Post-UFC 123: Ranking the UFC's Top 10 Welterweights

Sean SmithAnalyst INovember 22, 2010

Post-UFC 123: Ranking the UFC's Top 10 Welterweights

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    After back-to-back losses at lightweight, nobody knew what B.J. Penn would show up against Matt Hughes.

    Well, the Penn that came to fight at UFC 123 appeared to be a top welterweight contender as he quickly disposed of Matt Hughes.

    Now, let's see where Penn stacks up against some of the other top contenders in the division.

10. Dennis Hallman

1 of 10

    Last Fight: Win vs. Karo Parisyan

    Next Fight: TBA

    After a deflating loss to John Howard, Dennis Hallman has put together two impressive victories against Ben Saunders and Karo Parisyan.

    Look for Hallman to receive a fight against another rising contender for his next fight.

9. Jake Ellenberger

2 of 10

    Last Fight: Win vs. John Howard

    Next Fight: TBA

    Jake Ellenberger was scheduled to fight Jon Fitch, a fight that would have been an excellent opportunity for Ellenberger to make a name for himself.

    However, with Fitch now scheduled to fight B.J. Penn, Ellenberger will await word on who his next opponent will be.

8. B.J. Penn

3 of 10

    Last Fight: Win vs. Matt Hughes

    Next Fight: vs. Jon Fitch @ UFC 127

    If B.J. Penn is able to defeat Jon Fitch at UFC 127, he could be on the verge of a welterweight title shot.

    It would be quite a quick turnaround for a Penn, who appeared to be on the decline after back-to-back losses to Frankie Edgar.

7. Carlos Condit

4 of 10

    Last Fight: Win vs. Dan Hardy

    Next Fight: vs. Chris Lytle @ UFC 127

    After knocking out Dan Hardy in front of all of London, Carlos Condit will now face Chris Lytle in a fight that will likely set one fighter up for a top five opponent.

    Condit is 11-1 in his last twelve fights, with the lone loss being a split decision against Martin Kampmann.

6. Martin Kampmann

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    Last Fight: Loss vs. Jake Shields

    Next Fight: TBA

    Some people thought that Martin Kampmann would just be a tune-up fight for Jake Shields' title shot. Those people quickly discovered why Kampmann is one of the most underrated welterweights in the world, as Kampmann gave Shields all he could handle.

    Very seldom does a loss improve public opinion of a fighter, but that was certainly the case in Kampmann's loss to Shields.

5. Jake Shields

6 of 10

    Last Fight: Win vs. Martin Kampmann

    Next Fight: TBA

    While it wasn't the performance most people expected, Jake Shields' win over Martin Kampmann earned him a title shot against the winner of Georges St. Pierre vs. Josh Koscheck.

    If wants to become the UFC Middleweight Champion, Shields will have to manage his weight cut better for his next fight.

     

4. Josh Koscheck

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    Last Fight: Win vs. Paul Daley

    Next Fight: vs. Georges St. Pierre @ UFC 124

    As we watch Koscheck losing as a coach to St. Pierre on The Ultimate Fighter, the former NCAA wrestling champion is preparing to beat St. Pierre in the octagon.

    The fight will be a rematch of a fight that St. Pierre won three years ago. If Koscheck doesn't switch up his game plan from that first fight, he can expect his coaching losses to carry over into the octagon.

3. Thiago Alves

8 of 10

    Last Fight: Loss vs. Jon Fitch

    Next Fight: vs. John Howard @ UFC 124

    It has been more than two years since we have seen Alves win a fight, but it is hard to penalize him for that when his only two fights in that time span have been against Fitch and St. Pierre.

    After some discussion on whether he should move to middleweight, Alves will remain at welterweight to take on Howard at UFC 124. Let's hope Alves makes weight this time.

2. Jon Fitch

9 of 10

    Last Fight: Win vs. Thiago Alves

    Next Fight: vs. B.J. Penn @ UFC 127

    Originally slated to fight Jake Ellenberger, Jon Fitch will now fight B.J. Penn at UFC 127.

    Fitch certainly deserves top opponents, and Penn is a much bigger name in MMA. However, with bigger names comes tougher competition. If Fitch loses to Penn, it could mean a move to middleweight.

1. Georges St. Pierre

10 of 10

    Last Fight: Win vs. Dan Hardy (Unanimous decision)

    Next Fight: vs. Josh Koscheck @ UFC 124

    With seven straight wins and an overall record of 20-2, St. Pierre is making a case to be the greatest fighter of all time. Koscheck will be the next obstacle in the way of St. Pierre achieving that distinction.

    If St. Pierre is able to defeat Koscheck, a fight with Shields could be on the horizon. A win in a fight with Anderson Silva somewhere down the line could cement St. Pierre as the best ever.