Born July 7, 1991, in Uhrichsville, Ohio, (USA), Cody Ray Allen Garbrandt is a former Bantamweight UFC Champion – becoming so after defeating Dominick Cruz at UFC 207 which also earned him the coveted “Performance of the Night” bonus.
Nicknamed “No Love”, and perhaps unknown to many casual fans before his fight with Cruz, is that he had a quick surge through the division.
Many doubted his worthiness of a title shot and others dismissed the idea of him touching the great Dominick Cruz. Doubters aside, Garbrandt put on a performance far above the level he had previously produced, coming into the fight with a 90% knockout rate. “No Love” demonstrated a lot more than knockout power and was able to outclass Cruz through five rounds earning a unanimous decision victory.
This win enabled Cody to keep his promise of capturing UFC gold to a young (11 year-old) leukaemia survivor, Maddux Maple, who has known Garbrandt since the age of 5, and has been with him throughout his journey.
However, since winning the belt, Cody endured three fight losses yet was able to redeem himself with an impressive win against Raphael Assunção at UFC 250. Now you’ve got a bit of the back story on the eclectic-electric fighter, let’s get into the hotlist of his most electrifying finales in Cody Garbrandt: Top 5 MMA Finishes! (in descending order)
- Vs. Shane Manley – Pinnacle FC: PCS5 (Nov. 27, 2013)
- Vs. Dominic Mazzotta – Gladiators of the Cage 4 (March 15, 2014)
- Vs. Thomas Almeida – UFC Fight Night 88 (May 29, 2016)
- Vs. Takeya Mizugaki – UFC 202 (Aug. 20, 2016)
- Vs. Raphael Assunção – UFC 250 (June 6, 2020)
This fight marks Garbrandt’s second professional fight against Shane Manley after winning his debut via first round knockout.
The fight begins with both fighters exchanging leg kicks, with Manley shooting for a takedown which he completes, but Garbrandt threatens with a guillotine from his back and is able to use the submission attempt to help get back to his feet.
Manley throws a misguided head kick and slips allowing “No Love” to control him in full guard and is able to land some tough blows prior to passing to half guard. However, as Manley tries to stand up, Garbrandt throws a knee at his head (the official deemed it to be a grounded opponent) resulting in a warning for Garbrandt.
Despite, the warning this did not impact the rest of Cody’s performance and immediately after, Manley threw a right hand which was countered by Cody’s own trademark, ducking-overhand right, knocking out Manley in devastating fashion.
Cody displayed a variety of skills in this match up, with excellent takedown defence and offence, a diverse leg attack and, as always, demonstrating his almost unbelievable power for which he’s notorious.
Going into the fight, Cody was 2-0 with a 100% knockout rate and looked to build on his record against Dominic Mazzota.
The first round starts with Cody pressuring the fight and pinning Mazzota to the cage and from there, is able to take Mazzota down and land in side control; however, Mazzotta is able to successfully use an underhook to get back to his feet.
As the fight progresses, Garbrandt throws an overhand right, but is countered by a Mazzota left hook and followed up by an overhand right that stumbles Garbrandt. Despite Mazzota’s success “No Love” manages to secure a trip against the cage and is able to work from half guard. Mazzota gets to his feet, and the round ends with both fighters throwing failed head kick attempts.
Both fighters start the second round with furious pace as Mazzota throws a superman punch to close the distance, followed by a leg kick, and Garbrandt narrowly misses with an overhand right counter. Then, Cody throws a leg kick of his own which lands, with Mazzota trying to return the favour. Cody this time connects with his overhand right, knocking Mazotta down and finishes the fight with a few more punches to seal the deal.
The fight highlighted many of Garbrandt’s strengths which have continued to show throughout his career, for example, effective leg kicks, elite-level boxing skills combined with concussive knockout power – allowing him to secure this knockout win.
Garbrandt headlined UFC Fight Night 88 taking on Thomas Almeida who held a very impressive 21-0 record prior to this bout.
After a relatively slow first minute, the action opens up as Garbrandt throws a flying knee attempt which misses, but “No Love” connects with a right hand as he exits the pocket getting Almeida’s attention.
As the action continues, Cody lunges in with an overhand right which misses the target, however, he connects with two left hooks instead that stagger Almeida back to the cage, however he seemed to recover slightly after being rocked by the hooks.
Later, in the first round, both fighters throw – Almeida connecting with a left hook of his own, but missing a head kick attempt. Cody fires a jab only to line up a big right hand that knocks Almeida down, and as Garbrandt begins to throw the final concussing blows, ‘Big John’ McCarthy steps in and stops the action.
Garbrandt won the “Performance of the Night” along with the bonus of $50,000 for his impressive knockout of Almeida, here ending his 21-0 unbeaten streak.
Ranked number 8 at the time, “No Love” fought Takeya Mizugaki in his tenth professional fight at UFC 202. After a perfect 9-0 start to his career “No Love” looked to continue extending his streak.
The fight started with Cody opening up with a kick to the lead thigh of Mizugaki, then the fighters engaged in two short exchanges with both landing punches. With both fighters landing, Garbrandt pressures Mizugaki up to the fence, and using his jab as a guide, unleashes a straight right that floors Mizugaki.
Cody jumps at the opportunity and lands a short right hook whilst Takeya tries to find his feet, leading him to fall to his back. Garbrandt finishes the fight with a flurry of punches as referee John McCarthy stops the fight in under 50 seconds.
The dominant performance earned Garbrandt a shot at the then-champion Dominick Cruz, of which many believed to be a too-early title fight for the underdog. However, “No Love” put on an superb championship performance against Cruz, winning by unanimous decision over five rounds which involved dropping and cutting Cruz throughout the fight.
After three consecutive losses, the former bantamweight champion sought to get back on track in the co-main event at UFC 250, against Raphael Assunção.
Garbrandt came out looking formidable, reminiscent of the Cruz performance, after the addition of boxing coach Mark Henry to his corner. Cody began the fight with a variety of leg kicks targeting the lead calf of Assunção, causing Raphael to change stance several times.
The low calf kicks from the previous round definitely showed their impact with these continuous stance changes which, overall, only appeared to inhibit his movement.
With just over a minute in the second round left, Garbrandt connects with an overhand right on the temple of Assunção briefly knocking him down. Assunção momentarily loses control of his legs as he begins to stand up but he’s able to recover.
However, with a few seconds left “No Love” switches up a gear and pulls out a stunningly-surgical, ducking right hook just before the buzzer sounds. This catches Assunção clean on the jaw, as Cody walks away with the knockout just a second before the end of the round.
After the clinical punch landed, it literally left a bewildered Assunção face down, and stiff on the canvas. As he regained consciousness, the visible effects were seen as a trembling Raphael struggles to stay upright on his stool.
This knockout victory earned Cody the “Performance of the Night” bonus along with $50,000 and was hailed as one of the Top 5 Knockouts of 2020.