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411 MMA Rankings 01.14.14: Pound for Pound
Posted by Jonathan Solomon on 01.14.2014





What a difference a year makes!

For the first time in the many years that we have been compiling data and churning out the 411 MMA Rankings, there's no St. Pierre or Silva near the top of the POUND FOR POUND edition. There's a weird feeling when I look up and down the list and I'll assume a similar thought will cross your minds when you scroll down. Instead of either of those legendary all-time greats, we had to decide who takes those newly opened spots. Sure, Jon Jones is a deserving choice to be named the best all-round fighter in the sport, but what next?

Cain Velasquez is the poster boy of the heavyweight division, but he practically spends more time on the operating table than he does inside the octagon. The same goes for lightweight star Anthony Pettis. Neither of those outstanding fighters will see action until the fall most likely.

Renan Barao and Demetrious Johnson have been dominant atop the bantamweight and flyweight divisions, respectively. But, can we all look past the fact that they're the smallest fighters on this list (well, maybe that designation goes to Ronda Rousey who does nothing but kick ass, period)?

Of course, there's Jose Aldo, now the longest reigning champion in the sport. He's next going to defend the featherweight crown on Superbowl Saturday next month, against Ricardo Lamas. While we can all go back and forth about the quality of opponents he's faced over the years, his reign of near perfection is not the norm.

But, wait. What about Chris Weidman?! You cannot forget about him, can you? The history books will always point to him as the man who ended the historic run Anderson Silva was on.

How in the world do you make sense of all those names and the pound-for-pound rankings to kick of 2014? That's our goal today, so thanks for reading!


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Rankings From One Year Ago
10.30.12


1. Anderson Silva

2. Jon Jones

3. Georges St. Pierre

4. Jose Aldo

5. Junior dos Santos

6. Benson Henderson

7. Demetrious Johnson

8. Carlos Condit

9. Frankie Edgar

10. Gilbert Melendez

11. Dan Henderson

12. Cain Velasquez

13. Renan Barao

14. Rashad Evans

15. John Dodson






411's MMA Ranking Rules

- Which fighters are eligible for these rankings? They must meet the following qualifications: fight at least once in the past 365 days or if they have not, be officially scheduled for an upcoming fight.

- A fighter serving a disciplinary suspension will not be ranked. They can return when they have served their suspension or in the event it is rescinded. This includes fighters who may disregard their suspension locally to fight overseas.

- If a fighter appears on just one single ballot, and in the top ten, five points will be deducted to balance between other fighters who may be ranked lower, but appear on a greater amount of ballots.

- Want to complain about a fighter's ranking in the comments section? Please include an objective reason why you despise the list, and try your best to bring the rest of us to your way of thinking.





411's MMA Rankings


Pound For Pound



1) Jon "Bones" Jones (19-1)


Height: 6'4

Birthday: July 19, 1987

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Alexander Gustafsson - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 165: Jones vs. Gustafsson - September 21, 2013

- vs. Chael Sonnen - Win via TKO (strikes) - UFC 159: Jones vs. Sonnen - April 27, 2013

- vs. Vitor Belfort - Win via submission (americana) - UFC 152: Jones vs. Belfort - September 22, 2012

- vs. Rashad Evans - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 145: Jones vs. Evans - April 21, 2012

- vs. Lyoto Machida - Win via submission (guillotine choke) - UFC 140: Jones vs. Machida - December 10, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. Glover Teixeira - UFC 172: Jones vs. Teixeira - April 26, 2014

Comment: As Jon's brother Chandler prepares to play in the NFL's AFC Championship game on Sunday with the New England Patriots, the UFC's light heavyweight champion has his eyes set on his next challenger: Glover Teixeira.




2) Jose Aldo (23-1)


Height: 5'7

Birthday: September 9, 1986

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Chan Sung Jung - WIn via TKO (strikes) - UFC 163: Aldo vs. Korean Zombie - August 3, 2013

- vs. Frankie Edgar - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 156: Aldo vs. Edgar - February 2, 2013

- vs. Chad Mendes - Win via KO (knee) - UFC 142: Aldo vs. Mendes - January 14, 2012

- vs. Kenny Florian - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 136: Edgar vs. Maynard 3 - October 8, 2011

- vs. Mark Hominick - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 129: St. Pierre vs. Shields - April 29, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. Ricardo Lamas - UFC 169: Cruz vs. Barao - February 1, 2014





3) Demetrious "Mighty Mouse" Johnson (19-2-1)


Height: 5'3

Birthday: August 13, 1986

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Joseph Benavidez - Win via KO (punch) - UFC on Fox: Johnson vs. Benavidez 2 - December 14, 2013

- vs. John Moraga - Win via submission (armbar) - UFC on Fox 8: Johnson vs. Moraga - July 27, 2013

- vs. John Dodson - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC on Fox 6: Johnson vs. Dodson - January 26, 2013

- vs. Joseph Benavidez - Win via decision (split) - UFC 152: Jones vs. Belfort - September 22, 2012

- vs. Ian McCall - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC on FX: Johnson vs. McCall - June 8, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown

Comment: Look who shoots up our rankings in wake of all the changes and quite simply, a tremendous 2013!

In the main event of the last UFC on FOX show, Johnson left no question as to whether he was still the best flyweight in the world. In fact, you'd be hard pressed to point to three or four better overall fighters, period. He knocked out Joseph Benavidez quickly into their fight and closed his 2013 with arguably the most impressive showing of his career.





4) Cain Velasquez (13-1)


Height: 6'2

Birthday: July 28, 1982

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Junior dos Santos - Win via TKO (strikes)- UFC 166: Velasquez vs. dos Santos 3 - October 19, 2013

- vs. Antonio Silva - Win via TKO (strikes) - UFC 160: JDS vs. Velasquez 2 - May 25, 2013

- vs. Junior dos Santos - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 155: dos Santos vs. Velasquez 2 - December 29, 2012

- vs. Antonio Silva - Win via TKO (strikes) - UFC 146: dos Santos vs. Mir - May 26, 2012

- vs. Junior dos Santos - Loss via TKO (strikes) - UFC on Fox: Velasquez vs. dos Santos - November 12, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown




5) Renan Barao (31-1)


Height: 5'6

Birthday: February 27, 1987

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Eddie Wineland - Win via TKO (spinning kick) - UFC 165: Jones vs. Gustafsson - September 21, 2013

- vs. Mike McDonald - Win via submission (arm triangle choke) - UFC on Fuel: Barao vs. McDonald - February 16, 2013

- vs. Urijah Faber - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 149: Faber vs. Barao - July 21, 2012

- vs. Scott Jorgensen - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 143: Diaz vs. Condit - February 4, 2012

- vs. Brad Pickett - Win via submission (rear naked choke) - UFC 138: Leben vs. Munoz - November 5, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. Urijah Faber - UFC 169: Barao vs. Faber - February 1, 2014

Comment: The new undisputed bantamweight champion, Barao will make his first defense of that title in about three weeks against Urijah Faber. It's a rematch of their summer 2012 fight that was not all that hotly contested, so most are expecting a repeat in Las Vegas.



6) "Showtime" Anthony Pettis (16-2)


Height: 5'9

Birthday: January 27, 1987

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Benson Henderson - Win via submission (armbar) - UFC 164: Henderson vs. Pettis 2 - August 31, 2013

- vs. Donald Cerrone - Win via TKO (liver kick) - UFC on Fox: Johnson vs. Dodson - January 26, 2013

- vs. Joe Lauzon - Win via KO (head kick) - UFC 144: Edgar vs. Henderson - February 25, 2012

- vs. Jeremy Stephens - Win via decision (split) - UFC 136: Edgar vs. Maynard 3 - October 8, 2011

- vs. Clay Guida - Loss via decision (unanimous) - TUF 13 Finale - June 4, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown




7) Chris Weidman (11-0)


Height: 6'2

Birthday: June 17, 1984

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Anderson Silva - Win via TKO (fractured leg) - UFC 168: Weidman vs. Silva 2 - December 28, 2013

- vs. Anderson Silva - Win via KO (punches) - UFC 162: Silva vs. Weidman - July 6, 2013

- vs. Mark Munoz - Win via KO (elbow and punches) - UFC on Fuel: Munoz vs. Weidman - July 11, 2012

- vs. Demian Maia - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC on Fox 2: Evans vs. Davis - January 28, 2012

- vs. Tom Lawlor - Win via technical submission (D'arce choke) - UFC 139: Shogun vs. Henderson - November 19, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. Vitor Belfort - UFC - TBA

Comment: The champ is here! Chris Weidman did it again to close 2013, finishing Anderson Silva. Granted, their rematch ended due to an injury after Weidman checked the legend's kick, but a win is a win. Up next, Chris will train to defend the middleweight title against Vitor Belfort. No date has been set, but look for the bout to take place in the United States.

However, Weidman can only muster up enough support to come in at #7 this month. Clearly, the unique circumstances of his two wins over Silva have caused some of our writers to show some pause when looking at him among the best pound-for-pound. Do you feel the same?




8) Anderson Silva (33-6)


Height: 6'2

Birthday: April 14, 1975

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Chris Weidman - Loss via TKO (fractured leg) - UFC 168: Weidman vs. Silva 2 - December 28, 2013

- vs. Chris Weidman - Loss via KO (punches) - UFC 162: Silva vs. Weidman - July 6, 2013

- vs. Stephan Bonnar - Win via TKO (knee and punches) - UFC 153: Silva vs. Bonnar - October 13, 2012

- vs. Chael Sonnen - Win via TKO (knee and punches) - UFC 148: Silva vs. Sonnen - July 7, 2012

- vs. Yushin Okami - Win via TKO (punches) - UFC 134: Silva vs. Okami - August 27, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown

Comment: Silva is on the mend following surgery to repair his broken leg. We've heard talk about just exactly when he can expect to return to training to when he may be able to begin working with kicks again. The likelihood is we will not see "The Spider" compete until 2015, but it does appear as though retirement is not on his mind.




9) Ronda "Rowdy" Rousey (8-0)


Height: 5'6

Birthday: February 1, 1987

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Miesha Tate - Win via submission (armbar) - UFC 168: Weidman vs. Silva 2 - December 28, 2013

- vs. Liz Carmouche - Win via submission (armbar) - UFC 157: Rousey vs. Carmouche - February 23, 2013

- vs. Sarah Kaufman - Win via submission (armbar) - Strikeforce: Rousey vs. Kaufman - August 18, 2012

- vs. Miesha Tate - Win via submission (armbar) - Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey - March 3, 2012

- vs. Julia Budd - Win via submission (armbar) - Strikeforce Challengers 20 - November 18, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. Sara McMann - UFC 170: Rousey vs. McMann - February 22, 2014

Comment: Rousey outclassed Miesha Tate in their rematch last month and despite taking three rounds, she ultimately finished her (again) via armbar. Now, Ronda has already signed to return to the octagon to fight U.S. silver medalist Olympic wrestler Sara McMann in about six weeks.




10) Urijah Faber (30-6)


Height: 5'6

Birthday: May 14, 1979

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Michael McDonald - Win via submission (guillotine choke) - UFC on Fox: Johnson vs. Benavidez 2 - December 14, 2013

- vs. Yuri Alcantara - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC Fight Night: Shogun vs. Sonnen - August 17, 2013

- vs. Scott Jorgensen - Win via submission (rear naked choke) - UFC TUF 17 Finale - April 13, 2013

- vs. Ivan Menjivar - Win via submission (standing rear naked choke) - UFC 157: Rousey vs. Carmouche - February 23, 2013

- vs. Renan Barao - Loss via decision (unanimous) - UFC 149: Faber vs. Barao - July 21, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. Renan Barao - UFC 169: Barao vs. Faber - February 1, 2014




11) Benson Henderson (18-3)


Height: 5'9

Birthday: November 16, 1983

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Anthony Pettis - Loss via submission (armbar) - UFC 164: Henderson vs. Pettis 2 - August 31, 2013

- vs. Gilbert Melendez - Win via decision (split) - UFC on Fox: Henderson vs. Melendez - April 20, 2013

- vs. Nate Diaz - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC on Fox 5: Henderson vs. Diaz - December 8, 2012

- vs. Frankie Edgar - Win via decision (split) - UFC 150: Henderson vs. Edgar 2 - August 11, 2012

- vs. Frankie Edgar - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 144: Edgar vs. Henderson - February 26, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. Josh Thomson - UFC on Fox: Henderson vs. Thomson - January 25, 2014

Comment: Just 11 days remain until this awesome main event on FOX transpires with Bendo and The Punk squaring off to determine the next number one contender in the lightweight division.




12) Frankie Edgar (16-4-1)


Height: 5'6

Birthday: October 16, 1981

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Charles Oliveira - WIn via decision (unanimous) - UFC 162: Silva vs. Weidman - July 6, 2013

- vs. Jose Aldo - Loss via decision (unanimous) - UFC 156: Aldo vs. Edgar - February 2, 2013

- vs. Ben Henderson - Loss via decision (split) - UFC 150: Henderson vs. Edgar 2 - August 11, 2012

- vs. Ben Henderson - Loss via decision (unanimous) - UFC 144: Edgar vs. Henderson - February 26, 2012

- vs. Gray Maynard - Win via KO (punches) - UFC 136: Edgar vs. Maynard 3 - October 8, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. B.J. Penn - UFC - 2014





13) Johny Hendricks (15-2)


Height: 5'9

Birthday: September 12, 1983

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Georges St. Pierre - Loss via decision (split) - UFC 167: St. Pierre vs. Hendricks - November 17, 2013

- vs. Carlos Condit - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 158: St. Pierre vs. Diaz - March 16, 2013

- vs. Martin Kampmann - Win via KO (punch) - UFC 154: St. Pierre vs. Condit - November 17, 2012

- vs. Josh Koscheck - Win via decision (split) - UFC on Fox 3: Diaz vs. Miller - May 5, 2012

- vs. Jon Fitch - Win via KO (punches) - UFC 141: Lesnar vs. Overeem - December 30, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. Robbie Lawler - UFC 171: Hendricks vs. Lawler - March 15, 2014

Comment: With GSP on the sidelines in a self-imposed sabbatical, Hendricks and Lawler will fight to determine the new UFC welterweight champion in Dallas.




14) Gilbert Melendez (22-3)


Height: 5'9

Birthday: April 12, 1982

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Diego Sanchez - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 166: Velasquez vs. dos Santos 3 - October 19, 2013

- vs. Benson Henderson - Loss via decision (split) - UFC on Fox: Henderson vs. Melendez - April 20, 2013

- vs. Josh Thomson - Win via decision (split) - Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Cormier - May 19, 2012

- vs. Jorge Masvidal - Win via decision (unanimous) - Strikeforce: Melendez vs. Masvidal - December 17, 2010

- vs. Tatsuya Kawajiri - Win via TKO (strikes) - Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Daley - April 9, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown

Comment: Despite an announcement from the UFC that Melendez was signed to fight Khabib Nurmagomedov in a big lightweight tilt at UFC 170, we have since learned that bout was never actually inked. The reason appears to be that Melendez wants to return to the cage in April and not as soon as next month.




15) Vitor Belfort (24-10)


Height: 6'0

Birthday: January 4, 1977

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Dan Henderson - WIn via KO (head kick) - UFC Fight Night: Belfort vs. Henderson - November 9, 2013

- vs. Luke Rockhold - Win via TKO (strikes) - UFC on FX 8: Belfort vs. Rockhold - May 18, 2013

- vs. Michael Bisping - Win via TKO (strikes) - UFC on FX 7: Belfort vs. Bisping - January 19, 2013

- vs. Jon Jones - Loss via submission (americana) - UFC 152: Jones vs. Belfort - September 22, 2012

- vs. Anthony Johnson - Win via submission (rear naked choke) - UFC 142: Aldo vs. Mendes - January 14, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown



Closing Comments: Alexander Gustafsson, Chad Mendes, Eddie Alvarez, Michael Chandler, Daniel Cormier and Junior dos Santos received additional votes.

Note that Georges St. Pierre has been removed from consideration for all 411 MMA Rankings while he is considered "out of the game." While we all can assume he'll return at some juncture, until that becomes official, he is out of the welterweight and these pound-for-pound rankings.






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