Who Has the Most Wins by Submission in the UFC?

Author Image Article By
Last Updated: 
Share On Your Network
Who Has the Most Wins by Submission in the UFC?
© PA

Since beginning in 1993, the UFC has seen some of the greatest mixed martial artists step foot in the octagon. From brutal knockouts by muay thai specialists to slick boxing combinations that force the stoppage, we've had some of the craziest finishes down the years. However, there is something a bit more beautiful within a submission ending.

When the UFC first started, Royce Gracie shocked the world by winning the tournaments at UFC 1, UFC 2 and UFC 4 with his astonishing Brazilian jiu-jitsu skill that helped him finish opponents way bigger than him. That made things interesting for those who were betting on the UFC.

Fast forward three decades, and there are black belts in this discipline across the roster, so we look back at who has the most submissions in the UFC.

Rank Fighter UFC Wins by Subsmission
1 Charles Oliveira* 16
2 Demian Maia 11
2 Jim Miller* 11
4 Royce Gracie 10
4 Nate Diaz 10
6 Gerarld Meerschaert* 9
7 Frank Mir 8
7 Gunnar Nelson 8

1. Charles Oliveira (16)


As the man with the most finishes in UFC history, the former lightweight champion, Charles Oliveira, is the king of getting the job done before the final bell.

Throughout his illustrious MMA career, Oliveira has secured 10 knockouts and 21 submissions in his 34 wins, with 20 of these finishes coming in a record-breaking run in the UFC. 

Oliveira has registered the second-most submission attempts in UFC history (40) and the most submissions in UFC history. Six of those came at featherweight, with the other 10 coming at lightweight, meaning Oliveira also has the most submission wins in the history of those two divisions.

As most of the Top 10 of the most submissions in the history list have retired while Oliveira remains active, it’s doubtful we’ll see this record get surpassed anytime soon.

He gets a big test in his next fight as he tries to add to his total, taking on Islam Makhachev, who comes in with a record of 34-1. Oliveira is a +285 underdog on the moneyline in that fight. 

2. Demian Maia (11)


As one of the best grapplers in MMA history, Demian Maia holds a 5th-degree black belt in BJJ and only B.J. Penn had the same rank as him during his days in the UFC.

Maia won various titles worldwide in jiu-jitsu before arriving on the MMA scene and ended his career with 14 submission wins in his total of 28 victories — 11 of those came in the UFC. 


⭐ UFC Predictions, BetMGM Bonus & UFC Best Bets - CLICK HERE! ⭐ 


Maia has also beaten another man on this list, Gunnar Nelson, via unanimous decision, and has beaten Ben Askren, Matt Brown, Neil Magny and Chael Sonnen via submission. 

Alongside having the second most submissions in UFC history, Maia has the second most submission wins in UFC welterweight history and four Submission of the Night awards.  

2. Jim Miller (11)


No man in UFC history has fought more times than Jim Miller (42 fights). Miller also has the second-most finishes in UFC history (17) and the most wins in the organization (25).

As a black belt in jiu-jitsu, Miller has managed to win 19 of his 36 victories via submission, with 11 of those coming in the UFC.

No doubt a future Hall of Fame inductee, Miller is still going strong and will no doubt be eyeing up the record of those above him in this list, since he's not looking to retire any time soon, it seems.

Miller also has the most submission attempts in UFC history with 47.

4. Royce Gracie (10)


If you’re familiar with the UFC and the importance of the Gracie family, you won’t be surprised to see Royce Gracie on this list. 

Gracie was the man who helped put the UFC on the map and is the first recognized jiu-jitsu specialist in the world of MMA. After submitting Art Jimmerson via a smother choke, Gracie earned the first-ever submission in UFC history at UFC 1 before getting another two in the same tournament against Ken Shamrock and Gerard Gordeau.


⭐ Sign Up with BetMGM and Place Your Best Bets for UFC Fights! ⭐ 


Gracie is a 7th-degree BJJ coral belt under Rickson Gracie and is, therefore, one of the highest-ranked practitioners in the world. He ended up winning 10 of his 11 UFC wins via submission to give him the highest submissions-per-win percentage in UFC history (90.91%).

In truth, Grace is arguably the best jiu-jitsu fighter in UFC history.

4. Nate Diaz (10)


A cult hero, Nate Diaz has secured 10 of his 16 wins in 27 UFC fights via submission, including a famous victory over Conor McGregor, the first loss for McGregor. Diaz was a huge sports betting underdog in that fight.

Diaz won his first three UFC fights via submission, and after defeating the former interim lightweight champion via guillotine choke, Tony Ferguson, the Stockton native retired in September, 2022 with the third most post-fight bonuses in UFC history and the third most submissions in lightweight history.

6. Gerald Meerschaert (9)


With a stunning record of 27 out of his 35 victories coming via submission, Gerald Meerschaert is one of the greatest submission specialists in MMA history.


⭐ UFC Predictions: Bet on Up Coming UFC Fights! ⭐ 


Meerschaert has the most submissions in middleweight history with nine and boasts of the second-most finishes at 185 (10). More impressively, Meerschaert has the second-highest submissions-per-win percentage in UFC history (nine submissions / 10 wins - 90%).

7. Frank Mir (8)


The legendary Frank Mir possessed the longest uninterrupted tenure of any fighter in UFC history after competing for the organization from 2001 to 2016 and racked up the most finishes in UFC heavyweight division history alongside Derrick Lewis (13).

Within this run, Mir recorded the only toe hold in UFC history, the fastest submission in UFC heavyweight history (45 seconds), and the most submissions in heavyweight history (8).

He also won Submission of the Night twice after forcing the tap from the legendary figures of Brock Lesnar and Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira.

8. Gunnar Nelson (8)


As a professional fighter since 2007, Gunnar Nelson earned his black belt in BJJ from Renzo Gracie two years later after impressive results at the 2009 IBJJF Pan-Ams and the 2009 ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championship.

Nelson has the most submission wins in UFC welterweight history (7), and he holds an impressive record of 10 wins from 15 UFC fights, with eight of them being by way of submission.

Nelson has just seven at his preferred weight of welterweight because DaMarques Johnson forced a catchweight bout of 175 after missing weight, only for the Icelandic to win via rear-naked choke.

Author Image Article By
Last Updated: 
Facebook Icon Twitter Icon Linkedin Icon Email Icon Copy Link Icon