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411 MMA Rankings 03.18.14: Welterweight Division
Posted by Jonathan Solomon on 03.18.2014






It's not often we have this much turnover in a single division so suddenly but that is indeed the situation in the welterweight division. Today we unveil the latest 411 MMA Rankings and it's the crazy 170-pound weight class with a completely new look up and down the top fifteen fighters.

How do you logically throw everyone into place when it seems like the top five was completely blown up after the past eight weeks?

The new UFC champion is Johny Hendricks following his five-round decision victory over Robbie Lawler on Saturday. Also happening at UFC 171, Hector Lombard beat Jake Shields and Carlos Condit lost due to injury against Tyron Woodley. Throw in Rory MacDonald and his win over Demian Maia from last month and Dong Hyun Kim's win over John Hathaway earlier this month, you get the idea of what kind of chaos we faced this week.

Two things are for certain, neither Georges St. Pierre or Nick Diaz are present as both are in separate kinds of retirement. GSP heard directly from Hendricks on Ariel Helwani's podcast yesterday that the new champ wants to fight him. St. Pierre told him to be patient, so you need not be a rocket scientist to figure out the greatest of all-time is eyeing a comeback sooner than later. Meanwhile, Diaz was present at UFC 171 and says he'd like to fight again in the coming months, so good luck to UFC booker Joe Silva on trying to make that happen.

Outside the UFC, Bellator will crown their new champion next month between Rick Hawn and Douglas Lima. Former champ Ben Askren is still hanging around as we wait to find out who his debut fight for One FC in Asia will be against.




Rankings From One Year Ago
01.08.13


1. Georges St. Pierre

2. Johny Hendricks

3. Carlos Condit

4. Rory MacDonald

5. Jon Fitch

5. Martin Kampmann

7. Nick Diaz

8. Jake Ellenberger

9. Demian Maia

10. Nate Marquardt

11. Josh Koscheck

12. Ben Askren

13. Siyar Bahadurzada

14. Dong Hyun Kim

15. Erick Silva






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 They can return when they have served their suspension or in the event it is rescinded.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 Official MMA Rankings


Welterweight Division




1) Johny Hendricks (16-2)


Height: 5'9

Birthday: September 12, 1983

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Robbie Lawler - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 171: Hendricks vs. Lawler - March 15, 2014

- vs. Georges St. Pierre - Loss via decision (split) - UFC 167: St. Pierre vs. Hendricks - November 16, 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

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown

Comment: Finally, it was so close to coming to fruition before Thanksgiving, but better later than never, right? Hendricks became the undisputed UFC welterweight champion over the weekend and now has the largest target on his back. While he may have struggled to make weight on Friday, it did not appear to play a role in the 25-minute fight Saturday night and unlike the fight with GSP last year, Hendricks did not allow himself to play it safe against Robbie Lawler.

Interesting to note, Hendricks becomes another American UFC champion with a strong base in wrestling, joining Cain Velasquez, Jon Jones, Chris Weidman and Demetrious Johnson.




2) "Ruthless" Robbie Lawler (22-10, 1 NC)


Height: 5'11

Birthday: March 20, 1982

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Johny Hendricks - Loss via decision (unanimous) - UFC 171: Hendricks vs. Lawler - March 15, 2014

- vs. Rory MacDonald - Win via decision (split) - UFC 167: St. Pierre vs. Hendricks - November 16, 2013

- vs. Bobby Voelker - Win via KO (head kick) - UFC on Fox 8: Johnson vs. Moraga - July 27, 2013

- vs. Josh Koscheck - Win via TKO (strikes) - UFC 157: Rousey vs. Carmouche - February 23, 2013

- vs. Lorenz Larkin - Loss via decision (unanimous) - Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Kennedy - July 14, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown

Comment: You hate to talk about moral victories or anything of the kind, but Lawler took the fight to Hendricks and just fell short by one round, according to most onlookers. Lawler's strategy was to take him into the deep waters in wake of his initial missing weight Friday afternoon, but he could not seal the deal. Despite the loss, he should still be in the title mix and don't be surprised if he finds himself in another title fight with one more win.




3) Tyron Woodley (13-2)


Height: 5'9

Birthday: April 17, 1982

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Carlos Condit - Win via TKO (injury) - UFC 171: Hendricks vs. Lawler - March 15, 2014

- vs. Josh Koscheck - Win via KO (punches) - UFC 167: St. Pierre vs. Hendricks - November 16, 2013

- vs. Jake Shields - Loss via decision (split) - UFC 161 - June 15, 2013

- vs. Jay Hieron - Win via KO (punches) - UFC 156: Aldo vs. Edgar - February 2, 2013

- vs. Nate Marquardt - Loss via KO (elbows & punches) - Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Kennedy - July 14, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown

Comment: Aside from Johny Hendricks, perhaps no other fighter walked away with as much gained as Tyron Woodley about 72 hours ago. While Condit was initially injured on a takedown, Woodley finished the fight with a kick that forced the end of the fight. Easily, it was the biggest win of his professional career and could theoretically propel him straight into a title fight.




4) Carlos Condit (29-8)


Height: 6'1

Birthday: April 26, 1984

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Tyron Woodley - Loss via TKO (injury) - UFC 171: Hendricks vs. Lawler - March 15, 2014

- vs. Martin Kampmann - Win via TKO (strikes) - UFC Fight Night: Condit vs. Kampmann 2 - August 28, 2013

- vs. Johny Hendricks - Loss via decision (unanimous) - UFC 158: St. Pierre vs. Diaz - March 16, 2013

- vs. Georges St. Pierre - Loss via decision (unanimous) - UFC 154: St. Pierre vs. Condit - November 17, 2012

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

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown

Comment: The one thing you can never predict in sports came to light Saturday night for Carlos Condit. One of the most consistently high quality fighters of this generation may have suffered a torn meniscus and torn ACL. Tyron Woodley, not doing anything wrong, took advantage of the situation and won the fight as Condit could no longer continue. If the injuries are indeed that serious, Condit's likely out of action until 2015.




5) Rory MacDonald (16-2)


Height: 6'0

Birthday: July 22, 1989

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Demian Maia - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 170: Rousey vs. McMann - February 22, 2014

- vs. Robbie Lawler - Loss via decision (split) - UFC 167: St. Pierre vs. Hendricks - November 16, 2013

- vs. Jake Ellenberger - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC on Fox 8: Johnson vs. Moraga - July 27, 2013

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

- vs. Che Mills - Win via TKO (strikes) - UFC 145: Jones vs. Evans - April 21, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown

Comment: Rory brought an end to Demian Maia's strong welterweight run by beating him at UFC 170 last month. Thanks to the chaos brought on by all the results from UFC 171 this weekend, MacDonald is one of the fighters on the shortlist for the next title fight with Johny Hendricks.




6) "Stun Gun" Dong Hyun Kim (19-2-1, 1 NC)


Height: 6'1

Birthday: November 17, 1981

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. John Hathaway - Win via KO (spinning back elbow) - UFC Fight Night: Kim vs. Hathaway - March 1, 2014

- vs. Erick Silva - Win via KO (punch) - UFC Fight Night: Maia vs. Shields - October 9, 2013

- vs. Siyar Bahadurzada - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC in Japan: Silva vs. Stann - March 3, 2013

- vs. Paulo Thiago - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC in China: Franklin vs. Le - November 10, 2012

- vs. Demian Maia - Loss via TKO (injury) - UFC 148: Silva vs. Sonnen 2 - July 7, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown

Comment: Four consecutive wins and another impressive knockout finish for the top fighter out of South Korea. "Stun Gun" finished John Hathaway about a minute into the third round with a wild spinning elbow and is simply adding to his impressive streak each time he steps in the cage. Depending on how the match-ups shake out over the next month, I wouldn't mind witnessing Kim fight Hector Lombard.



7) Hector Lombard (34-4-1)


Height: 5'9

Birthday: February 2, 1978

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Jake Shields - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC 171: Hendricks vs. Lawler - March 15, 2014

- vs. Nate Marquardt - Win via KO (strikes) - UFC 166: Velasquez vs. dos Santos 3 - October 19, 2013

- vs Yushin Okami - Loss via decision (split) - UFC on Fuel TV 8: Silva vs. Stann - March 3, 2013

- vs. Rousimar Palhares - Win via KO (strikes) - UFC on FX: Sotiropoulos vs. Pearson - December 14, 2012

- vs. Tim Boetsch - Loss via decision (split) - UFC 149: Faber vs. Barao - July 21, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown

Comment: The last time Lombard went the distance in a fight and won was in his first defense of the Bellator middleweight championship in 2010 against Alexander Shlemenko. But, his fight with Jake Shields this weekend went the full 15-minutes and Lombard judo threw his way to victory.



8) Matt "The Immortal" Brown (18-11)


Height: 6'0

Birthday: January 10, 1981

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Mike Pyle - Win via KO (strikes) - UFC Fight Night: Shogun vs. Sonnen - August 17, 2013

- vs. Jordan Mein - Win via TKO (strikes) - UFC on Fox: Henderson vs. Melendez - April 20, 2013

- vs. Mike Swick - Win via KO (punches) - UFC on Fox: Henderson vs. Diaz - December 8, 2012

- vs. Luis Ramos - Win via TKO (strikes) - UFC on FX: Maynard vs. Guida - June 22, 2012

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

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. Erick Silva - UFC Fight Night: Brown vs. Silva - May 10, 2014

Comment: So, Brown is returning from his back injury (suffered late last year) to headline a Fight Night card in Cincinnati this spring against Erick Silva. While it's a minor step down from challenging someone such as Carlos Condit, fans should not bitch and moan about this at all. Between Brown and Silva, this fight includes two of the most aggressive strikers in the division and this is practically guaranteed to be a one-round brawl.




9) Ben Askren (12-0)


Height: 5'10

Birthday: July 18, 1984

Currently Fighting With: One FC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Andrey Koreshkov - Win via TKO (strikes) - Bellator 97 - July 31, 2013

- vs. Karl Amoussou - Win via TKO (doctor stoppage) - Bellator 86 - January 24, 2013

- vs. Douglas Lima - Win via decision (unanimous) - Bellator 64 - April 7, 2012

- vs. Jay Hieron - Win via decision (split) - Bellator 56 - October 29, 2011

- vs. Nick Thompson - Win via decision (unanimous) - Bellator 40 - April 9, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown





10) Jake Ellenberger (29-7)


Height: 5'11

Birthday: March 28, 1985

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Rory MacDonald - Loss via decision (unanimous) - UFC on Fox 8: Johnson vs. Moraga - July 27, 2013

- vs. Nate Marquardt - Win via TKO (strikes) - UFC 158: St. Pierre vs. Diaz - March 16, 2013

- vs. Jay Hieron - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC on FX: Browne vs. Bigfoot - October 5, 2012

- vs. Martin Kampmann - Loss via KO (knees) - TUF 15 Finale - June 1, 2012

- vs. Diego Sanchez - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC on Fuel: Sanchez vs. Ellenberger - February 15, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

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

Comment: Rebooked for next month in Baltimore, Ellenberger will meet Tarec Saffiedine (this was originally scheduled for January before Jake suffered an injury). The Nebraska native will risk becoming an afterthought in this rejuvenated division if he should lose at UFC 172, especially against a guy who looked great in his company debut earlier this year.




11) Jake Shields (29-7-1, 1 NC)


Height: 5'11

Birthday: January 9, 1979

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Hector Lombard - Loss via decision (unanimous) - UFC 171: Hendricks vs. Lawler - March 15, 2014

- vs. Demian Maia - Win via decision (split) - UFC Fight Night: Maia vs. Shields - October 9, 2013

- vs. Tyron Woodley - Win via decision (split) - UFC 161 - June 15, 2013

- vs. Ed Herman - No Contest (win overturned due to drug test failure) - UFC 150 - August 11, 2012

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

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown

Comment: Everyone knows the deal with Jake Shields -- one of the best grapplers in the sport, one of the worst strikers, too. Still, it doesn't make performances like his from Saturday any less brutal to take. Granted, what would you expect him to do against a powerful KO artist like Lombard? In any event, with the loss, Shields falls back down the welterweight ladder after putting together some kind of impressive run last year.




12) Tarec "Sponge" Saffiedine (15-3)


Height: 5'10

Birthday: September 6, 1986

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Hyun Gyu Lim - Win via decision (unanimous) - UFC Fight Night: Saffiedine vs. Lim - January 4, 2014

- vs. Nate Marquardt - Win via decision (unanimous) - Strikeforce: Marquardt vs. Saffiedine - January 12, 2013

- vs. Roger Bowling - Win via decision (unanimous) - Strikeforce: Rousey vs. Kaufman - August 18, 2012

- vs. Tyler Stinson - Win via decision (split) - Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine - January 7, 2012

- vs. Scott Smith - Win via decision (unanimous) - Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Henderson - July 30, 2011

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. Jake Ellenberger





13) Demian Maia (18-6)


Height: 6'0

Birthday: November 6, 1977

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Rory MacDonald - Loss via decision (unanimous) - UFC 170: Rousey vs. McMann - February 22, 2014

- vs. Jake Shields - Loss via decision (split) - UFC Fight Night: Maia vs. Shields - October 9, 2013

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

- vs. Rick Story - Win via submission (neck crank) - UFC 153: Silva vs. Bonnar - October 13, 2012

- vs. Dong Hyun Kim - Win via TKO (injury) - UFC 148: Silva vs. Sonnen 2 - July 7, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

- Unknown





14) Douglas Lima (25-5)


Height: 6'1

Birthday: January 5, 1988

Currently Fighting With: Bellator MMA

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Ben Saunders - Win via KO (head kick) - Bellator 100 - September 20, 2013

- vs. Bryan Baker - Win via KO (punch) - Bellator 90 - February 21, 2013

- vs. Michail Tsarev - Win via TKO (leg kicks) - Bellator 86 - January 24, 2013

- vs. Jacob Ortiz - Win via TKO (strikes) - Bellator 79 - November 2, 2012

- vs. Ben Askren - Loss via decision (unanimous) - Bellator 64 - April 6, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. Rick Hawn - Bellator 117 - April 18, 2014

Comment: Finally, Bellator will crown their new welterweight champion in exactly one month when Lima meets Rick Hawn in Council Bluffs, Iowa. The two won separate 8-man tournaments last year to earn this opportunity and the winner at Bellator 117 on Spike TV will get to wear the gold.




15) Steve Carl (21-3)


Height: 6'0

Birthday: December 20, 1984

Currently Fighting With: World Series of Fighting

Last 5 fights:

- vs. Josh Burkman - Win via technical submission (triangle choke) - WSOF 6 - October 26, 2013

- vs. Tyson Steele - WIn via submission (rear naked choke) - WSOF 3 - June 14, 2013

- vs. Ramico Blackmon - Win via submission (rear naked choke) - WSOF 1 - November 3, 2012

- vs. Andrew Trace - Win via submission (rear naked choke) - Madtown Throwdown 28 - August 11, 2012

- vs. Vic Hall - Win via submission (rear naked choke) - Extreme Challenge 216 - July 28, 2012

Next scheduled appearance:

- vs. Rousimar Palhares - WSOF 9 - March 29, 2014

Comment: Indeed, Carl is set to defend his WSOF welterweight title against the infamous Rousimar Palhares in under two weeks. Cut from the UFC because of his penchant for holding submission holds way too long, the folks at WSOF decided he learned his lesson and snatched the Brazilian up.





Final Notes: Kelvin Gastelum, Rick Hawn, Mike Pyle, Rick Story and Ryan Ford received additional votes.







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