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Jon Jones looks on during the UFC heavyweight championship fight against Ciryl Gane of France during the UFC 285 event at T-Mobile Arena on March 04, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Athletes

From The Fans: Data From The UFC’s Matchmaker Sweepstakes

Find Out Which Fighters And Fights The Fans Selected Most During UFC’s Matchmaker Sweepstakes This Summer.

Earlier this year the UFC put out a sweepstakes that allowed fans to put together their very own dream fight card.

The winner of the sweepstakes will receive an incredible grand prize that includes:

  • Flight to Las Vegas + Hotel
  • An opportunity to meet Dana White in his matchmaker war room
  • The chance to attend a matchmaker meeting and meet our other matchmakers
  • An eExclusive UFC Headquarters & UFC Performance Institute Tour
  • (2) VIP Tickets to UFC 295: Jones vs Miocic anniversary event, Flights + Hotel
  • Access to UFC Strike Champions Club Lounge at UFC 295: Jones vs Miocic anniversary event
As part of our 30th Anniversary, the UFC’s Matchmaker Sweepstakes will encourage all matchmakers to submit their dream UFC fight card for a chance to win an exclusive trip to Las Vegas and become a UFC Matchmaker For A Day.

More than a hundred thousand fans played matchmaker, building their ultimate fight cards. UFC has compiled the data from those sweepstakes entries to show s which athletes were most selected on fight cards and which dream fights were chosen the most.

Here were the top 10 athletes selected by fans during the sweepstakes:

  1. Jon Jones
     
  2. Khamzat Chimaev
     
  3. Israel Adesanya
     
  4. Islam Makhachev
     
  5. Sergei Pavlovich
     
  6. Ilia Topuria
     
  7. Colby Covington
     
  8. Leon Edwards
     
  9. Conor McGregor
     
  10. Charles Oliveira
Leon Edwards of Jamaica reacts after defeating Kamaru Usman of Nigeria in the UFC welterweight championship fight during the UFC 278 event at Vivint Arena on August 20, 2022 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)
Leon Edwards of Jamaica reacts after defeating Kamaru Usman of Nigeria in the UFC welterweight championship fight during the UFC 278 event at Vivint Arena on August 20, 2022 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

It’s not surprising to see that fans were excited to start matching up Jon Jones with heavyweight contenders and former heavyweight champions. One of those contenders is Sergei Pavlovich, who also found himself on the top ten list.

The last time fans saw Jones prior to his heavyweight title victory over Ciryl Gane in March was back in February of 2020, when he defended his light heavyweight title, so it’s natural that fans want to see the fighter many consider the “G.O.A.T.” back in the Octagon.

The same goes for Khamzat Chimaev, who has competed at both welterweight and middleweight since bursting onto the scene. Chimaev hasn’t fought since UFC 279 in September of 2022, and it’s clear that fans want to see “Borz” back in action. They won’t have to wait much longer, as Chimaev is scheduled to face Paulo Costa at UFC 294 in Abu Dhabi on October 21.

Khamzat Chimaev Talks About Fighting At UFC 294
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Khamzat Chimaev Talks About Fighting At UFC 294
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One interesting note is that former interim UFC welterweight champion Colby Covington and current welterweight champion Leon Edwards were two of the most frequently used athletes in the sweepstakes. Well, the fans must know their stuff, as Dana White announced that the two fighters will finally fight and headline UFC 296 in December.

On that same wave, lightweight champion Islam Makhachev is set to rematch Charles Oliveria in the same arena that he defeated Oliveira at in 2022. That championship rematch headlines UFC 294.

In summary, six of the ten most selected athletes have fights booked – meaning that fans are going to see some of their favorites in action sooner rather than later.

 Opponents Charles Oliveira of Brazil and Islam Makhachev of Russia face off prior to their UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 280 event at Etihad Arena on October 22, 2022 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)
Opponents Charles Oliveira of Brazil and Islam Makhachev of Russia face off prior to their UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 280 event at Etihad Arena on October 22, 2022 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.(Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

Speaking of fights, based off more than 858 fight combinations, these were the top 10 fights fans want to see:

  1. Israel Adesanya vs Dricus Du Plessis
     
  2. Jon Jones vs Sergei Pavlovich
     
  3. Alexander Volkanovski vs Ilia Topuria
     
  4. Leon Edwards vs Colby Covington
     
  5. Islam Makhachev vs Charles Oliveira
     
  6. Jon Jones vs Stipe Miocic
     
  7. Alex Pereira vs Jiri Prochazka
     
  8. Khamzat Chimaev vs Kamaru Usman
     
  9. Alexandre Pantoja vs Brandon Moreno 3
     
  10. Conor McGregor vs Michael Chandler

Fans have to be excited about what the UFC has cooking on their schedule, considering the fact that four of their ten dream fights are already booked and announced for 2023.

Edwards is set to face Covington on December 16 in Las Vegas, Makhachev and Oliveira run it back on October 21, Jon Jones vs Stipe Miocic headlines UFC 295, which is UFC’s 30th Anniversary show at Madison Square Garden in New York City on November 11, and Jiri Prochazka and Alex Pereira will fight for the vacant UFC light heavyweight title in the UFC 295 co-main event.

View The Complete UFC Events Schedule

The other six dream fights that fans want to see are all very plausible and could happen in the near future.

Stay tuned to find out who won the matchmakers sweepstakes and to see some of your dream fights happen!

UFC 294: Makhachev vs Volkanovski 2 took place live from Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi, UAE on October 21, 2023. See the Final Results, Official Scorecards and Who Won Bonuses - and relive the action on UFC Fight Pass!