Tony “El Cucuy” Ferguson is a former UFC Interim Lightweight Champion with a 25-8 professional MMA record.
Tony Ferguson (Image via;: Twitter)

Anthony Armand Ferguson Padilla aka Tony Ferguson was born on February 12, 1984. He is a professional MMA fighter from the United States. He now fights in the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s Lightweight category (UFC). He was once the Interim UFC Lightweight Champion. Ferguson made his MMA debut in 2008 and has been with the UFC since winning The Ultimate Fighter 13 in 2011. He has had training in freestyle wrestling, boxing, jiu-jitsu, Muay Thai, and Wing Chun.

NameTony Ferguson
D.O.BFebruary 12, 1984
Height5 ft 11 in (180 cm)
Weight77 kg
OccupationMixed Martial Artist
Professional Debut2008
WifeCristina Servin
NicknamesEl Cucuy


Ferguson was born in Oxnard, California, but spent much of his childhood in Muskegon, Michigan. He is of Mexican descent. Ferguson is his Scottish-American stepfather’s surname. Ferguson participated in three sports at Muskegon Catholic Central High School: American football, baseball, and wrestling. He started defensive back for the Class 8 state football winners in 2000 and was a three-time All-State wrestler, winning the 152-pound division in 2002.

Ferguson attended Central Michigan University after high school before transferring to Grand Valley State University. He also attended Muskegon Community College. He did not finish his degree, but he did have a great collegiate wrestling career, earning the National Collegiate Wrestling Association national wrestling title in the 165-pound class in 2006.

Ferguson returned to California after graduation to be closer to his extended family, working in marketing and sales during the day and bartending at night. A client saw Ferguson’s cauliflower ear while working a bar shift one night and began a conversation about his wrestling past. The patron worked as a trainer at a local MMA gym and was invited to help some young MMA fighters with their wrestling. He soon chose to pursue a professional mixed martial arts (MMA) career.

Early Career

Ferguson began his professional MMA career in 2007 by competing in local organizations across California. In his early career, he defeated kickboxing champion Joe Schilling and lost to future World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) fighter Karen Darabedyan.

Ferguson applied numerous times to compete in the UFC’s reality show The Ultimate Fighter. After collecting a 10-2 professional record and winning the welterweight title in PureCombat, he was ultimately invited to fight in season 13 of the series in 2010. On The Ultimate Fighter: Team Lesnar vs. Team dos Santos, he participated as a welterweight.

Ferguson was chosen as Team Lesnar’s third choice. Ferguson knocked out Justin Edwards in the first round of his debut. In the quarterfinals, he fought Ryan McGillivray and won by TKO in the first round. In the semifinals, he faced Chuck O’Neil and won by TKO in the third round to progress to the final.

UFC Career

Tony won The Ultimate Fighter and a UFC contract after knocking out Ramsey Nijem in the opening round of the finals. Ferguson won his UFC debut against Aaron Riley by TKO (jaw injury) at UFC 135. He went on to defeat Yves Edwards before falling to Michael Jonson at UFC on Fox 3.

Ferguson would embark on a 12-fight winning streak after this defeat. He defeated Edson Barboza, Rafael dos Anjos, Anthony Pettis, and Donald Cerrone before winning the UFC Lightweight Championship against Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 249. However, Khabib withdrew from the fight, and Ferguson instead faced Gaethje for the UFC Interim Lightweight Championship.

Ferguson was knocked out in the fifth round by Gaethje (punch). Following the fight, he fell decisively to Charles Oliveira and Beneil Dariush, and he is presently on a 5-bout losing run, including a loss to Nate Diaz in his most recent fight.

Championships and Accomplishments

Amateur wrestling

  • National Collegiate Wrestling Association
    NCWA National Champion (2006)
    NCWA All-American (2006, 2007)
    North Central Conference Champion (2006, 2007)
    Michigan High School Athletic Association
    MHSAA Division IV State Champion (2002)
    MHSAA Division IV All-State (2000-2002)

Mixed martial arts

  • Ultimate Fighting Championship
    Interim UFC Lightweight Championship (One time)
    The Ultimate Fighter 13 winner
    Fight of the Night (Six times) vs. Edson Barboza, Lando Vannata, Rafael dos Anjos, Anthony Pettis, Donald Cerrone, and Justin Gaethje
    Knockout of the Night (One time) vs. Ramsey Nijem
    Submission of the Night (One time) vs. Mike Rio
    Performance of the Night (Three times) vs. Edson Barboza, Josh Thomson, and Gleison Tibau
    Most consecutive wins in UFC Lightweight Division (12) (w. Khabib Nurmagomedov)
  • PureCombat
    PureCombat Welterweight Championship (One time)
  • World MMA Awards
    2018 Fight of the Year vs. Anthony Pettis at UFC 229

MMA Records

33 matches 25 wins 8 losses
By knockout 12 2
By submission 8 2
By decision 5 4

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