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UFC Rankings for Each Weight Division Following UFC Fight Night 40

Sean SmithAnalyst IMay 13, 2014

UFC Rankings for Each Weight Division Following UFC Fight Night 40

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    USA TODAY Sports

    Matt Brown keeps on taking care of business inside the Octagon.

    At UFC Fight Night 40, he overcame a slow start to finish Erick Silva with strikes in the third round. After he came back from near defeat, the bout epitomized Brown's career, which has seen him reach title contention only a few years after losing three fights in a row.

    Now riding seven straight wins, he is closing in on the world's top welterweights. Was Saturday's victory over the up-and-coming Silva enough to vault "The Immortal" into the Top Five in the 170-pound rankings? 

    With UFC Fight Night 40 in the books and UFC 173 coming up on May 24, here are the latest official UFC rankings as voted on by various members of the MMA media, via UFC.com.

Pound-for-Pound

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    USA TODAY Sports

    No Top 15 pound-for-pound fighters stepped into the Octagon at UFC Fight Night 40.

    However, Renan Barao will be looking to maintain his spot among the Top Five fighters in the world at UFC 173. The bantamweight champion will defend his belt against TJ Dillashaw in the main event.

    With a win over Dillashaw, Barao would already match the UFC championship reigns of MMA legends Chuck Liddell, Frank Shamrock and Pat Miletich. 

     

    Official UFC Pound-for-Pound Rankings

    1. Jon Jones 
    2. Jose Aldo 
    3. Renan Barao 
    4. Cain Velasquez       
    5. Demetrious Johnson 
    6. Chris Weidman  
    7. Anderson Silva 
    8. Anthony Pettis 
    9. Johny Hendricks 
    10. Ronda Rousey 
    11. Vitor Belfort  
    12. Benson Henderson     
    13. Alexander Gustafsson (+1)
    14. Gilbert Melendez (-1) 
    15. Urijah Faber 

     

    Rankings Analysis

    Good Call

    Alexander Gustafsson has done more to prove he's closer to the top of the light heavyweight division than Gilbert Melendez has done to show he is capable of dethroning Anthony Pettis in the lightweight class. So, it was a good call to move Gustafsson above the former Strikeforce champion.

    While Gustafsson fought to a narrow decision with current 205-pound titleholder Jon Jones, Melendez battled to a controversial decision with Benson Henderson, who was later submitted by Pettis.

     

    Bad Call

    No changes were made to the pound-for-pound rankings.  

     

    Results and Upcoming Fights

    UFC Fight Night 40 Pound-for-Pound Fights

    • None

     

    UFC 173 Pound-for-Pound Fights

    • No. 3 Renan Barao vs. TJ Dillashaw

Heavyweight

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    USA TODAY Sports

    Soa Palelei is now 3-0 since returning to the UFC roster.

    On Saturday, "The Hulk" steamrolled UFC newcomer Ruan Potts in the first round. He's not beating ranked heavyweights, but Palelei will eventually find himself in title contention should he keep racking up the victories.

    No heavyweights are set to compete at UFC 173, but Stipe Miocic will attempt to hold onto his Top 10 position when he meets light heavyweight Fabio Maldonado on May 31. 

     

    Official UFC Heavyweight Rankings

    Champion: Cain Velasquez

    1. Fabricio Werdum 
    2. Junior dos Santos 
    3. Travis Browne     
    4. Antonio Silva   
    5. Josh Barnett 
    6. Alistair Overeem 
    7. Stipe Miocic 
    8. Mark Hunt   
    9. Roy Nelson 
    10. Frank Mir   
    11. Gabriel Gonzaga 
    12. Stefan Struve    
    13. Brendan Schaub (+1)
    14. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (-1) 
    15. Soa Palelei (NR) 

     

    Rankings Analysis

    Good Call

    Daniel Cormier has his second light heavyweight bout coming up, so he no longer belongs in the heavyweight rankings. Some other fighters might be worthy of the No. 15 position, but replacing Cormier with Palelei was a good enough call.

     

    Bad Call

    Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira has not won in a long time and looked bad against Roy Nelson, but it was a loss that many expected against a more highly ranked adversary.

    "Minotauro" has lost to Top 10 heavyweights Nelson, Fabricio Werdum and Frank Mir since knocking out Brendan Schaub in August 2011. Schaub has only beaten unranked fighters Matt Mitrione and Lavar Johnson since that loss, so he hasn't earned a spot above Nogueira. 

     

    Results and Upcoming Fights

    UFC Fight Night 40 Heavyweight Fights

    • No. 15 Soa Palelei defeated Ruan Potts by (T)KO in the first round.

     

    UFC 173 Heavyweight Fights

    • None

Light Heavyweight

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    USA TODAY Sports

    No light heavyweights competed at UFC Fight Night 40, but the division will heat back up at UFC 173.

    The event will see former heavyweight contender Daniel Cormier continue his quest to earn a shot at a UFC championship. He picked up a win over Patrick Cummins in his first 205-pound showing, but he'll face a much tougher test in Dan Henderson this time around. 

    Rocked multiple times by Mauricio Rua in his latest outing, Henderson appeared to be heading toward retirement. However, the former Pride FC champion somehow survived and blasted Shogun with a right hand to return to the win column.

     

    Official UFC Light Heavyweight Rankings

    Champion: Jon Jones

    1. Alexander Gustafsson  
    2. Rashad Evans 
    3. Glover Teixeira 
    4. Daniel Cormier 
    5. Anthony Johnson 
    6. Dan Henderson
    7. Phil Davis 
    8. Mauricio Rua 
    9. Chael Sonnen 
    10. Ryan Bader 
    11. Jimi Manuwa 
    12. Rafael Cavalcante (+1)
    13. Vitor Belfort (-1)
    14. Ovince Saint Preux 
    15. James Te Huna 

     

    Rankings Analysis

    Good Call

    By all accounts, Vitor Belfort is still in line to challenge for the middleweight championship.

    That is where he was scheduled to fight before the Nevada State Athletic Commission banned testosterone replacement therapy, which forced him out of a bout with Chris Weidman. So, unless Belfort is booked to compete at 205 pounds, he should now be ranked at 185 pounds only.

    Accordingly, it was a good call to drop him below Rafael Cavalcante in the light heavyweight rankings.

     

    Bad Call

    No bad calls were made in this edition of the light heavyweight rankings.

     

    Results and Upcoming Fights

    UFC Fight Night 40 Light Heavyweight Fights

    • None

     

    UFC 173 Light Heavyweight Fights

    • No. 4 Daniel Cormier vs. No. 6 Dan Henderson

Middleweight

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    USA TODAY Sports

    Carrying two straight losses into UFC Fight Night 40, Costas Philippou needed to beat Lorenz Larkin. With a knockout in the first round, Philippou did more than get his hand raised. He reasserted himself as a contender in the middleweight division.

    Also on Saturday, Ed Herman returned to the win column by edging Rafael Natal in a closely contested matchup. Neither fighter is currently ranked, but Herman could sneak into the Top 15 with a few more big wins in a row.

    While no middleweight bouts are booked for UFC 173, Mark Munoz and Gegard Mousasi will headline a UFC Fight Night card on May 31. 

     

    Official UFC Middleweight Rankings

    Champion: Chris Weidman

    1. Anderson Silva   
    2. Lyoto Machida (+1) 
    3. Vitor Belfort (-1)
    4. Ronaldo Souza  
    5. Luke Rockhold 
    6. Tim Kennedy 
    7. Mark Munoz  
    8. Michael Bisping 
    9. Francis Carmont
    10. Costas Philippou (+2) 
    11. Gegard Mousasi (-1) 
    12. Yoel Romero (-1)
    13. Tim Boetsch    
    14. Thales Leites 
    15. Brad Tavares 

     

    Rankings Analysis

    Good Call

    Gegard Mousasi and Yoel Romero might have more potential than Philippou, but the UFC Fight Night 40 winner has done more inside the Octagon. Since both are still looking for a UFC win over a current Top 15 middleweight, Mousasi and Romero should be ranked below Philippou for now. 

     

    Bad Call

    There is a reason Belfort was lined up to challenge Weidman before Lyoto Machida. "The Phenom" destroyed Dan Henderson, who recently fought to a narrow decision with Machida, so Belfort should be ranked above "The Dragon."

     

    Results and Upcoming Fights

    UFC Fight Night 40 Middleweight Fights

    • No. 10 Costas Philippou defeated Lorenz Larkin by (T)KO in the first round.
    • Ed Herman defeated Rafael Natal by unanimous decision.

     

    UFC 173 Middleweight Fights

    • None

Welterweight

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    USA TODAY Sports

    Silva continues to come up short on opportunities to earn a Top 10 ranking in the welterweight division.

    At UFC Fight Night 40, he hurt Brown with a body kick early on but wasn't able to finish. The scrappy Brown turned the tables and ended up breaking Silva down in the third round.

    In addition to Brown, Neil Magny, Zak Cummings and Albert Tumenov also recorded wins at 170 pounds on Saturday. However, none of those fighters are near the Top 15 right now. 

     

    Official UFC Welterweight Rankings

    Champion: Johny Hendricks

    1. Robbie Lawler 
    2. Rory MacDonald 
    3. Tyron Woodley 
    4. Carlos Condit 
    5. Jake Ellenberger      
    6. Matt Brown (+1) 
    7. Hector Lombard (-1)
    8. Demian Maia 
    9. Dong Hyun Kim 
    10. Tarec Saffiedine  
    11. Kelvin Gastelum 
    12. Mike Pyle  
    13. Gunnar Nelson       
    14. Ryan LaFlare (+1)
    15. Erick Silva (-1)

     

    Rankings Analysis

    Good Call

    No good calls were made in this edition of the welterweight rankings.

     

    Bad Call

    Brown may have a longer winning streak going than Hector Lombard, but the former Bellator MMA champion has a stronger resume than The Immortal. While Brown's victory over Silva was probably his biggest to date, Lombard recently decimated Jake Shields, who would still be in the Top 10 had he not been released.

     

    Results and Upcoming Fights

    UFC Fight Night 40 Welterweight Fights

    • No. 6 Matt Brown defeated No. 15 Erick Silva by (T)KO in the third round.
    • Neil Magny defeated Tim Means by unanimous decision.
    • Zak Cummings defeated Yan Cabral by unanimous decision.
    • Albert Tumenov defeated Anthony Lapsley by (T)KO in the first round.

     

    UFC 173 Welterweight Fights

    • No. 1 Robbie Lawler vs. No. 5 Jake Ellenberger
    • David Michaud vs. Li Jingliang

Lightweight

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    USA TODAY Sports

    Formerly a contender in the featherweight division, Erik Koch hoped to make a quick run toward the Top 15 at 155 pounds. The Roufusport fighter suffered a significant setback on Saturday, though.

    He met Daron Cruickshank in a matchup that promised entertaining striking exchanges. However, Koch ended up on the wrong end of those exchanges and was ultimately stopped by Cruickshank in the first round.

    UFC 173 will feature five lightweight matchups. Although none of the 10 competitors are ranked, some of them could be a couple of victories away from breaking into the Top 15 rankings. 

     

    Official UFC Lightweight Rankings

    Champion: Anthony Pettis

    1. Gilbert Melendez 
    2. Benson Henderson 
    3. Josh Thomson 
    4. Khabib Nurmagomedov     
    5. Donald Cerrone (+1)
    6. Rafael dos Anjos (+1) 
    7. Jim Miller (+1) 
    8. Myles Jury (+2)
    9. Gray Maynard (+1) 
    10. Michael Johnson (+1)
    11. Rustam Khabilov (+3) 
    12. Edson Barboza  
    13. Bobby Green   
    14. Jorge Masvidal (+1)
    15. Joe Lauzon (NR)

     

    Rankings Analysis

    Good Call

    Based on his win over Jorge Masvidal, Rustam Khabilov deserves to be ranked No. 11 right now. Bobby Green's biggest win came against Pat Healy, who recently lost Masvidal.

     

    Bad Call

    Nate Diaz's removal from the rankings due to inactivity is silly. Multiple fighters on this list have been out of action longer than the former title challenger.

     

    Results and Upcoming Fights

    UFC Fight Night 40 Lightweight Fights

    • Daron Cruickshank defeated Erik Koch by (T)KO in the first round.
    • Justin Salas defeated Ben Wall by (T)KO in the first round.

     

    UFC 173 Lightweight Fights

    • Jamie Varner vs. James Krause
    • Michael Chiesa vs. Francisco Trinaldo
    • Tony Ferguson vs. Katsunori Kikuno
    • Al Iaquinta vs. Mitch Clarke
    • Anthony Njokuani vs. Vinc Pichel

Featherweight

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    USA TODAY Sports

    Nik Lentz maintained his position as a Top 10 featherweight on Saturday.

    Over three rounds, he scored four takedowns on Manny Gamburyan. Spending five minutes on top and controlling his opponent along the fence for several more minutes, he coasted to a clear decision win.

    At UFC 173, unranked 145-pounders Sam Sicilia and Aaron Phillips will be the only fighters representing the featherweight class. 

     

    Official UFC Featherweight Rankings

    Champion: Jose Aldo

    1. Chad Mendes
    2. Frankie Edgar 
    3. Ricardo Lamas 
    4. Cub Swanson 
    5. Chan Sung Jung (+1)
    6. Dustin Poirier (-1)  
    7. Clay Guida (+1)
    8. Dennis Siver (-1)
    9. Nik Lentz  
    10. Dennis Bermudez (+1)
    11. Jeremy Stephens (-1)  
    12. Darren Elkins    
    13. Conor McGregor  
    14. Tatsuya Kawajiri 
    15. Diego Brandao (NR)

     

    Rankings Analysis

    Good Call

    Chan Sung Jung has only lost to Jose Aldo since beating Dustin Poirier. There was no reason "The Korean Zombie" should have fallen below Poirier to begin with.

     

    Bad Call

    It is tough to decide whether Dennis Bermudez should be ranked above or below Darren Elkins, given that both have recent wins over Steven Siler and the latter owns a win over Diego Brandao, who submitted the former. In his most recent outing, Jeremy Stephens picked up a clear decision victory over Elkins. Bermudez might have more potential than a veteran like Stephens, but the win over Elkins gives "Lil' Heathen" a stronger resume as things currently stand.

     

    Results and Upcoming Fights

    UFC Fight Night 40 Featherweight Fights

    • No. 9 Nik Lentz defeated Manny Gamburyan by unanimous decision.

     

    UFC 173 Featherweight Fights

    • Sam Sicilia vs. Aaron Phillips

Bantamweight

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    USA TODAY Sports

    A huge underdog heading into Saturday, Johnny Eduardo stunned Eddie Wineland with his impressive striking.

    Late in the opening round, the Brazilian blasted Wineland with two right hands. In doing so, Eduardo became an instant contender in the bantamweight class, while Wineland will have some ground to make up following the deflating loss.

    Four Top 15 bantamweights will step into the Octagon at UFC 173, including titleholder Barao. 

     

    Official UFC Bantamweight Rankings

    Champion: Renan Barao

    1. Urijah Faber   
    2. Raphael Assuncao 
    3. Michael McDonald  
    4. TJ Dillashaw (+1)   
    5. Eddie Wineland (-1)
    6. Takeya Mizugaki   
    7. Iuri Alcantara 
    8. Mike Easton 
    9. Dominick Cruz    
    10. Francisco Rivera (+1)
    11. Erik Perez (-1) 
    12. Johnny Eduardo (NR)
    13. Alex Caceres (-1) 
    14. Bryan Caraway (-1)  
    15. Wilson Reis (-1)

     

    Rankings Analysis

    Good Call

    At 24 years old, Erik Perez has a higher ceiling than Francisco Rivera, but his resume is slightly less impressive right now. While Perez is coming off a decision win over Edwin Figueroa, Rivera owns a knockout victory over Figueroa in addition to a victory over George Roop. 

     

    Bad Call

    In college football rankings, it makes sense that teams don't skyrocket up the rankings following upsets. That's not the case in MMA, where fighters compete only a couple of times per year, though. Eduardo should be ranked above Wineland immediately.

     

    Results and Upcoming Fights

    UFC Fight Night 40 Bantamweight Fights

    • No. 12 Johnny Eduardo defeated No. 5 Eddie Wineland by (T)KO in the first round.

     

    UFC 173 Bantamweight Fights

    • (C) Renan Barao vs. No. 4 TJ Dillashaw
    • No. 6 Takeya Mizugaki vs. No. 10 Francisco Rivera
    • Chris Holdsworth vs. Chico Camus

Flyweight

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    USA TODAY Sports

    Chris Cariaso and Kyoji Horiguchi picked up key wins in the flyweight division on Saturday.

    Edging Louis Smolka on the scorecards, Cariaso extended his winning streak to three fights. Meanwhile, Horiguchi remained undefeated inside the Octagon with a dominant victory over Darrell Montague during the UFC Fight Night 40 preliminary card.

    No 125-pounders will compete at UFC 173, but Demetrious Johnson's next title defense is coming up on June 14.

     

    Official UFC Flyweight Rankings

    Champion: Demetrious Johnson

    1. John Dodson 
    2. Joseph Benavidez 
    3. Ian McCall
    4. Ali Bagautinov (+1)
    5. John Moraga (-1) 
    6. Jussier Formiga 
    7. John Lineker
    8. Chris Cariaso (+2)  
    9. Zach Makovsky
    10. Tim Elliott (-2) 
    11. Brad Pickett   
    12. Louis Gaudinot    
    13. Dustin Ortiz   
    14. Kyoji Horiguchi (NR)
    15. Scott Jorgensen (-1) 

     

    Rankings Analysis

    Good Call

    Now that he is fighting for the title, Ali Bagautinov has a stronger resume than John Moraga. The Russian is 3-0 inside the Octagon, while Moraga nearly lost to No. 13 contender Dustin Ortiz in his most recent outing.

     

    Bad Call

    Cariaso has a solid winning streak going, but he shouldn't be ranked above Tim Elliott. While Cariaso has no wins over current Top 15 flyweights, Elliott comfortably defeated Louis Gaudinot in August 2013.

     

    Results and Upcoming Fights

    UFC Fight Night 40 Flyweight Fights

    • No. 8 Chris Cariaso defeated Louis Smolka by split decision.
    • No. 14 Kyoji Horiguchi defeated Darrell Montague by unanimous decision.

     

    UFC 173 Flyweight Fights

    • None

Women's Bantamweight

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    USA TODAY Sports

    The women's bantamweight division is in the midst of a break in action.

    No women fought at UFC Fight Night 40, and none will step into the Octagon at UFC 173.

    The next women's bantamweight contest will be held at UFC 174, where Germaine de Randamie will welcome Milana Dudieva to the Octagon. 

      

    Official UFC Women's Bantamweight Rankings

    Champion: Ronda Rousey

    1. Cat Zingano  
    2. Alexis Davis 
    3. Miesha Tate 
    4. Sara McMann 
    5. Sarah Kaufman 
    6. Jessica Eye 
    7. Liz Carmouche 
    8. Amanda Nunes 
    9. Jessica Andrade 
    10. Bethe Correia 
    11. Julianna Pena  
    12. Germaine de Randamie 
    13. Raquel Pennington 
    14. Jessamyn Duke 
    15. Jessica Rakoczy 

     

    Rankings Analysis

    Good Call

    No changes were made to the women's bantamweight rankings.

     

    Bad Call

    No changes were made to the women's bantamweight rankings.

     

    Results and Upcoming Fights

    UFC Fight Night 40 Women's Bantamweight Fights

    • None

     

    UFC 173 Women's Bantamweight Fights

    • None

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