyweight Championship.

Jon Jones defeated Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 232 to win the title for the second time. He defended it successfully three times before vacating on August 17, 2020, as he looked to jump up to the heavyweight division. Jan Blachowicz defeated Dominik Reyes to win the vacant title at UFC 253. Blachowicz defeated reigning UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya in his first defense at UFC 259. Glover Teixeira defeated Blachowicz at UFC 267 to become the oldest Light Heavyweight Champion. Jiří Procházka dethroned Teixeira in his first defense at UFC 275.

Procházka injured his shoulder before a rematch against Teixeira at UFC 282. UFC then booked a fight between Jan Blachowizc and Magomed Ankalaev for the vacant title at UFC 282 which ended in a split draw at 47-48, 48-47 and 47-47. UFC then announced that new fight between Glover Teixeira and Jamahal Hill at UFC 283 for the title. Hill defeated Teixeira at UFC 283 via a unanimous decision.

Current Champion

Alex Pereira UFC
Credits: UFC

Alex Pereira defeated Jiri Prochazka at UFC 295 to win the vacant UFC Light Heavyweight Championship. Jamahal Hill relinquished it on July 13, 2023, due to an injury.

List of All Champions

Alex Pereira UFC

19. Alex Pereira

  • Title Won Date: November 11, 2023
  • Defenses: 0
  • Reigns Day: 16+ Days
  • Event: UFC 295
  • Notes: defeated Jiri Prochazka at UFC 284 to win the vacant title.
Jamahal Hill Light heavyweight Champions

18. Jamahal Hill

  • Title Won Date: January 21, 2023
  • Defenses: 0
  • Reigns Day: 173 Days
  • Event: UFC 283
  • Notes: defeated Glover Teixeira at UFC 283 to win the vacant title. Relinquished title on July 13, 2023 due to ruptured Achilles.
Jiri Prochazka UFC Light Heavyweight Champion 2

17. Jiří Procházka

  • Title Won Date: June 12, 2022
  • Defenses: 0
  • Reigns Day: 167 Days
  • Event: UFC 275
  • Notes: defeated Glover Teixeira to win the title. Vacated the title on November 23, 2022, due to a shoulder injury.
glover teixeira Champion 2021

16. Glover Teixeira

  • Title Won Date: October 30, 2021
  • Defenses: 1
  • Reigns Day: 225 Day
  • Event: UFC 267
  • Notes: defeated Jan Blachowicz to win the title
jan blachowicz UFC Light Heavyweight Champions

15. Jan Błachowicz

  • Title Won Date: Sep 27, 2020
  • Defenses: 1
  • Reigns Day: 398 Day
  • Event: UFC 253
  • Notes: defeated Dominik Reyes to win the vacant title

14. Jon Jones

  • Title Won Date: Dec 29, 2018
  • Defenses: 3
  • Reigns Day: 597 Day
  • Event: UFC 232
  • Notes: defeated Alexander Gustafsson to win the vacant title, relinquished the title after a pay dispute with UFC and wanting to move to heavyweight.

Interim. Jon Jones

  • Title Won Date: 23 April 2016
  • Defenses:
  • Reigns Day:
  • Event: UFC 197
  • Notes: won interim title by defeating Ovince Saint Preux

13. Daniel Cormier

  • Title Won Date: May 23, 2015
  • Defenses: 3
  • Reigns Day: 1315 Day
  • Event: UFC 187
  • Notes: defeated Anthony Johnson to win the vacant title. Cormier was defeated by Jon Jones at 214, but Jones failed another drug test and the result was changed to no-contest, leading to Cormier being reinstated as the champion again. Cormier vacated the title after winning Heavyweight Championship

12. Jon Jones

  • Title Won Date: Mar 19, 2011
  • Defenses: 8
  • Reigns Day: 1,501 Day
  • Event: UFC 128
  • Notes: defeated Maurício Rua to win the title, the longest reigning champion in the division, was stripped of the title due to his arrest in a hit-and-run case.

11. Maurício Rua

  • Title Won Date: May 8, 2010
  • Defenses: 0
  • Reigns Day: 315 Day
  • Event: UFC 113
  • Notes: beat Lyoto Machida to win the title

10. Lyoto Machida

  • Title Won Date: May 23, 2009
  • Defenses: 1
  • Reigns Day: 350 Day
  • Event: UFC 98
  • Notes: defeated Rashad Evans to win the title

9. Rashad Evans

  • Title Won Date: Dec 27, 2008
  • Defenses: 0
  • Reigns Day: 147 Day
  • Event: UFC 92
  • Notes: won the title from Forrest Griffin

8. Forrest Griffin

  • Title Won Date: Jul 5, 2008
  • Defenses: 0
  • Reigns Day: 175 days
  • Event: UFC 86
  • Notes: won the title from Quinton Jackson

7. Quinton Jackson

  • Title Won Date: May 26, 2007
  • Defenses: 1
  • Reigns Day: 406 days
  • Event: UFC 71
  • Notes: defeated Chuck Liddell to win the title

6. Chuck Liddell

  • Title Won Date: Apr 16, 2005
  • Defenses: 4
  • Reigns Day: 770 days
  • Event: UFC 52
  • Notes: defeated Randy Couture to win the title

5. Randy Couture

  • Title Won Date: April 21, 2004
  • Defenses: 0
  • Reigns Day: 238 days
  • Event: UFC 49
  • Notes: defeated Vitor Belfort in their rematch to win title

4. Vitor Belfort

  • Title Won Date: Jan 31, 2004
  • Defenses: 0
  • Reigns Day: 203 days
  • Event: UFC 46
  • Notes: defeated Randy Couture to win title

3. Randy Couture

  • Title Won Date: Sep 26, 2003
  • Defenses: 0
  • Reigns Day: 127 days
  • Event: UFC 44
  • Notes: defeated Tito Ortiz to unify the titles.

Interim. Randy Couture

  • Title Won Date: Jun 6, 2003
  • Defenses:
  • Reigns Day:
  • Event: UFC 43
  • Notes: won interim title by beating Chuck Liddle

2. Tito Ortiz

  • Title Won Date: Apr 14, 2000
  • Defenses: 5
  • Reigns Day: 1,260 days
  • Event: UFC 25
  • Notes: defeated Wanderlei Silva to win the vacant title, title renamed to Light Heavyweight title in the middle of the reign

1. Frank Shamork

  • Title Won Date: Dec 21, 1997
  • Defenses: 4
  • Days Held: 703 days
  • Event: UFC Japan
  • Notes: defeated Kevin Jackson to become an inaugural champion when the title was named as middleweight title, relinquished title citing lack of competition after fourth defense

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *