Every UFC fighter has to work their way up in the rankings to get a title shot. However, some MMA athletes got a title shot right off the bat due to having a great MMA career in other MMA promotions. Here, we take a look at 5 MMA fighters who got a title shot in their UFC debut.
Former Strikeforce women's bantamweight champion, Ronda Rousey, was made the inaugural UFC women's bantamweight champion by the UFC. In her UFC debut, Rousey defended her title against Liz Carmouche via first-round submission (armbar) at UFC 157.
Former WEC featherweight champion, Jose Aldo, was crowned the UFC featherweight champion before he even fought in the UFC. In his UFC debut, Aldo defended his title against Mark Hominick via unanimous decision at UFC 129.
Dominick Cruz was the WEC bantamweight champion. As the WEC merged with the UFC, Cruz was named as the inaugural UFC Bantamweight Champion. In his UFC debut, Cruz defended his title against Urijah Faber at UFC 132.
Yana Kunitskaya was the Invicta FC Bantamweight Champion. In her UFC debut, Kunitskaya clashed against Cris Cyborg for the UFC Women's Featherweight Championship title at UFC 222. She lost the bout via TKO in the first round.
Gilbert Melendez was the Strikeforce Lightweight Champion. He got a title shot in his UFC debut against Benson Henderson for the UFC lightweight title, where he lost the bout via a split decision.