Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone, one of the most active and popular fighters of the past several decades, will be inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame this summer, the promotion announced Saturday during the UFC San Antonio broadcast.
Cerrone, 39, will join a prestigious class that includes former longtime UFC champions Anderson Silva and Jose Aldo and lighter-weight pioneer Jens Pulver. The Colorado native, who has lived and trained for years in New Mexico, will be inducted into the modern wing of the hall.
The induction ceremony will take place July 6 as part of International Fight Week in Las Vegas.
Cerrone never won a UFC title, but that hardly mattered to fans. “Cowboy” was an action fighter, racking up the most fight-night bonuses in UFC history (18, tied with Charles Oliveira). He somehow did it by being the most active fighter on the roster during his 11 years with the promotion. Cerrone is tied for the second-most wins in UFC history (23, Andrei Arlovski) and the second-most finishes in UFC history (16, Jim Miller). He has the third-most bouts ever in the promotion (38) and the most knockdowns (20).
If you go back to Cerrone’s days with the WEC, which was purchased by UFC parent company Zuffa, he spent 15 years fighting at the highest level of mixed martial arts. The longtime lightweight fighter owns wins over former UFC lightweight champions Charles Oliveira, Benson Henderson and Eddie Alvarez, plus victories against Edson Barboza and Matt Brown. “Cowboy” graced the cage with the likes of Conor McGregor, Jorge Masvidal, Robbie Lawler and Justin Gaethje, some of the most fearsome knockout artists in the sport.
“Cowboy Cerrone is one of the best lightweights in UFC history,” UFC president Dana White said in a statement. “Cowboy consistently fought the best of the best for over a decade inside the Octagon and set a ton of records in the process. He was also a complete savage who would fight anyone at any time. He is a true legend, and it will be an honor to induct him into the UFC Hall of Fame as part of International Fight Week.”