Stock Up, Stock Down: Pound-for-Pound Rankings After UFC 277

Tom Taylor@@TomTayMMAContributor IJuly 31, 2022

Stock Up, Stock Down: Pound-for-Pound Rankings After UFC 277

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    Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

    UFC 277 has come and gone, which means it's time for another update to B/R's pound-for-pound UFC rankings.

    The card, which went down Saturday night in Dallas, was headlined by a women's bantamweight title fight between Julianna Pena and Amanda Nunes. Pena was defending the belt after winning it from Nunes in one of the biggest upsets ever last December, but things didn't go her way the second time around, as Nunes walloped her to a unanimous-decision win to reclaim the title and restore order to the weight class.

    UFC 277 was co-headlined by an interim flyweight title fight between former champ Brandon Moreno and Israel Adesanya stablemate Kai Kara-France. Kara-France had his moments in the fight, but the win and the belt ultimately went to Moreno, who ended things with a body shot in Round 3.

    Those were the only fights on the UFC 277 bill involving fighters anywhere near the pound-for-pound conversation, but they were more than enough to change our rankings a bit.

    Keep scrolling to see where everyone has landed after the card.

Men: Nos. 10-6

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    Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC

    10. Aljamain Sterling

    9. Deiveson Figueiredo

    8. Dustin Poirier

    7. Stipe Miocic

    6. Max Holloway

    Brandon Moreno's UFC 277 interim flyweight title win was not enough to earn him a spot on our men's pound-for-pound list. As impressive as his stoppage of Kara-France was, the New Zealander isn't quite the level of opponent the Mexican star needed to beat to displace the likes of bantamweight champ Aljamain Sterling, or Deiveson Figueiredo, the flyweight division's undisputed champ, on our list.

    But if Moreno defeats Figueiredo in their yet-unscheduled flyweight title unification fight, you can definitely expect to see him in our rankings. He's beaten the Brazilian before, and despite losing their most recent encounter, he can definitely do so again.

Men: Nos. 5-1

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    Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC

    5. Charles Oliveira

    4. Francis Ngannou

    3. Israel Adesanya

    2. Alexander Volkanovski

    1. Kamaru Usman

    The top half of our men's pound-for-pound rankings are unchanged after UFC 277, but there could be some huge changes before the month is out.

    Welterweight champion Kamaru Usman is slated to defend his title against Leon Edwards in the main event of UFC 278 on August 20. If he wins, he will reaffirm his status as the sport's pound-for-pound king. But if he loses—as unlikely as that may be—it will send a shockwave through our rankings.

    So too could the main event of UFC 280 on October 22, which will see Charles Oliveira, our No. 5 fighter, battle Islam Makhachev for the vacant lightweight strap. In fact, that fight is likely to have an effect on this list no matter who wins.

Women: Nos. 10-6

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    Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC

    10. Holly Holm

    9. Ketlen Vieira

    8. Marina Rodriguez

    7. Julianna Pena

    6. Jessica Andrade

    There's only been one change to the back half of our women's pound-for-pound rankings, but it's a pretty significant one. After losing the women's bantamweight title to Amanda Nunes in the UFC 277 main event, Julianna Pena has tumbled from the top five and landed at No. 7.

    It could be a while before we see more changes to this segment of our rankings. Other than strawweight contender Marina Rodriguez, who is slated to fight Amanda Lemos at UFC 280 on October 22, none of the women listed above currently have fights booked.

Women: Nos. 5-1

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    Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC

    5. Carla Esparza

    4. Zhang Weili

    3. Rose Namajunas

    2. Amanda Nunes

    1. Valentina Shevchenko

    Amanda Nunes is once again a two-division champion, having reclaimed the bantamweight title from Julianna Pena in the UFC 277 main event. Her win restored some order to our pound-for-pound rankings, which have been in shambles since she lost the belt to Pena last year.

    But it didn't actually change her position on our list. After the win, Nunes is still ranked No. 2, behind flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko. Like most outlets, including the UFC, we still had her ranked ahead of Pena heading into UFC 277 because she has done far more to warrant pound-for-pound consideration than her rival—despite the outcome of their first fight.

    Her UFC 277 win affirmed that this was the right decision, but it was not enough to move her ahead of Shevchenko, who has not lost since a controversial decision setback against Nunes in 2017.

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