The UFC heavyweight division is as exciting as it's ever been.
The top 10 features a list of competitive, competent fighters, and the top two guys, champion Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos, are currently in the process of penning one the greatest rivalries in heavyweight history; they've already surpassed Andrei Arlovski-Tim Sylvia (by a long shot), and their third meeting, which takes place this October, should set them ahead of Brock Lesnar-Frank Mir.
But there's a major problem: Velasquez and dos Santos are in a league of their own.
"Cigano" is currently ranked the No. 1 heavyweight contender following his knockout win over Mark Hunt at UFC 160, while Fabricio Werdum is ranked No. 3, though he is really No. 2 considering Daniel Cormier won't fight Velasquez (his teammate) and is on the way down to light heavyweight. The trouble is, the numbers don't truly represent the disparity that exists between dos Santos and Werdum.
At least for now, the heavyweight division is Velasquez and dos Santos, and then everybody else. And unless the UFC plans on having those two fight one another exclusively over the next two or three years, it's going to need some young talent to climb up the heavyweight ranks.
Fortunately, there are several guys who are young enough, or new enough to the UFC scene, that are capable of making a run into or up the top-10 ranks in the next year.
Striking/takedown statistics courtesy of FightMetric.com.