Jon Fitch was able to compete over three different decades with his MMA debut taking place in 2002. The 42-year-old AKA product took off his gloves in the cage after tasting defeat to Neiman Gracie. Notable Jon Fitch career moments are bountiful.
In a mixed-martial-arts career that saw him amass a record of 32-8-2 with one no contest, there were a lot of great moments Fitch was a part of. A pugilist that has been a contender for welterweight championships in the UFC, WSOF (now PFL), and Bellator MMA.
In lieu of his retirement at Bellator 246, I take a look back at the top career moments of Jon Fitch.
Jon Fitch Career Moments
Fitch vs Thiago Alves I
Of the seven (T)KO victories throughout Fitch’s career, this was the one I thought was most impressive. Most of Fitch’s striking stoppages are from ground and pound punches and superior positioning that slowly chips away at his adversaries. This outing saw Fitch launch a beautiful up kick at Pitbull that separated him from consciousness. It would also mark the final striking-based stoppage of his career. What a finish and especially when you consider it was over a former UFC welterweight title challenger in Thiago Alves.
Fitch vs Diego Sanchez
As a fan watching avidly at this time, I felt like this was the victory that put Fitch on the map as a possible next UFC title challenger. Sanchez, despite coming off of a loss to Josh Koscheck, was still regarded as one of the top 170 pounders in the world.
Diego Sanchez’s explosive grappling style was largely stifled in that fight by Fitch’s smothering top control. The September 2007 split decision win over Nightmare did a lot to vault Fitch towards his August 2008 title bid against GSP.
Fitch vs Erick Silva
This might be the most exciting fight on Jon Fitch’s career. This bout got fight of the night honors which was the second of two times Fitch got that honor during his UFC run. It became one of the more well-regarded fights of 2012 and that October outing saw Fitch secure the unanimous decision win.
The explosive Erick Silva had his flame snuffed out as Fitch imposed his will, interspersing ground and pound as well as submission attempts. It was a great back and forth outing; one that is a must see for anyone having a Jon Fitch fight-watch retirement retrospective.
Fitch vs Jake Shields
The WSOF 34 clash between these two stalwart welterweight top contenders was a fight that almost marked Fitch’s retirement from the sport. This outing saw Fitch defend his WSOF welterweight title for the first time. It was an impressive, thorough victory over one of the all-time great welterweights. A fight where Fitch beat Shields at his own game and edged him out in the grappling sequences.
He backed off from this post-fight retirement talk though. Fitch would defend the belt a second time via bulldog choke against Brian Foster. Then he defected to Bellator MMA shortly thereafter.
Fitch vs Rory MacDonald
Despite this fight being a draw I think this bout still represents a notable career moment for Fitch. This fight was Jon Fitch’s lone bid for the Bellator MMA welterweight championship. A certain segment of the MMA fanbase thought that Fitch had done enough to dethrone Rory MacDonald and claim his Bellator welterweight crown.
It was a fight that resulted in MacDonald advancing in the tournament. But Fitch didn’t lose out on a great deal here. In fact, it really affirmed that Jon Fitch can hang with anyone in the world at welterweight on a good night.
- Fitch vs Thiago Alves II
- Jon Fitch vs Jeff Joslin
- Fitch vs Shonie Carter
- Jon Fitch vs Yushin Okami
- Fitch vs Paul Daley
- Jon Fitch vs Georges St Pierre (UFC welterweight title fight/ first-ever fight of the night distinction)