Editor's note: Insider presents MMA10, a weekly top-10 poll of MMA fighters, trainers and coaches on a variety of topics. This week: Top 10 greatest MMA champions.
Only the most elite fighters ever reach the pinnacle of the sport and earn a world title, but there is still another level above that impressive list reserved for those who not only earn the belt, but find a way to hold on that prize despite the target on their back.
With that in mind, we asked our pollsters to rank the top champions of all-time. Of course, the list looks very much like a list of the best fighters ever. With these rankings, however, we tried to take a look at who had the most impressive reigns as champion.
Here's our ranking of the top 10 best champions in mixed martial arts.
1. Anderson Silva | UFC middleweight champion
A familiar name tops yet another of our polls. It would be fair to criticize the level of competition that has challenged Silva throughout his incredible reign at the top of the UFC's 185-pound class, but there is no debating just how dominant of a champion the Brazilian has been for more than six years. He has a UFC-record 10 straight title defenses and is 11-0 in UFC title fights, including finishes in nine of those contests.