UFC 144 Results: The Top 25 Pound-for-Pound Fighters in the UFC

Tim McTiernanCorrespondent IFebruary 27, 2012

UFC 144 Results: The Top 25 Pound-for-Pound Fighters in the UFC

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    What a crazy night of fights we had on Saturday.

    In what is undoubtedly the most stacked card yet this year, we had a seven-fight main card, featuring almost all top 10 fighters in six different divisions.

    In addition to top 10 fighters, five of the top 25 pound-for-pound fighters were in action, and those four were Hatsu Hioki, Yushin Okami, Rampage Jackson, Benson Henderson and Frankie Edgar.

    Unfortunately three of those guys lost, which is sure to mix up the pound-for-pound rankings. Let's take a look at where everyone now stands after UFC 144.

No. 25: Jim Miller

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    Age: 28

    Weight Class: Lightweight

    Record: 21-3

    Last Fight: Submission victory over Melvin Guillard at UFC on FX

    Next Fight: Nate Diaz at UFC on Fox 3

    Jim Miller's most recent fight against Melvin Guillard at UFC on FX was one of the more entertaining rounds in recent memory.

    Miller was rocked badly and was still able to survive, come back, take the back of Guillard and choke him out.

    With that win, Miller proved his worth as one of the best fighters on the planet, and will face Nate Diaz at UFC on Fox 3 in what is likely a No. 1 contender match.

No. 24: Jake Ellenberger

2 of 25

    Age: 26

    Weight Class: Welterweight

    Record: 27-5

    Last Fight: Unanimous decision victory over Diego Sanchez

    Next Fight: TBA

    Welcome to the top 25, Mr. Ellenberger.

    In his last fight, Jake had an absolute war with Diego "The Dream" Sanchez in the main event of the UFC's inaugural event on Fuel TV.

    Although he was nearly finished in the third round, Ellenberger had done enough in the first two to take home the victory.

    He is now looking for a shot at the interim welterweight title.

No. 23: Vitor Belfort

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    Age: 34

    Weight Class: Middleweight

    Record: 21-9

    Last Fight: Submission victory over Anthony Johnson at UFC 142

    Next Fight: Wanderlei Silva at UFC 147*

    With Nick Diaz announcing his retirement, the door opened to a new face, and that face was Vitor Belfort.

    Belfort is the former UFC light heavyweight champion and the former UFC heavyweight tournament champion.

    These days, Belfort is a top-five middleweight who has won seven of his last eight fights.

    *Unofficial

No. 22: Josh Koscheck

4 of 25

    Age: 34

    Weight Class: Welterweight

    Record: 17-5

    Last Fight: Split decision victory over Mike Pierce at UFC 143

    Next Fight: Johny Hendricks at UFC on Fox 3

    Koscheck is now the No. 3 welterweight in the world, and defeated Mike Pierce via split decision at UFC 143.

    It was a close, grueling fight, but Kos was able to pull out the win and stay near the top of the division.

    He'll now face off against Johny Hendricks at UFC on Fox 3.

No. 21: Lyoto Machida

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    Age: 33

    Weight Class: Light Heavyweight

    Record: 17-3

    Last Fight: Submission loss to Jon Jones at UFC 140

    Next Fight: TBA

    Lyoto Machida is a former light heavyweight champion, and he wants that belt back. Unfortunately, he isn't likely to get it anytime soon.

    At UFC 140, Machida was submitted in the second round by Jon Jones and has now lost three of his last four fights.

    Machida likely will look to come back better than ever, and he will be sure to put in a lot of work between now and then.

No. 20: Frank Mir

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    Age: 32

    Weight Class: Heavyweight

    Record: 16-5

    Last Fight: Submission victory over Minotauro Nogueira at UFC 140

    Next Fight: Cain Velasquez at TBA*

    Next up is the former heavyweight champion, Frank Mir.

    Mir has quietly earned himself a three-fight winning streak, including wins over two top-10 opponents (Roy Nelson and Minotauro Nogueira), with the third win being a knockout of Mirko Cro Cop. 

    Mir is now likely to earn a No. 1 contender's match or at least a fight with a top contender.

    *Unofficial

No. 19: Hatsu Hioki

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    Age: 28

    Weight Class: Featherweight

    Record: 26-4-2

    Last Fight: Unanimous decision victory over Bart Palaszweski at UFC 144

    Next Fight: TBA

    Many people were surprised to see Hatsu Hioki on a top 25 pound-for-pound list after just one—underwhelming—UFC appearance.

    However, on Saturday night, he showed everyone why he is one of the best featherweights in the world, and is more than deserving of a spot on the top 25 pound-for-pound fighters.

No. 18: Urijah Faber

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    Age: 32

    Weight Class: Bantamweight

    Record: 26-5

    Last Fight: Submission victory over Brian Bowles at UFC 139

    Next Fight: Dominick Cruz at TBA

    Urijah Faber is the former WEC featherweight champion, but is 0-3 in his past three title fights, including his loss of the title and losses while challenging for two more.

    At UFC 139, Faber earned another shot at the bantamweight title when he defeated Brian Bowles via second-round submission.

    He will now coach season 15 of The Ultimate Fighter against Dominick Cruz.

No. 17: Gray Maynard

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    Age: 32

    Weight Class: Lightweight

    Record: 10-1-1 [1 NC]

    Last Fight: TKO loss to Frankie Edgar at UFC 136

    Next Fight: TBA

    Had the fight gods done this a little differently, Gray Maynard could have been the UFC lightweight champion.

    Maynard holds a win over the former champ, Frankie Edgar. In their rematch, they fought to a split draw, and in the third fight of the trilogy, Maynard lost to Edgar in the fourth round via TKO.

    Maynard will look to rebound and start his climb back up the ladder now that Frankie Edgar is not the champion anymore.

No. 16: Cain Velasquez

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    Age: 29

    Weight Class: Heavyweight

    Record: 9-1

    Last Fight: TKO loss to Junior dos Santos at UFC on Fox 1

    Next Fight: Frank Mir at TBA*

    Cain Velasquez is the former UFC heavyweight champion, and he lost the title at UFC on Fox 1, when he was TKO'd by Junior dos Santos.

    Velasquez is the complete package in the heavyweight division. He's a great wrestler who Brock Lesnar couldn't keep down.

    He has endless cardio, which is sure to help if he ever has to go all five rounds. He also has great striking to complement all that.

    Unfortunately, it may now be revealed that he has a suspect chin. But we'll have to wait and see on that.

    *Unofficial

No. 15: Alistair Overeem

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    Age: 31

    Weight Class: Heavyweight

    Record: 36-11 [1 NC]

    Last Fight: TKO victory over Brock Lesnar at UFC 141

    Next Fight: Junior dos Santos at UFC 146

    Alistair Overeem proved his doubters wrong at UFC 141, as he defeated Brock Lesnar by first-round TKO.

    Coming into this fight, the biggest knock on Overeem was the fact that he had never truly faced a top opponent since moving to heavyweight.

    He faced a top heavyweight at UFC 141 and showed everyone that he is the real deal.

No. 14: Shogun Rua

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    Age: 30

    Weight Class: Light Heavyweight

    Record: 21-6

    Last Fight: Unanimous-decision loss to Dan Henderson at UFC 139

    Next Fight: TBA

    Shogun may have lost at UFC 139, but in such a close fight, there really is no loser.

    Rua and Dan Henderson had an epic battle for the ages, which easily could have gone either way—or could have been a draw.

    However, Rua now drops to 4-4 in the UFC, and a title shot seems out of reach for now.

    Perhaps a move to middleweight is in his future.

No. 13: Joseph Benavidez

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    Age: 27

    Weight Class: Flyweight

    Record: 15-2

    Last Fight: Unanimous-decision victory over Eddie Wineland at UFC on Versus 5

    Next Fight: Yasuhiro Urushitani at UFC on FX 2

    Joseph Benavidez is the No. 3 bantamweight in the world, and his only two losses have come to the current champion in the division, Dominick Cruz.

    Benavidez's last fight saw him win a unanimous decision over the former champ, Eddie Wineland, at UFC on Versus 5.

    However, with the introduction of the UFC's flyweight division, Benavidez will now face off with Yasuhiro Urushitani as part of a four-man tournament to declare the UFC's first flyweight champion.

No. 12: Carlos Condit

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    Age: 27

    Weight Class: Welterweight

    Record: 28-5

    Last Fight: Unanimous-decision victory over Nick Diaz at UFC 143

    Next Fight: TBA

    At UFC 143, Carlos Condit defeated Nick Diaz by unanimous decision to become the interim UFC welterweight champion.

    Condit is 5-1 in the UFC and has impressive victories over Nick Diaz, Dong Hyun Kim, Dan Hardy, Rory MacDonald and Jake Ellenberger.

    The win over Diaz proved that Condit is one of the best in the world, and the welterweight division just got a bit more interesting.

No. 11: Chael Sonnen

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    Age: 34

    Weight Class: Middleweight

    Record: 27-11-1

    Last Fight: Unanimous-decision victory over Michael Bisping at UFC on Fox 2

    Next Fight: Anderson Silva at UFC 147*

    After being out for 14 months, Chael Sonnen came back and submitted Brian Stann in the second round of their fight.

    Not only did Sonnen submit Stann, but he did it while easily controlling Stann on the ground and was never in any danger.

    Then, at UFC on Fox 2, Sonnen earned the unanimous decision over Michael Bisping and put himself in line for a second shot at Anderson Silva.

    *Unofficial

No. 10: Dan Henderson

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    Age: 41

    Weight Class: Light Heavyweight

    Record: 29-8

    Last Fight: Unanimous-decision victory over Mauricio "Shogun" Rua at UFC 139

    Next Fight: TBA

    "Dangerous" Dan Henderson is the former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion and No. 10 on the list.

    After Hendo's impressive win over Shogun at UFC 139, he jumps way up the pound-for-pound list, as he has now proven that age is nothing but a number.

    If you think Hendo is ranked too high, look at it this way—Henderson is 5-1 in his last six fights, including knockouts at middleweight, light heavyweight and heavyweight.

No. 9: Rashad Evans

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    Age: 32

    Weight Class: Light Heavyweight

    Record: 17-1-1

    Last Fight: Unanimous-decision victory over Phil Davis at UFC on Fox 2

    Next Fight: Jon Jones at UFC 145

    Rashad Evans is the former light heavyweight champion and is probably the unluckiest fighter on the entire UFC roster.

    He beat Rampage Jackson for the No. 1 contender spot at UFC 114 and decided to wait for the title shot. Since that time, Rashad has waited, been injured, beaten Tito Ortiz and gotten injured again.

    Then, at UFC on Fox 2, he defeated Phil Davis by unanimous decision and earned his long-awaited shot at the UFC light heavyweight title.

No. 8: Frankie Edgar

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    Age: 30

    Weight Class: Lightweight

    Record: 14-2-1

    Last Fight: Unanimous-decision loss to Benson Henderson at UFC 144

    Next Fight: TBA

    Frankie Edgar is the former UFC lightweight champion and a great young fighter.

    Edgar is possibly the smallest fighter in his division, and he cuts very little weight to make the 155-pound limit for the lightweight division.

    For that reason, even after a loss, Edgar remains near the top of the pound-for-pound list.

    He lost a close decision to Benson Henderson, so it's not like he got destroyed, and he could easily be fighting at featherweight.

    Edgar epitomizes pound-for-pound.

No. 7: Benson Henderson

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    Age: 28

    Weight Class: Lightweight

    Record: 16-2

    Last Fight: Unanimous-decision victory over Frankie Edgar at UFC 144

    Next Fight: TBA

    Benson Henderson is the real deal.

    His win over Frankie Edgar on Saturday night may be a hotly debated decision, but we shouldn't take away from what Henderson has done.

    In his UFC career, he is 4-0, with four straight unanimous decision victories over Mark Boeck, Jim Miller, Clay Guida and now Frankie Edgar.

    There's no denying that he is an outstanding fighter.

No. 6: Junior Dos Santos

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    Age: 27

    Weight Class: Heavyweight

    Record: 14-1

    Last Fight: First-round TKO over Cain Velasquez at UFC on Fox 1.

    Next Fight: Alistair Overeem at UFC 146

    Junior dos Santos is the heavyweight champion of the world. He seems like the first person to take a fight, risk losing a title shot and still earn the shot.

    Dos Santos spent 15 minutes beating down Shane Carwin and kept his shot at the title.

    Then, he beat down Cain Velasquez in 64 seconds and won the title.

    JDS is now the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world and has Overeem coming for him.

No. 5: Dominick Cruz

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    Age: 26

    Weight Class: Bantamweight

    Record: 19-1

    Last Fight: Unanimous-decision victory over Demetrious Johnson at UFC on Versus 6

    Next Fight: Urijah Faber at TBA

    Dominick Cruz is the former WEC bantamweight champion and the current UFC bantamweight champion.

    Cruz is one of the best young fighters in the sport and has only one loss on his record, which he has since avenged.

    In his last fight, he was able to defeat another top contender, as he won all five rounds (on two judges' scorecards) and defeated Demetrious Johnson by unanimous decision.

    Cruz will now coach on season 15 of The Ultimate Fighter against Urijah Faber.

No. 4: Jon Jones

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    Age: 24

    Weight Class: Light Heavyweight

    Record: 15-1

    Last Fight: Submission victory over Lyoto Machida at UFC 140

    Next Fight: Rashad Evans at UFC 145

    Jon Jones is the current UFC light heavyweight champion and has all the tools to become one of the greatest of all time.

    In defeating Lyoto Machida at UFC 140, Jones has completed the single greatest year in MMA history, as he went 4-0 with four finishes over three former UFC champions.

    Jones will now face Rashad Evans for his next fight.

No. 3: Jose Aldo

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    Age: 25

    Weight Class: Featherweight

    Record: 21-1

    Last Fight: KO victory over Chad Mendes at UFC 142

    Next Fight: TBA

    At UFC 142, Jose Aldo proved to everyone that he is still a force to be reckoned with in the featherweight division.

    With his first-round KO of Chad Mendes, Aldo jumped right back into contention as one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the world.

    After Mendes, there are still several challenges left for Aldo at featherweight, including Dustin Poirier, Erik Koch and Hatsu Hioki.

    Perhaps then he ventures to the lightweight division.

No. 2: Georges St-Pierre

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    Age: 30

    Weight Class: Welterweight

    Record: 22-2

    Last Fight: Unanimous-decision victory over Jake Shields at UFC 129

    Next Fight: TBA

    Ah, yes. Let the debate begin. Who really is No. 1? Georges St-Pierre or Anderson Silva?

    Until one of them loses—or they fight one another—this question cannot be answered.

    Georges St-Pierre is the current welterweight champion and was last seen winning a unanimous decision over Jake Shields at the largest MMA event in North American history.

    Now he's injured again and will likely be out until the fall.

No. 1: Anderson Silva

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    Age: 36

    Weight Class: Middleweight

    Record: 31-4

    Last Fight: TKO victory over Yushin Okami at UFC 134

    Next Fight: Chael Sonnen at UFC 147*

    Anderson Silva is the man!

    Silva is the current UFC middleweight champion and gets the nod as the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter on the planet.

    Silva's last fight saw him knock out the last man to defeat him in Yushin Okami. He was able to drop Okami with a jab—twice.

    Up next for "The Spider" will be a rematch with the man who pushed him to the brink of defeat, Chael P. Sonnen.

    *Unofficial

     

    Tim McTiernan is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. For the latest news on everything MMA, follow him on twitter @TimMcTiernan.