UFC 141 Results: Ranking the Top 10 Light Heavyweights in the UFC
On Friday night, Alexander Gustafsson proved to everyone that he is the real deal in the light heavyweight division.
With his first-round knockout of Vladimir Matyushenko, Gustafsson officially got himself "in the mix" in the division and showed his deadly striking.
Gustafsson was already a top 10 light heavyweight before the fight, but did he move up at all with the win?
Check it out.
No. 10: Ryan Bader
Another conundrum has formed in the light heavyweight division, as there is a triangle of who beat who.
Tito Ortiz beat Ryan Bader, Ryan Bader beat Rogerio Nogueira and Rogerio Nogueira beat Tito Ortiz.
The 10 spot could have gone to Nog or Bader, but I went with Bader because he had the more resounding win over arguably the better opponent.
His next fight will be against Rampage Jackson in Japan.
No. 9: Alexander Gustafsson
Next up is Alexander Gustafsson, who has been on a tear through the UFC as of late.
Gustafsson is 5-1 in the UFC—with five finishes—and his only loss came at the hands of Phil Davis, who is considered by many a future title challenger.
Gustafsson was last seen knocking out Vladimir Matyushenko in the first round.
He is officially "in the mix" in the stacked light heavyweight division.
No. 8: Phil Davis
Phil Davis comes in next on this list and I'm sure there will be many people who are upset about his placement this low.
However, if you really look at it, his biggest win was an uninspired performance over Rogerio Nogueira, who has been underwhelming thus far in his UFC tenure.
Davis will now face Rashad Evans in the main event of UFC on FOX 2.
No. 7: Forrest Griffin
Forrest Griffin is slowly on a decline, but he is still one of the best light heavyweights in the world today.
Griffin is a former light heavyweight champion, a title he won after defeating Rampage Jackson via unanimous decision. Before that, Griffin submitted Shogun Rua.
Griffin has a nice resume, but as of late, he doesn't have all that many big victories.
Unfortunately for Griffin, he may be nothing more than a gatekeeper these days.
No. 6: Lyoto Machida
On Saturday night, Lyoto Machida faced off against Jon Jones and became the second person to—arguably—win a round from Jones in his UFC career.
However, he didn't have a chance to win a second round, as Jones put him to sleep with a standing guillotine.
Machida is now 1-3 in his last four and will have to look to rebuild himself and come back to the Octagon as a new fighter.
No. 5: Rampage Jackson
Rampage Jackson is a former light heavyweight champion and is another fighter who has fallen at the hands of Jon Jones.
Jackson lost via fourth-round submission to Jones at UFC 135.
Jackson will now fight at UFC Japan—also known as UFC 144—where he will face off against Ryan Bader.
No. 4: Shogun Rua
Shogun Rua may have lost at UFC 139, but he has wins over Rampage, Machida and Griffin, so he stays at the No. 4 spot in the light heavyweight division.
Shogun has been wildly inconsistent in his UFC career and has gone 4-4 in eight fights.
At UFC 139, he took an absolute beating in the first three rounds but came back to win the last two.
After the fight against Jon Jones, some people were talking about Shogun potentially moving down to middleweight.
Perhaps now is the time.
No. 3: Rashad Evans
Inactivity has absolutely killed Evans, as he now loses his spot as the No. 2 light heavyweight in the world.
Evans has victories over Rampage Jackson, Tito Ortiz, Forrest Griffin and others and was considered the No. 2 light heavyweight for a long time.
However, now that he has only had one fight in the past 15 months, a case can be made for him not being the second-best light heavyweight.
Evans is still considered the No. 1 contender by Dana White, so should he win his next fight against Phil Davis at UFC on FOX 2, he will finally get his second shot at the light heavyweight title.
No. 2: Dan Henderson
Dan Henderson is for real!
I wanted Henderson to get the win on Saturday night, but realistically, I did not think he would. I thought he was winning over subpar competition in Strikeforce and he would get beaten by Shogun.
However, Henderson proved me, along with all the other doubters, wrong as he beat Shogun via unanimous decision.
Henderson now has a plethora of fights he could take next, but we just have to wait and see what's in store for Hendo.
No. 1: Jon Jones
No real shocker here, having the champ at No. 1.
Not only is Jones the champ, but he is the first light heavyweight champ to uncontroversially defend his belt since Rampage Jackson and the first one to defend it more than once since Chuck Liddell.
Jones is viewed by many as the future of MMA and the light heavyweight division, and after his win on Saturday, he is well on his way.