Agree or disagree, these ranking were compiled in a completely unbiased manner based on several decisive contributing factors to the decision making process. There will be no delusional (hopefully) or political slants to these rankings.
The different factors taken into account when considering the placing of the various top ten listers included, among a variety of other variables:
A) Recent activity at the weight class. Basically the deciding factor was that if you have competed your last two fights or more at a given weight, that’s your division.
For example, Some are going to be upset to see that Hendo and Rich Franklin aren’t considered for 205 due to the fact that neither have competed at the weight class in two or more bouts. Although a case could be made for either man jumping right into the top ten as soon as they return to the weight.
A guy like Anderson Silva is going to be ranked in both the middleweight and light heavyweight divisions due to the fact that he consistently bounces back and forth between divisions.
B) Activity. I could make a very strong case for putting Tito Ortiz in the 205 top ten, but he hasn’t been fighting. Someone like Alistair Overeem that hasn’t fought in over ten months also takes a significant hit for not competing.
C) Level of competition faced in the past
D) Recent wins over top contenders
Like always, we invite you to post your own personal rankings, and agree or disagree with us in a loosely respectful manner in the comment section below.
1. Mike Brown: Sitting at the top of the mountain in the most stacked featherweight division in the sport, WEC featherweight champion Mike Brown has earned his spot at the top of the rankings with wins over Jeff Curran, Leonard Garcia and a pair of victories over Urijah Faber.
2. Urijah Faber: If it wasn’t for Mike Brown it would be easy to make a case for Faber at the number one spot. “The California Kid” holds wins over the likes of Jens Pulver, Jeff Curran and Bibiano Fernandes to name a few.
3. Jose Aldo: A walking highlight reel known for knocking his opponents senseless, perhaps the scariest thing about Aldo is the fact that his ground game is rumored to be better than his stand-up. Aldo holds a big win over Alexandre Franca Nogueira, with his most recent win coming in the form of an Ong Bak flying knee knockout over Cub Swanson.
4. Hatsu Hioki: Sporting a career record of 20-3-2, Hioki has recently made a name for himself under the Sengoku banner where he has put together victories over Chris Manuel, Ronnie Mann and Masanori Kanehara. Other notable wins in his career include Rumina Sato, Jeff Curran and Mark Hominick.
5. Bibiano Fernandes: A former Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu world champion and current DREAM featherweight champion, Fernandes currently holds consecutive wins over Masakazu Imanari, Joe Warren and Hiroyuki Takaya.
6. Joe Soto: With an unblemished record of 8-0, this twenty-two year old rising force was recently crowned the Bellator FC featherweight champion following wins over Ben Greer, Wilson Reis and Yahir Reyes. Soto’s most recent victory came in the form of a gogoplata over Mike Christensen on October 8.
7. Leonard Garcia: Outside of a defeat to Mike Brown at WEC 39, Garcia has gone undefeated in the featherweight division with victories over highly respected fighters Hiroyuki Takaya, Jens Pulver and Jameel Massouh.
8. Raphael Assuncao: Holding an impressive career record of 14-1, Assuncao is a dangerous Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt with recent WEC wins over Jameel Massouh and Yves Jabouin. Raphael also holds a 2006 submission win over Joe Lauzon.
9. Mackens Semerzier: It’s amazing what tapping out a top rated Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt in the first round can do for your career. Semerzier is currently reaping the rewards of his WEC 42 triangle choke shocker over the highly regarded Wagnney Fabiano. At just 4-0, time will tell whether the victory was a one hit wonder or not.
10. Wagnney Fabiano: Before his recent upset defeat to Semerzier, I would have had no problem placing Fabiano near the # 5 spot. Wagnney holds wins over Fredson Paixao and L.C. Davis.
Honorable Mentions: Josh Grispi, Takeshi Inoue, Masanori Kanehara, Michihiro Omigawa, Marlon Sandro