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Sherdog's Official Mixed Martial Arts Rankings

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aznteabagger

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For the first time Sherdog.com is releasing official rankings spanning eight weight divisions. This is not a ranking based upon skill. Simply, the Sherdog.com ranking takes into account what fighters have accomplished in the ring or cage.


LINK

Post #1   8/10/07 9:56:04AM   

Branwest

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Although I have some disagreements, these rankings are much better than mmaweekly's. I like that they had Urijah Faber higher (#2 rather than #5) among the FW's, and Hendo above Franklin in the MW division. In the WW division, I would've put Karo ahead of Fitch. I have other dissenting opinions, but overall, it's not that bad, esp. compared to mmaweekly's rankings. I also like that they clarify that the rankings aren't necessarily based upon skill, but what they have done lately and where they stand now. That explains why they have Serra #1 among the WW's. Obviously he's not the most skilled WW, but right now, he is the title-holder. He's a very nice guy, and although I wouldn't mind seeing him beat Hughes, I don't think he will (of course I didn't think he'd beat GSP either).

Post #2   8/10/07 10:13:25AM   

peachfuzzz1305

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Jason Lambert WTF

AND MATT SERRA AT # 1 AND BJ EVEN AT 10

Post #3   8/10/07 12:01:08PM   

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Ok, so I did a little post offering what I think of these rankings elsewhere, and I figure I might as well get as much mileage out of it as possible.

***

Their heavyweight rankings are dead on.

At light heavyweight, I disagree that Dan Henderson is ranked above Chuck Liddell. Henderson has had one truly successful bout at light heavyweight, and while defeating Wanderlei Silva earns you a ranking in the top 5 at light heavyweight for sure, I do not feel it allows you to surpass Chuck Liddell, who had previous had tremendous success in the weight class (a grand understatement to be sure). What it comes down to in my mind is: Do wins over Wanderlei Silva and Vitor Belfort mean more than wins over Bablu Sobral, Tito Ortiz, and Randy Couture? It's not even close in my mind.

I still have Lil Nog over Arona myself. Both are 1-1 since 2006. Both were handily defeated by Sokoudjou. Both have defeated Overeem (Lil Nog having done so twice). Arona has more losses, but they came largely to the highest caliber of fighters (Wandy, Shogun, Rampage). Of course, Lil Nogs losses to Sokoudjou and Shogun aren't bad losses by any means. What it comes down to for me is that Arona's biggest win is over Silva, who he also lost to, which discounts the success just a bit in my mind. Lil Nog's success over Overeem twice (which are solid, though not spectacular wins) and Nakamura twice (which are even better wins, as Nakamura is a top 10 guy in my opinion) give Nog a slight edge over Arona.

I don't think Rashad Evans or, in particular, Jason Lambert should be in the top 10 myself, but they aren't bad inclusions at all. The Lambert ranking is more questionable to me. His win over Babalu was a boon. His other key victories include wins over Brandon Lee Hinkle and Terry Martin (who is a middleweight at this point). I don't know that it qualifies Lambert as a top 10 light heavyweight in the world, but it doesn't break my heart to see him ranked 10th, either.

I'm fine with Rich Franklin being ranked above Matt Lindland. Franklin is more active in the division these days and faces tougher competition at middleweight in the past year.

I'm at the point where I feel I must have Denis Kang totally out of place. Everyone seems to have him ranked 6th or 7th, while I have him at 10th. I justify this based on his loss to Misaki, which, while it was a split decision, was still a recent loss. At that point, I feel Misaki must be ranked ahead of Kang. Then Trigg beat Misaki, so Trigg must be ahead of Kang. And since Robbie Lawler then defeated Trigg, he slots in ahead of Trigg; hence, Denis Kang is ranked 10th at middleweight. But, like I say, I think I'm the only person who sees it that way.

Sherdog's justification for Yushin Okami at 8 seems strange. "He's 4-1 in the UFC." While it's nothing to discount, some of Okami's competition may be. Okami has defeated Alan Belcher, which means nothing of consequence, Kalib Starnes, which is a good, but not great win, Rory Singer, which means very, very little, and a win over Mike Swick, who was so undersized in the match that Swick was compelled to move down to his more natural weight class, welterweight. Okami came close (or, not so close depending on your view) to submitting Franklin at UFC 72, but so what? Okami lost the fight, the first fight that was truly a test for Okami in the UFC, and Okami was not particularly compelled to so much as push the pace when it was clear he had lost the first two rounds of the fight. Okami is talented, but to me should not be ranked among the top ten middleweights in the world at this time. Close, very close, in fact, but not yet.

I think Karo deserves to be ranked above Fitch, but it's really close. Karo's wins over Burkman, Fickett, and Nick Thompson mean more to me than Fitch's wins over Alves, Burkman, and Brock Larson, but again, it's really, really close. If you want to use a tie breaker of Fitch having a 5-0 record since 2006 compared to Karo's 3-1 record over the same period of time, then Fitch comes out ahead. In fact, I probably just talked myself into swapping those two.

I should probably put Aoki at welterweight. I completely agree with Sherdog's reasoning for his ranking. Or, failing that, I wish UFC would sign him and have him fight at lightweight. Or welterweight. I don't care, I just want his status to be clear.

Gomi at #1 lightweight is good to see. Melendez at 2...well, if Aoki is up at welterweight and KID is being excluded (which I disagree with), then you really have to argue Melendez v. Ribeiro. For now, I'm fine with Melendez being ranked higher. After the K1 tournament, we'll see how things change.

Marcus Aurelio seems to be ranked too high. He defeated Gomi, which was big. He then lost to Gomi, which discounts the accomplishment to a certain extent. Aurelio is also just 1-2 since 2006.

BJ Penn should not be ranked at lightweight yet. A win over Jens Pulver alone, in 2007, means little at lightweight. BJ's previous fight at lightweight was in 2004 against Duane Ludwig, and even then BJ was the UFC welterweight champion (and that fight with Ludwig may have been at 170lbs, I don't know for sure). So no, no ranking for BJ just yet. Don't worry, everyone will be able to put him at #1 soon enough.

At featherweight, Tamura over Faber is fine. I'd go Faber over Tamura, but then I've witnessed more of Faber than I have of Tamura, so I'm biased in that regard.

This is where I get confused when ranking fighters, because guys at 145lbs. can conceivably fight in any of three divisions at the drop of a hat. So, if what I am about to say is wrong because a fighter is not really at featherweight, please, correct me.

That having been said, where is Rafael Assuncao? 11-1 overall, 4-1 since 2006, his only loss coming to Jeff Curran, and wins over Joe Lauzon and Jorge Masvidal. This man should be ranked.

Fredson Paixao (ok, does anyone know how to pronounce his last name? I cannot figure it out) should be ranked ahead of Imanari by virtue of having beaten him last august.

Why is Yoshihiro Maeda ranked in the top 10? He lost to Joe Pearson in late 2006, so right there you have Pearson ahead of him, and Pearson simply is not ranked in the top 10.

On the same token, Danny Batten should not be in the top 10. The loss to Maeda takes care of that. Batten also doesn't have any particularly distinguishing wins on his record, though if you want to argue his case by way of his "good losses," he did lose to Maeda and Imanari for two of his five defeats. That doesn't mean so much to me.

I have many issues with the bantamweight rankings. Miguel Torres at 9? He hasn't lost since 2003, when he was bested by Ryan Ackerman (who is a 145lbs. fighter). In 2005, Torress avenged that loss. Since then, Torres has also defeated Joe Pearson, another 145lbs. fighter. Obviously, Torres sports a 5-0 record since 2006. The obvious argument against Torres is that he hasn't fought enough tough competition. I understand, that means a lot to me as well. But it gets to a point where when you have X number of wins and very few losses (in Torres' case, 1), it's clear that you are among the very best in the world at your weight class.

I like Okazaki over Galvao. I do think they should be back to back, but Okazaki offers the superior track record. No losses (Galvao has one, though it is to Hokazono). Wins over Atsushi Yamamoto, So Tazawa, Hiroyuki Tanaka, and Takahiro Hosoi compare favorably to Galvao's wins over Kenji Osawa and Fredson Paixao. Another close call to be sure, but I think there is enough to put Okazaki over Galvao.

Yamamoto should be ranked ahead of Osawa. Both fighters are coming off of loses (Yamamoto to Okazaki and Osawa to Galvao), and both fighters have relatively recent victories over Takeya Mizugaki. Yamamoto, on the other hand, has a slightly better record since 2006 (3-2 compared to Osawa's 2-2), and Yamamoto's other key victory is over So Tazawa, which compares favorably to Osawa's victory over Hiroyuki Tanaka.

Chase Beebe should not be included in the top 10. His only victory of note is over Eddie Wineland. Meanwhile, So Tazawa, who has remarkably similar credentials to Takeya Mizugaki, is on the outside looking in. Not in my book. If Beebe beats Tapia, then he should be ranked in the top 10.

Post #4   8/10/07 12:34:24PM   

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All I know is that I'm pissed that Rashad and Lambert are ranked above Tito. Neither of them has done enough to remove Tito from the top 10.

Post #5   8/10/07 1:04:41PM   

AndrewRJ

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henderson is a better fighter than chuck will ever be, i think chuck is a great fighter but henderson is so much better

Post #6   8/10/07 1:05:49PM   

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for the most part i agree with that, there is a few thing wrong though

Post #7   8/10/07 1:25:43PM   

kimoron

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not a bad list but its safe to say that i have a few issues with it, the biggest being gg at #3 on the hw list. saw what he did to crocop just like everyone else but i dont think he should be in the top five. call me crazy but i still think he has more to prove. filho at #2 makes me wonder a little bit also. its a shame hes in the wec were he'll never face any great competition. i think the next four guys above him would beat him. rashad being in the top ten is arguable and i can see how some might have him in there but jason lambert being in there with no tito made me laugh. one win over a sloppy babalu shouldnt put him in there.

Post #8   8/10/07 2:43:52PM   

roman

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I was so stoked Tito didn't make the cut....... GREAT JOB SHERDOG!!!!!!

Last edited 8/10/07 3:28PM server time by roman
Edit note/reason: n/a

Post #9   8/10/07 3:27:41PM   

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They say BJ Penn needs to beat someone noteable. Well he beat the guy you ranked #1(Gomi) and #3 (Hughes). I don't get that one at all.

Post #10   8/10/07 4:53:41PM   

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Posted by peachfuzzz1305

Jason Lambert WTF

AND MATT SERRA AT # 1 AND BJ EVEN AT 10



LOL + 1 here.

Post #11   8/10/07 5:12:14PM   

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Posted by NME

Sherdog's justification for Yushin Okami at 8 seems strange. "He's 4-1 in the UFC." While it's nothing to discount, some of Okami's competition may be. Okami has defeated Alan Belcher, which means nothing of consequence, Kalib Starnes, which is a good, but not great win, Rory Singer, which means very, very little, and a win over Mike Swick, who was so undersized in the match that Swick was compelled to move down to his more natural weight class, welterweight. Okami came close (or, not so close depending on your view) to submitting Franklin at UFC 72, but so what? Okami lost the fight, the first fight that was truly a test for Okami in the UFC, and Okami was not particularly compelled to so much as push the pace when it was clear he had lost the first two rounds of the fight. Okami is talented, but to me should not be ranked among the top ten middleweights in the world at this time. Close, very close, in fact, but not yet.



I whole heartedly disagree with this. He has four losses to some very accomplished fighters. He has a win over the number one guy and even though it was a DQ he was winning before the up kick. He did better against Silva then Franklin, Marquardt, and Lutter.

Post #12   8/10/07 5:40:22PM   

Branwest

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It probably doesn't matter how the fighters are rated, there's always going to be somebody that disagrees. You can't please everyone. These rankings are far from perfect in my opinion, but they are certainly better than mmaweekly's.

Post #13   8/10/07 7:04:01PM   

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Posted by roman

I was so stoked Tito didn't make the cut....... GREAT JOB SHERDOG!!!!!!


How is that a great job, LHW champ for four years? I'd say he's accomplished more than Rashad and Lambert Combined, I have Tito and lil nog ahead of Arona.

Post #14   8/10/07 7:26:28PM   

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I still can't see why Gomi is ranked number 1. Yeah Diaz tested positive for marijuana but the last time that I checked pot isin't a performance enhancing drug. Gomi also got dominated by BJ and BJ is only ranked tenth? The rankings for the Heavyweight division are pretty close. I wouldn't have ranked Tim Sylvia where they did.
Thats one thing that I don't like about ranking systems...anyone with an opionion (including me) can make one just based on emotional response or personal like or dislike for a certain fighter so everybodies list is going to be different. Oh well.

Post #15   8/11/07 9:51:42AM   
 
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