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MMA Rankings for January 2011
by Scott Newman (MMA)
Posted on January 31, 2011, 3:51 AM

I don’t think there’s ever been a messier month in terms of rankings than January 2011. Seriously, we’ve got some odd results and some horrendous things to work through here. Sigh.

Heavyweight (206lbs and above):
Champion: Cain Velasquez - Last fight: W vs. Brock Lesnar – 10/23/10

1. Junior dos Santos - Last fight: W vs. Roy Nelson - 08/07/10
2. Brock Lesnar - Last fight: L vs. Cain Velasquez - 10/23/10
3. Fabricio Werdum - Last fight: W vs. Fedor Emelianenko – 06/26/10
4. Fedor Emelianenko - Last fight: L vs. Fabricio Werdum - 06/26/10
5. Shane Carwin - Last fight: L vs. Brock Lesnar – 07/03/10
6. Frank Mir - Last fight: W vs. Mirko Cro Cop - 09/25/10
7. Alistair Overeem - Last fight: W vs. Todd Duffee – 12/31/10
8. Roy Nelson - Last fight: L vs. Junior Dos Santos – 08/07/10
9. Brendan Schaub - Last fight: W vs. Gabriel Gonzaga – 10/23/10
10. Antonio Silva - Last fight: W vs. Mike Kyle – 12/04/10

Movements: Thankfully, there were no movements at HW as the only ranked competitor to fight was Alistair Overeem in his quick crushing of Todd Duffee. With the announcement of Strike Force’s Grand Prix, Lesnar facing Dos Santos in June, and Cain Velasquez on the shelf for some time, the HW division is going to be shaken up this year. Probably.

Light-Heavyweight (186lbs-205lbs):
Champion: Mauricio Rua - Last fight: W vs. Lyoto Machida – 05/08/10

1. Rashad Evans - Last fight: W vs. Quinton Jackson - 05/29/10
2. Quinton Jackson - Last fight: W vs. Lyoto Machida - 11/20/10
3. Lyoto Machida - Last fight: L vs. Quinton Jackson - 11/20/10
4. Forrest Griffin- Last fight: W vs. Tito Ortiz - 11/21/09
5. Ryan Bader - Last fight: W vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira – 09/25/10
6. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira - Last fight: L vs. Ryan Bader – 09/25/10
7. Jon Jones - Last fight: W vs. Brandon Vera – 03/27/10
8. Rich Franklin - Last fight: W vs. Chuck Liddell – 06/12/10
9. Matt Hamill - Last fight: W vs. Tito Ortiz – 10/23/10
10. Thiago Silva - Last fight: W vs. Brandon Vera - 01/01/11

Movements: Randy Couture isn’t retiring after all and he’ll face off with Lyoto Machida in April, but he still loses his rank this month as Thiago Silva returned to action with a convincing win over Brandon Vera at UFC 125.

Middleweight (171lbs-185lbs):
Champion: Anderson Silva - Last fight: W vs. Chael Sonnen - 08/07/10

1. Chael Sonnen - Last fight: L vs. Anderson Silva – 08/07/10
2. Yushin Okami - Last fight: W vs. Nathan Marquardt - 11/13/10
3. Nathan Marquardt - Last fight: L vs. Yushin Okami - 11/13/10
4. Demian Maia - Last fight: W vs. Kendall Grove - 12/04/10
5. Vitor Belfort - Last fight: W vs. Rich Franklin – 09/19/09
6. Ronaldo Jacare - Last fight: W vs. Robbie Lawler – 01/29/11
7. Wanderlei Silva - Last fight: W vs. Michael Bisping – 02/20/10
8. Michael Bisping – Last fight: W vs. Yoshihiro Akiyama – 10/16/10
9. Jorge Santiago - Last fight: W vs. Kazuo Misaki – 08/22/10
10. Brian Stann - Last fight: W vs. Chris Leben – 01/01/11

Movements: Look, I know Brian Stann seems an odd choice to have in the top ten, but at the end of the day he smashed Chris Leben, who had just beaten Akiyama, who beat Belcher, and so on. Santiago sneaks back in too because Robbie Lawler was convincingly beaten and there’s nobody else impressive, really.

Welterweight (156lbs-170lbs):
Champion: Georges St-Pierre - Last fight: W vs. Josh Koscheck - 12/11/10

1. Jon Fitch - Last fight: W vs. Thiago Alves - 08/07/10
2. Jake Shields - Last fight: W vs. Martin Kampmann – 10/23/10
3. Thiago Alves - Last fight: W vs. John Howard - 12/11/10
4. Josh Koscheck - Last fight: L vs. Georges St-Pierre - 12/11/10
5. Carlos Condit - Last fight: W vs. Dan Hardy – 10/16/10
6. Martin Kampmann - Last fight: L vs. Jake Shields – 10/23/10
7. BJ Penn - Last fight: W vs. Matt Hughes – 11/20/10
8. Paul Daley - Last fight: W vs. Scott Smith – 12/04/10
9. Matt Hughes - Last fight: L vs. BJ Penn – 11/20/10
10. Diego Sanchez - Last fight: W vs. Paulo Thiago – 10/23/10

Movements: No movements at 170lbs as I’m not one of the many retards who choose to rank Nick Diaz despite him fighting a total of zero top opponents in the last few years.

Lightweight (146lbs-155lbs):
Champion: Frankie Edgar - Last fight: D vs. Gray Maynard – 01/01/11

1. Gray Maynard - Last fight: D vs. Frankie Edgar - 01/01/11
2. Kenny Florian - Last fight: L vs. Gray Maynard - 08/28/10
3. Gilbert Melendez - Last fight: W vs. Shinya Aoki – 04/17/10
4. Shinya Aoki - Last fight: W vs. Yokthai Sithoar – 10/24/10
5. Eddie Alvarez - Last fight: W vs. Roger Huerta - 10/21/10
6. George Sotiropoulos - Last fight: W vs. Joe Lauzon – 11/20/10
7. Tatsuya Kawajiri - Last fight: W vs. Josh Thomson – 12/31/10
8. Melvin Guillard - Last fight: W vs. Evan Dunham – 01/22/11
9. Clay Guida - Last fight: W vs. Takanori Gomi – 01/01/11
10. Jim Miller – Last fight: W vs. Charles Oliveira – 12/11/10

Movements: Few shakeups here, mainly towards the bottom end of the top ten. Edgar and Maynard’s draw means nothing changes at the top (and on another note, I can’t understand why other rankings have randomly dropped Florian to the lower reaches when he only lost to Gray Maynard who might be the best in the world...) and as much as I’d have loved to have dumped Aoki out altogether as he lost in such a ridiculous fashion, it wasn’t a proper MMA fight as such and he has his win over Kawajiri who dominated Josh Thomson. Elsewhere we lose Gomi and gain Guida, and due to Melvin Guillard’s beating of Evan Dunham – who let’s be fair, didn’t lose to Sean Sherk – we lose both Dunham and Sherk and gain Melvin. Interesting times.

Featherweight (136lbs-145lbs):
Champion: Jose Aldo - Last fight: W vs. Manvel Gamburyan – 09/30/10

1. Michihiro Omigawa - Last fight: W vs. Cole Escovedo – 09/25/10
2. Hatsu Hioki - Last fight: W vs. Marlon Sandro – 12/31/10
3. Manvel Gamburyan - Last fight: L vs. Jose Aldo – 09/30/10
4. Marlon Sandro - Last fight: L vs. Hatsu Hioki – 12/31/10
5. Diego Nunes – Last fight: W vs. Mike Brown – 01/01/11
6. Mark Hominick - Last fight: W vs. George Roop – 01/22/11
7. Dustin Poirier - Last fight: W vs. Josh Grispi – 01/01/11
8. Chad Mendes – Last fight: W vs. Javier Vazquez – 11/11/10
9. Raphael Assuncao - Last fight: W vs. LC Davis – 11/11/10
10. Rani Yahya - Last fight: W vs. Mike Brown – 01/22/11

Movements: Big moves at 145lbs this time. Hatsu Hioki beat Marlon Sandro to claim the title of top FW in Japan, but he’s lost to Omigawa previously so the UFC’s recent signing claims the #1 spot. Elsewhere Diego Nunes climbs up with a win over Mike Brown, while Rani Yahya’s win over Brown also pushes him into the top ten. Hominick enters so highly because he smacked around Leonard Garcia during his recent run, and of course Garcia smashed Takaya who everyone suddenly has a hard-on for because he beat Bibi Fernandes.

Bantamweight (126lbs-135lbs):
Champion: Dominick Cruz - Last fight: W vs. Scott Jorgensen – 12/16/10

1. Urijah Faber - Last fight: W vs. Takeya Mizugaki – 11/11/10
2. Joseph Benavidez - Last fight: W vs. Wagnney Fabiano – 11/11/10
3. Brian Bowles - Last fight: L vs. Dominick Cruz – 03/06/10
4. Miguel Angel Torres - Last fight: W vs. Charlie Valencia – 09/30/10
5. Scott Jorgensen - Last fight: L vs. Dominick Cruz – 12/16/10
6. Takeya Mizugaki - Last fight: L vs. Urijah Faber – 11/11/10
7. Rani Yahya - Last fight: L vs. Takeya Mizugaki – 04/24/10
8. Demetrious Johnson - Last fight: W vs. Damacio Page – 11/11/10
9. Wagnney Fabiano - Last fight: L vs. Joseph Benavidez – 11/11/10
10. Eddie Wineland - Last fight: W vs. Ken Stone – 12/16/10

Movements: With Rani Yahya’s move to 145lbs we gain Eddie Wineland, he of the vicious slam KO. He’ll face Urijah Faber in March. I suspect this class, like 145lbs, will be heavily shaken up now it’s integrated into the UFC.

Until next month, see ya.

Scott Newman:
NewmanMMA@gmail.com





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