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Independent World MMA Rankings – September 17, 2010

By Zach Arnold | September 16, 2010

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From the office of the Independent World MMA Rankings

September 17, 2010 – The September 2010 Men’s Independent World MMA Rankings have been released. These rankings are independent of any single MMA media outlet or sanctioning body, and are published on multiple MMA web sites, as well as

Some of the best and most knowledgeable MMA writers from across the MMA media landscape have come together to form an independent voting panel. These voting panel members are, in alphabetical order: Zach Arnold (Fight Opinion); Nicholas Bailey (MMA Ratings); Jared Barnes (Freelance); Jordan Breen (Sherdog); Jim Genia (Full Contact Fighter and MMA Journalist Blog); Jesse Holland (MMA Mania); Robert Joyner (Freelance); Todd Martin (Los Angeles Times and Sherdog); Jim Murphy (The Savage Science); Zac Robinson (Sports by the Numbers MMA); Leland Roling (Bloody Elbow); Michael David Smith (AOL Fanhouse); Joshua Stein (MMA Opinion); and Dave Walsh (Head Kick Legend).

Note: Jake Shields, Jason Miller, and Paul Daley have each regained their eligibility to be ranked, because all of their disciplinary suspensions have expired.

Note: Nick Diaz is still not eligible to be ranked because his disciplinary suspension does not expire until September 23 (which is because it did not begin until June 23).

Note: Gilbert Melendez is still not eligible to be ranked because his disciplinary suspension does not expire until October 13 (which is because it did not begin until July 13).

Note: Due to the fact that his recent fights have been in the middleweight division, Jake Shields is eligible to be ranked exclusively in the middleweight division until he makes his return to welterweight. However, several individual voters chose not to rank Shields at middleweight because of the fact that his return to the welterweight division is just one month away.

September 2010 Men’s Independent World MMA Rankings
Ballots collected on September 14, 2010

Heavyweight Rankings (206 to 265 lbs.)
1. Brock Lesnar (5-1)
2. Fedor Emelianenko (31-2, 1 No Contest)
3. Fabricio Werdum (14-4-1)
4. Cain Velasquez (8-0)
5. Shane Carwin (12-1)
6. Junior dos Santos (12-1)
7. Alistair Overeem (33-11, 1 No Contest)
8. Frank Mir (13-5)
9. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (32-6-1, 1 No Contest)
10. Antonio Silva (14-2)

Light Heavyweight Rankings (186 to 205 lbs.)
1. Mauricio “Shogun” Rua (19-4)
2. Lyoto Machida (16-1)
3. Rashad Evans (15-1-1)
4. Quinton Jackson (30-8)
5. Forrest Griffin (17-6)
6. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (19-3)
7. Jon Jones (11-1)
8. Thiago Silva (14-2)
9. Gegard Mousasi (29-3-1)
10. Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante (10-2)

Middleweight Rankings (171 to 185 lbs.)
1. Anderson Silva (27-4)
2. Chael Sonnen (25-11-1)
3. Nathan Marquardt (30-9-2)
4. Vitor Belfort (19-8)
5. Demian Maia (13-2)
6. Jake Shields (25-4-1)
7. Dan Henderson (25-8)
8. Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza (13-2, 1 No Contest)
9. Yushin Okami (25-5)
10. Jorge Santiago (23-8)

Welterweight Rankings (156 to 170 lbs.)
1. Georges St. Pierre (20-2)
2. Jon Fitch (23-3, 1 No Contest)
3. Josh Koscheck (15-4)
4. Thiago Alves (17-7)
5. Dan Hardy (23-7, 1 No Contest)
6. Martin Kampmann (17-3)
7. Matt Hughes (45-7)
8. Paulo Thiago (13-2)
9. Paul Daley (25-9-2)
10. John Hathaway (14-0)

Lightweight Rankings (146 to 155 lbs.)
1. Frankie Edgar (13-1)
2. B.J. Penn (15-7-1)
3. Gray Maynard (10-0, 1 No Contest)
4. Eddie Alvarez (20-2)
5. Shinya Aoki (24-5, 1 No Contest)
6. Kenny Florian (13-5)
7. Tatsuya Kawajiri (26-6-2)
8. George Sotiropoulos (13-2)
9. Evan Dunham (11-0)
10. Ben Henderson (12-1)

Featherweight Rankings (136 to 145 lbs.)
1. Jose Aldo (17-1)
2. Manny Gamburyan (11-4)
3. Urijah Faber (23-4)
4. Mike Brown (23-6)
5. Bibiano Fernandes (8-2)
6. Hatsu Hioki (22-4-2)
7. Marlon Sandro (17-1)
8. Josh Grispi (14-1)
9. Michihiro Omigawa (11-8-1)
10. “Lion” Takeshi Inoue (18-4)

Bantamweight Rankings (126 to 135 lbs.)
1. Dominick Cruz (16-1)
2. Brian Bowles (8-1)
3. Joseph Benavidez (12-2)
4. Scott Jorgensen (11-3)
5. Miguel Torres (37-3)
6. Takeya Mizugaki (13-4-2)
7. Damacio Page (15-4)
8. Masakatsu Ueda (11-1-2)
9. Wagnney Fabiano (14-2)
10. Shuichiro Katsumura (11-7-3)

The Men’s Independent World MMA Rankings are tabulated on a monthly basis in each of the top seven weight classes of MMA, from heavyweight to bantamweight, with fighters receiving ten points for a first-place vote, nine points for a second-place vote, and so on.

The rankings are based purely on the votes of the members of the voting panel, with nobody’s vote counting more than anybody else’s vote, and no computerized voting.

The voters are instructed to vote primarily based on fighters’ actual accomplishments in the cage/ring (the quality of opposition that they’ve actually beaten), not based on a broad, subjective perception of which fighters would theoretically win hypothetical match-ups.

Inactivity: Fighters who have not fought in the past 12 months are not eligible to be ranked, and will regain their eligibility the next time they fight.

Disciplinary Suspensions: Fighters who are currently serving disciplinary suspensions, or who have been denied a license for drug test or disciplinary reasons, are not eligible to be ranked.

Changing Weight Classes: When a fighter announces that he is leaving one weight class in order to fight in another weight class, the fighter is not eligible to be ranked in the new weight class until his first fight in the new weight class has taken place.

Catch Weight Fights: When fights are contested at weights that are in between the limits of the various weight classes, they are considered to be in the higher weight class. The weight limits for each weight class are listed at the top of the rankings for each weight class.

Special thanks to Eric Kamander, Zach Arnold, and Joshua Stein for their invaluable help with this project, and special thanks to Garrett Bailey for designing our logo.

Topics: Media, MMA, Zach Arnold | 18 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

18 Responses to “Independent World MMA Rankings – September 17, 2010”

  1. David M says:

    I refuse to get worked up over the rankings. Serenity now.

  2. klown says:

    klown’s linear top 12 lists


    1. Werdum
    2. Emilianenko
    3. Lesnar
    4. Carwin
    5. Mir
    6. Velasquez
    7. Nogueira
    8. Couture
    9. Sylvia
    10. Overeem
    11. Rogers
    12. Silva


    1. Rua
    2. Machida
    3. Evans
    4. A. Silva
    5. Griffin
    6. Jackson
    7. Henderson
    8. Franklin
    9. Liddell
    10. W.Silva
    11. T.Silva
    12. Bader


    1. Silva
    2. Belfort
    3. Shields
    4. Henderson
    5. Sonnen
    6. Okami
    7. Sakara
    8. Horwich
    9. Leites
    10. Marquardt
    11. Maia
    12. Souza


    1. St-Pierre
    2. Fitch
    3. Alves
    4. Hughes
    5. Serra
    6. Kampmann
    7. Thiago
    8. Koscheck
    9. Hathaway
    10. Sanchez
    11. Parisyan
    12. Shields

  3. 45 Huddle says:

    Fedor fanboys in the MMA Media are having a tough time gripping a concept called reality.

  4. edub says:

    I think I finally got to Alan’s level. I in no way care at all what these rankings say, and that goes for all the other sites too. Too many supposed “policies” that are supposed to get followed making these that it seems common sense got thrown out the window.

    • 45 Huddle says:

      If anything, these rankings serve no purpose except to get up page views.

      I think if a website like Sherdog went out and did UFC and Strikeforce only rankings, it would actually have value to it.

      The UFC has a large pool of talent that only fights each other. Ranking them would give a good point of discussion for who is in line next for title shots, who deserves to fight who, and so on. I think putting non-UFC fighters into those rankings gets in the way of those actually value added debates.

      At the same time, Strikeforce has positioned themselves as the #2 organization in MMA. And if you aren’t fighting in Strikeforce or the UFC, you really aren’t much on the radar of the sport. Sure, people watch Bellator, but they will be out of business soon and their talent will likely go to the UFC or Strikeforce. And a lot of the talent in Japan still fights in Strikeforce. So that is my long winded way of saying that Strikeforce should have a rankings too.

      If somebody did those monthly, I could seriously get behind not only the rankings, but the discussion of the rankings as well.

      • 45 Huddle says:

        Take for example Heavyweight….

        UFC Champion – Brock Lesnar
        1. Cain Velasquez
        2. Shane Carwin
        3. Junior Dos Santos
        4. Frank Mir
        5. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira
        6. Roy Nelson
        7. Cheick Kongo
        8. Gabriel Gonzaga
        9. Mirko Filipovic
        10. Ben Rothwell

        Strikeforce Champion – Alistair Overeem
        1. Fabricio Werdum
        2. Fedor Emelianenko
        3. Antonio Silva
        4. Brett Rogers
        5. Andrei Arlovski
        6. Josh Barnett
        7. Shane Del Rosario
        8. Daniel Cormier
        9. Lavar Johnson
        10. Chag Griggs

        I know my rankings aren’t perfect. And there is room for debate. But it’s much easier to have a logic based discussion on each of these rankings. And then they can be used to discuss who is next in line for a title fight. It can also be used to create conversation if one fighter is being passed over or not being given the proper fights to get to a title shot.

        The way the rankings are done now, they have no purpose in the MMA Landscape.

        On a side note, it a sad sign when guys like Griggs & Rothwell are #11 in their respective weight classes in their organizations. Shows how weak Heavyweight is overall….

        One more example…. Light Heavyweight

        UFC Champion – Mauricio Rua
        1. Lyoto Machida
        2. Rashad Evans
        3. Quinton Jackson
        4. Forrest Griffin
        5. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
        6. Rich Franklin
        7. Jon Jones
        8. Ryan Bader
        9. Jason Brilz
        10. Thiago Silva

        Strikeforce Champion – Rafael Cavalcante
        1. Muhammed Lawal
        2. Gegard Mousasi
        3. Mike Kyle
        4. Dan Henderson
        5. Renato Sobral
        6. Roger Gracie
        7. Ron Humphrey

        Not sure who after that, but you get the point.

      • Jonathan says:

        I agree 10,000% with your first sentence. No one should get too worked up or assume too much based on these rankings.

  5. skwirrl says:

    The only one that irks me is a known roider, (and now greaser), in Marquardt is at 3.

  6. hlamnenada says:

    Huddle, I see you’re still at it. I hope everyone realizes that rankings don’t translate to who would win in a fight or who is a better fighter. Only the betting lines before the fight reveal of who the better of the two fighters are. If the # 4 fought #6 and #6 was the favorite on the betting lines then #6 is considered the better fighter.

    Lesnar is ranked higher than Carwin, but if a rematch occurs will he still be the favorite on the betting lines? It would be interesting to see.

    Since Fedor would still be the favorite on the betting lines against any fighter during his next fight, Fedor is still considered the best fighter.

    Agreed? Disagreed?

  7. edub says:

    I don’t think Fedor would be favored in his next fight if he fought the winner of Lensar-Velasquez, or Shane Carwin. Overeem would probably be pretty close too.

  8. Zack says:

    I cant think of a time in modern MMA history where the 205lb division has been less interesting.

    • I honestly don’t see why it isn’t interesting. There isn’t any one guy who looks to be permanently dominant at the top of the division, yeah, but there’s a lot of good fights to be made and a single, universal, clear champion. Not to mention that all the top contenders are fighting one another and the best prospect in the division is getting slowly built up into title contention.

  9. robthom says:

    Looks pretty fair.

    A few guys are better then the guys ahead of them IMO, like four of the 5 guys behind Forrest, but then they haven’t had the opportunity to get the proper wins on record to prove it yet.

    So its fair, and thats all it needs to be.

    (And thats can also be called pretty good compared to a lot of other lists).

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