USAT/SBN November 2010 MMA Consensus Rankings: Lightweight

Rank Fighter Points Promotion Last Rank
1 Frank Edgar 349 UFC 1
2 Gilbert Melendez 317 Strikeforce 3
3 Gray Maynard 316 UFC 4
4 Shinya Aoki 294 DEEP 5
5 Eddie Alvarez 283 Bellator 6
6 Kenny Florian 277 UFC 7
7 B.J. Penn 271 UFC 2
8 Tatsuya Kawajiri 200 DREAM 8
9 Sean Sherk 197 UFC 9
10 George Sotiropoulos 187 UFC 10
11 Evan Dunham 183 UFC 11
12 Jim Miller 137 UFC 12
13 Ben Henderson 127 UFC 14
14 Takanori Gomi 113 UFC 13
15 Josh Thomson 92 Strikeforce 16
16 Mizuto Hirota 87 K-1 15
17 Joe Stevenson 78 UFC 17
18 Kurt Pellegrino 72 UFC 20
19 Gesias Cavalcante 60 Strikeforce 19
20 Clay Guida 57 UFC 22
21 Diego Sanchez 53 UFC 21
22 Nik Lentz 44 UFC NR
23 Satoru Kitaoka 41 Pancrase 26
24 Melvin Guillard 39 UFC 23
24 Tyson Griffin 39 UFC 18
24 Anthony Pettis 39 UFC 43

Rankings compiled by Richard Wade.

#7 B.J. Penn's crushing KO win over Matt Hughes at UFC 123 has Penn moving back up to 170lbs to finish out his career. This is the first time since Penn's career began that he hasn't loomed over the lightweight division.

We'll have to wait until UFC 125 to see if #1 Frank Edgar can keep #4 Gray Maynard from taking his belt. Then the winner will have to face the winner of WEC 53's title fight between #14 Ben Henderson and Anthony Pettis.

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Based on the premise that all MMA rankings are subjective but that it’s still useful and informative to know who the online MMA community as a whole ranks as the best fighters in MMA, we collect and average the rankings of the top MMA websites to produce our consensus rankings. We compile the top MMA rankings from each of our sources and award 25 points for a first place ranking, 16 for a 10th place ranking, 1 for a 25th place ranking. A formula is used to "normalize" the data so all fighters are awarded points from those lists that do not include a full 25 fighters. This formula ensures that each ranking site awards the same number of total points regardless of how many fighters they choose to rank. Each fighter’s total is divided by the number of possible points to determine their standing in the Consensus Rankings.

We are now moving to what JCS of Fight Matrix has described as assumed rankings in an attempt to rank fighters who move between weight classes. This has been the biggest problem with the consensus rankings and we believe this new methodology will rectify that.

Let's take Anderson Silva for instance. 87% (13 of 15) of our panelists have him at Light Heavyweight and 100% (15 of 15) at Middleweight. On the 13 ballots that ranked Silva at 205, we took the average (21.2). We then reduced that number by half the percentage of Light Heavyweight ballots that he was not included on. Say he's not on 30% of them, then we do a 15% penalty on the average that we found in the previous step. That number is then used instead of the usual "normalization number" to provide points from those not ranking the fighter in the weight class in question. This avoids fighters being excessively penalized by confusion about which weight class they belong.
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