Thanks to the miracle of Google Groups I dug up this old post to Rec.martial-arts that I made back in 1996.
Obviously there have been plenty of better fights since but this is just too fun. I didn't even correct the misspellings.
Apr 13 1996, 3:00 am
Subject: My Top 10 No-Rules Fights
Find messages by this author I selected these based on the drama of the match, each fighter could've won--so I'll do another post on "Most Savage Beatings"
1. Royce Gracie vs Ken Shamrock I (UFC 1)
The most beautiful, fluid, fast-moving skill match I've ever seen. Shamrock wasn't familiar w/ BJJ yet so he took some chances--and lost. Put up a hell of a fight though.
2. Royce Gracie vs Kimo (UFC 3)
Kimo pushed Royce to the limit, reversed a mount and came very close to winning, definitely hurt Royce more than anyone else ever has, but Royce's skill & heart (& Kimo's ponytail) put him on top.
3. Royce Gracie vs Dan Severn (UFC 4)
Severn was the 3rd of Royce's Great Challenges and lasted much longer than the other two. It looked like Royce didn't have a chance, but if you watch the fight a few times, he was in control much of the way, and finally snuck up on Dan with a triangle choke.
4.Oleg Taktarov vs Tank Abbott (UFC 6)
Power vs Skill, Bullyboy vs Bravery..this match has it all and Tank's actually a fairly skilled wrestler if you watch closely. I love it when Oleg finally sinks in the choke.
5. Igor Zinoviev vs Mario Sperry (Battlecade 1)
Sperry dominates this match, but just can't keep "Houdini" Zinoviev down, and eventually makes a fatal error.
6. Jerry Bohlander vs Scott Ferrozzo (UFC 8)
These guys don't get much credit since neither made the finals, but they are both top-notch, Bohlander's skill and striking stop the irresistable force of Ferrozzo. Awesome
7. Bart Vale vs Mike Bitionio (WCC)
Bitonio's heart and Vale's brutal inability to put him away made this the highlight of the world combat championship. Sure Renzo's better but his fights were too one-sided to be really great.
8. Don Frye vs Gary Goodridge (UFC 8)
Both fighters made sloppy mistakes, but they both went all out and either one could've won. Frye's mean right hand and Goodbridge's mistakes made the difference.
9. Royce Gracie vs Keith Hackney (UFC 4)
Hackney made his reputation by refusing to go down easy against Royce, even landing some hard punches, but Royce knows more than one way to skin a cat...
Marco Ruas vs Paul Varelens (UFC 7)
Varelens never really had a chance, but it took a while for Ruas to chop him down to size in a classic David/Goliath battle.
Kimo vs Pat Smith (Single Match, Japan Spring 95)
Kimo proved he's for real by pounding the respected Pat Smith. Pat put up a ruckus, but just doesn't have the skill to beat Kimo.