Agree or disagree, these ranking were compiled in a completely unbiased manner based on several decisive contributing factors to the decision making process. There will be no delusional (hopefully) or political slants to these rankings.
The different factors taken into account when considering the placing of the various top ten listers included, among a variety of other variables:
A) Recent activity at the weight class. Basically the deciding factor was that if you have competed your last two fights or more at a given weight, that’s your division.
For example, Some are going to be upset to see that Hendo and Rich Franklin aren’t considered for 205 due to the fact that neither have competed at the weight class in two or more bouts. Although a case could be made for either man jumping right into the top ten as soon as they return to the weight.
A guy like Anderson Silva is going to be ranked in both the middleweight and light heavyweight divisions due to the fact that he consistently bounces back and forth between divisions.
B) Activity. I could make a very strong case for putting Tito Ortiz in the 205 top ten, but he hasn’t been fighting. Someone like Alistair Overeem that hasn’t fought in over ten months also takes a significant hit for not competing.
C) Level of competition faced in the past
D) Recent wins over top contenders
Like always, we invite you to post your own personal rankings, and agree or disagree with us in a loosely respectful manner in the comment section below.
1. Brian Bowles: The combination of his unblemished record and the way he handled longtime king of the bantamweight mountain, Miguel Torres, make a case for Bowles any lower than #1 a hard one to make.
2. Miguel Torres: One loss in his last eighteen fights isn’t going to drop Torres that far down in the bantamweight totem poll. Torres is without question one of the most gifted fighters currently competing in the sport.
3. Takeya Mizugaki: A recent win over Jeff Curran and more importantly, a majority decision loss to Miguel Torres that could have gone either way, make Mizugaki a handful for anyone he faces at 135 pounds in the future.
4. Dominick Cruz: Outside of a single defeat at the hands of Urijah Faber during WEC 26, Cruz has gone undefeated in his fifteen bout professional fighting career, with his most recent victory coming in the form of a unanimous decision over Joseph Benavidez at WEC 42.
5. Joseph Benavidez: With back to back wins over Danny Martinez and Jeff Curran in the WEC, Benavidez looked prime for his title shot before running into a wall in the form of Dominick Cruz at WEC 42.
6. Masakatsu Ueda: Although undefeated in twelve bouts, a draw against Marcos Galvao gives me a good measuring stick as to where Ueda is in the current 135 pound weight class. He could easily jump up in the ranks with a decisive win over anyone in the top ten.
7. Damacio Page: With his sole defeat in the last three years coming at the hands of WEC bantamweight champion Brian Bowles, Page has recently notched up wins over the likes of Scott Jorgensen and Marcos Galvao.
8. Rani Yahya: With his last defeat coming from Kid Yamamoto in 2007, Yahya has bounced back with three consecutive first round submission victories under the WEC banner.
9. Akitoshi Tamura: Recent wins over Rumina Sato and Manny Tapia have thrust this on and off Shooto veteran into the top ten.
10. Marcos Galvao: Although suffering defeats at the hands of Brian Bowles and Damacio Page, A victory over Fredson Paixao and a draw with the undefeated Masakatsu Ueda keep Galvao relevant at bantamweight.
Honorable Mentions: Mike Easton, Eddie Wineland, Scott Jorgensen, Manny Tapia, Antonio Banuelos