MMA: The Best Of The Best From Each Division

Nick ColonSenior Analyst IJuly 9, 2008

Many MMA fans always speculate about who seems to be the best fighters in all of today's divisions.

From Bantamweight all the way to Heavyweight (and beyond at times), speculation is the most commonly used trait in an MMA fans life.  Whether something will or will not happen is always the question.  Then afterwards, fans tend to explain why they were right or wrong.

Well, seeing how MMA is in a world of rapid parody, it seems only natural that today's best will be tomorrow's worst, and so forth.  Yet, it is so fun and typical that fans continue to speculate on situations at hand.  So I figure if they can, then what the heck, why can't I?

I have put together a list of top fighters in each division from 135 lbs. to 265 lbs. (sorry obese and anorexic fighters).  I have also put together a list of their number one contenders in each division.

Please remember...and I should have put this at the beginning of the article, that this list is my opinions.  We all have ours, and your welcome to share it, but no comments such as, "This list is stupid," or "You're an idiot for saying that," will be tolerated.  I'll mark it as offensive, and that'll be that.  I'm looking for educated opinions, and backed up comments.  If there's no proof for your comment, why say it?

I hope you enjoy, and continue to post.



Best: Miguel Torres

#1 Contender: Masakatsu Ueda

Huge discrepancy here.  I believe that Torres is the future of this division.  With one heck of a win, and only one loss in his 34 professional fights, don't expect Torres to walk around without a belt gracing his shoulder anytime soon.



Best: Urijah Faber

#1 Contender: Norifumi "Kid" Yamamoto/Leonard Garcia

This division is pretty deep at the moment, and it seems as though Faber has run through all of his opponents.  However, two men that may be able to climb Mount Faber is listed as Co-#1 Contenders.  Yamamoto is probably the better overall fighter of the two, however Garcia is the more dangerous to Faber for many reasons.  Garcia is way more likely to fight Faber, as he fights in the same promotion, and secondly because Yamamoto's striking is not half as good as Garcia, and Faber's submission defense is stellar.  Great matchups to come.



Best: BJ Penn

#1 Contender: Shinya Aoki

A matchup between these two is highly unlikely, and nearly impossible as they do not fight under the same promotion.  For non-MMA fans, the UFC promotion does not wish for their fighters to fight under another organizations' heading while still under contract, hence the issues with Randy Couture and Fedor Emelianenko.  No doubt this would be a submission clash between the two, with Penn getting the better of it in my opinion.



Best: George St. Pierre

#1 Contender: BJ Penn/Jon Fitch

Since BJ's move up, this'll put him right in there with other guys at that weight.  Don't get me wrong, there's a chance Fitch puts GSP on the ropes, but I think we'll see a Penn vs GSP II matchup by either the end of this year or early '09.



Best: Anderson Silva

#1 Contender: Paulo Filho/Yushin Okami

I have only two problems with Paulo Filho...sorry better make that three.  1) His outside of the octagon troubles.  2) His unwillingness to fight his friend and partner. 3) His lack of motivation in the octagon.  He was losing badly to Chael Sonnen prior to pulling out an armbar that is still questionable, and I don't know if cares about the sport.  With Okami, he's a little boring at times, but like Machida, he's in line for a title shot soon.  Watch out Anderson.  He may creep up on you with all your LHW talk.



Best: Forrest Griffin

#1 Contender: Winner of Liddell/Evans

This is a deep division.  I can easily name five guys off the top of my head that could fill in the number one contendership spot, but this seems like the most likely matchup next for Forrest.  To be quite honest, I am still on the Thiago Silva wagon until someone shows me they can beat him.



Best: Fedor Emelianenko

#1 Contender: Randy Couture

Patience is a virtue, but for how long?  MMA fans will breathe a long hard sigh out when this matchup is finally inked.  Until then?  July 19th...