|1||Georges St. Pierre||100||UFC||1|
|15||Jake Shields||30||Free Agent||17|
Rankings compiled by Richard Wade.
#1 Georges St Pierre dazzled few fans in his grinding decision win over #7 Dan Hardy at UFC 111. Even worse for the UFC, #3 Thiago Alves' health concerns forced the cancellation of his bout with #2 Jon Fitch and left the division still seeking a credible challenger. Those two will finally meet again at UFC 115 but the timing will leave GSP needing new challengers before they get their shot.
#4 Josh Koscheck's UFC 113 bout with #8 Paul "Semtex" Daley has clear title implications although few really expect the winner to give GSP a great deal of trouble. Doubters might want to think again about Koscheck's chances as physically he's a great match for GSP and if he can get his head around transitioning from the striking to the wrestling to the grappling phases of the bout he could potentially be a threat to the champ.
Ironically #15 Jake Shields (#3 middleweight) is probably the most anticipated challenger for GSP. He's done very well at middleweight for Strikeforce, beating the ranked Dan Henderson, Mayhem Miller and Robbie Lawler back-to-back-to-back. Expectations are high for Shields should he jump to the UFC and move back down to his natural 170lbs.
#5 Paulo Thiago is also being groomed as a contender. He'll have to beat #10 Martin Kampmann at UFC 115 to get it. Thiago has two nearly unique virtues as a challenger -- he hasn't lost to GSP before and he's not a one dimensional striker that GSP will just take down for a decision win.
#6 Nick Diaz will face MMA legend #35 Hayato "Mach" Sakurai at DREAM.14. No word on when Diaz will next fight in the States to defend his Strikeforce title.
Other than debunking some rumors about fighting #12 Matt Serra in April at a UFC Fight Night in Nashville that never materialized, #11 Mike Swick hasn't been heard from much since losing to Paulo Thiago at UFC 110.
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.