The pound-for-pound ranking in MMA is generally seen as the strangest of the traditional ranking areas, simple because everyone has a different definition for it. Because it's entirely mythical and there's no data to use, opinions vary wildly. When you take that and throw in the predicaments of the former top two consensus guys, things get even more hairy. And that's where the SB Nation MMA rankings panel comes in. Take a gander at how we see things below.
As usual, our panel consists of two members from each of the three SB Nation MMA sites - Ariel Helwani and Dave Doyle from MMA Fighting; Thomas Myers and Alex Giardini from MMA Mania; and finally, Dallas Winston and yours truly from Bloody Elbow.
(Official SB Nation rankings policy: Fighters under commission or company suspensions are ineligible to be ranked during the duration of their suspension or if they have licensing issues. At the moment, this does not currently affect any P4P fighters generally considered to be Top-10 caliber).
Obviously things have been thrown for a loop with Georges St-Pierre's indefinite leave and Anderson Silva's second straight loss to Chris Weidman (via injury). Taking over the top spot is light heavyweight champion Jon Jones, with featherweight champ Jose Aldo securing the second spot. Following him is heavyweight champ Cain Velasquez at three, with Weidman tied for four with flyweight champ Demetrious Johnson. Johnson would have been ahead of him if it weren't for one low ranking.
Things get a little skewed after that. Interim bantamweight champ Renan Barao sits at six, but received votes all the way from three to eight. Silva dropped to seven overall, but got votes all the way from two through nine. We all basically had lightweight champ Anthony Pettis in the the same area and he fell in at the eight spot. And two non-champions, Johny Hendricks and Vitor Belfort took the nine and ten spots.
Upcoming matchups for ranked fighters