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USAT/SBN May MMA Consensus Rankings: Welterweight

Rank Fighter Points Promotion Last Rank
1 Georges St. Pierre 375 UFC 1
2 Jon Fitch 357 UFC 2
3 Thiago Alves 342 UFC 3
4 Josh Koscheck 318 UFC 4
5 Paulo Thiago 311 UFC 5
6 Dan Hardy 286 UFC 7
7 Nick Diaz 280 Strikeforce 6
8 Paul Daley 251 Impact FC 8
9 Matt Hughes 246 UFC 9
10 Jake Shields 187 Free Agent 15
11 Martin Kampmann 180 UFC 10
12 Jay Hieron 139 Strikeforce 12
12 Matt Serra 139 UFC 12
14 Mike Swick 132 UFC 11
14 Carlos Condit 132 UFC 14
16 Dan Hornbuckle 111 Bellator 15
17 Marius Zaromskis 105 DREAM/Strikeforce 17
18 Mike Pierce 85 UFC 18
19 Anthony Johnson 83 UFC 19
20 Akihiro Gono 70 WVR 20
21 Jake Ellenberger 67 UFC 21
22 Ricardo Almeida 62 UFC 22
23 John Howard 53 UFC 23
24 Chris Lytle 49 UFC 24
25 Ben Saunders 43 UFC 25

Rankings compiled by Richard Wade.

# 1 Georges St Pierre remains atop the welterweight division. From his lofty perch he awaits #4 Josh Koscheck. They'll coach The Ultimate Fighter together before facing off in a title fight at the end of the year.

Hopefully nothing goes wrong with this plan. I hate to think we'd only see GSP fight once this year.

#2 Jon Fitch and #3 Thiago Alves will finally face off at UFC 117. The winner will presumably get a title shot. It's very unlikely, but part of me hopes that Fitch and Koscheck both win just to force them to fight. 

No word on what's next for #6 Dan Hardy. At least he managed to lose gracefully, unlike teammate #8 Paul Daley who got himself cut from the UFC for his post-fight cheap shot on Koscheck at UFC 113. Daley's exile begins in Australia at Impact FC in July.

#7 Nick Diaz will face MMA legend Hayato "Mach" Sakurai this weekend at DREAM.14. No word on whether he'll be suspended for his brawl with Mayhem Miller at Strikeforce on CBS.

#9 Matt Hughes will fight #22 Ricardo Almeida, a pupil of Hughes' UFC 112 opponent Renzo Gracie at UFC at UFC 117. Presumably a win for Almeida would propel him into title contention.

#10 Jake Shields owes his relatively low welterweight ranking to the fact that he hasn't fought in the division since 2008. If he does sign with the UFC as many expect, he'll likely be on the quick track for a title shot. 


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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