The rankings system here on LowKick comes pretty close to perfect, in my eyes. Pulled from around 500 votes, the rankings are the culmination of every single users own personal rankings list. When each list is added, a fighters is awarded points for how highly rated they are. So if enough people consider Jose Aldo the P4P king, then he will earn his spot at the top, because you voted him there.Of course, everybody will have a different opinion, and a different P4P list.
But as I said, no system is perfect. While my P4P list might look totally different to yours, unless people agree with me, then few of my fighters will make it to the top 10. Take Brock Lesnar. While I might not consider 5-1 a P4P list worthy record, enough of you clearly do to merit the big guy taking the number 7 spot. So while the 10 looks pretty well for this month, here’s a list of fighters you should consider including in your list:
1. Jon Fitch
Lets make this one clear. The only person to defeat Jon Fitch in the past 8 years is the guy holding the top spot on our P4P list, GSP. Holding an overall record of 23-3-0-1, Fitch deserves a look in at the least. Fitch has defeated almost everybody in the Welterweight division in the UFC, completely dominating them, and imposing his will throughout the whole fight. While many dislike his style, the results speak for themselves, dispatching with top contenders such as Paulo Thaigo and Thaigo Alves with relative ease.
2. Shinya Aoki
There are few that don’t include Aoki amongst their top 10 Lightweights, but even then it’s hard to argue that he doesn’t belong on the P4P list. With a record of 25-5-0-1, finishing 15 of these fights by submission, it’s difficult to find a Lightweight who has fought better opponents as consistently. Defeating the likes of Joachim Hansen and Eddie Alvarez, before stumbling against Gilbert Melendez, Aoki proved he could hang with the best. After losing to Melendez, Aoki proved his worth by submitting the legendary Tatsuya Kawajiri, and then defeating BJJ black belt Marcus Aurelio in his own game via Decision.
Not that anybody will have forgotten, but cast your minds back to June 26th, Fedor vs Werdum, where one of the most highly decorated BJJ experts entered the cage against one Fedor Emilianenko and shocked the world. The thing is though, a guy with Werdum’s credential’s, it shouldn’t have been such a shock. Werdum is an expert off his back and laid a trap perfectly for Fedor. As well as this, Wedrum also holds a win over Fedor’s brother, Alexsander. Most notably, he has also beaten Alistair Overeem and Gabriel Gonzaga. He is the most decorated BJJ practitioner to make the transition into MMA.
4. Jake Shields
Few can argue with Shields wrestling skills, and few can dispute his place in the Middleweight top 10, but really, Shields deserves a p4p spot. Shields hasn’t lost a single fight in almost 6 years, and in that time has beaten a wealth of Middleweight talent, like Robbie Lawler, Mayhem Miller, Paul Daley, and even Dan Henderson. Time and time again, Shields has proven himself by sticking to his wrestling roots, and dominating his opponents, often taking home a unanimous decision. Despite his tendency for going to the score cards, he is all known for his submission skills and defence, training under Ceasar Gracie.
5. Ben Henderson
Currently running the show in the WEC’s often overlooked Lightweight division, “The Smooth One” has only tasted defeat once in 13 fights, and only going to decision twice. Henderson is known for utilizing his own brand of guillotine chokes, stopping an incredible 4 opponents with it, and a further 2 more via rear naked choke. At just 26, Henderson looks set to maintain his dominance, following wins over Shane Roller, Donald Cerrone and Jamie Varner.
6. Dominick Cruz
Another WEC favourite, Cruz currently wears the promotions Bantamweight strap, despite being relatively new at just 25. Overall, Cruz holds a record of 16-1, losing to a Urijah Faber at the peak of his dominance. Since then, Cruz has defeated all 7 of his opponents, out-wrestling each one in turn. He defeated Brian Bowles at WEC 47. As well as this, Cruz is best known for his two wars against Joseph Benavidez, winning both fights by unanimous decision.
7. Marlon Sandro
Current Featherweight King of Pancrase and Sengoku”>Sengoku favourite, Sandro holds an exceptional record of 17-1, only dropping a questionable decision to Michihiro Omigawa. Most consider Sandro second in the world at his weight (behind only Jose Aldo) due to his heavy hands, as well as slick bag of submissions. He is also the Sengoku”>Sengoku World Victory Road Featherweight Champion.
8. Gilbert Melendez
Current Strikeforce Lightweight Champ, Melendez looks to be a serious force within the California based company’s LW division. Taking the belt from Josh Thomson, Melendez looked almost unstoppable against Shinya Aoki. Using his wrestling and striking skills, he was able to completely dominate both fights. With a rubber match with Thomson looming, another win for “El Nino” would see him cement his status as a real force in his own division.
9. Gegard Mousasi
At the relatively young age of 25, Mousasi is possibly the most active fighter on the list, with an overall record of 30-3-1. Building a cult following in Japan, Mousasi’s skill set really gained exposure when he joined Strikeforce, winning the Lightheavyweight belt against Babalu Sobral in a fairly one sided beat down. Despite losing his belt to “King” Mo Lawal, Mousasi was out wrestled and spent most of the fight on his back, but still delivered more damage, and left Mo’s face looking like he’d gone ten rounds with Tyson. After this, Mousasi went on to win the DREAM Light Heavyweight Grand Prix, with an eye on regaining his Stirkeforce belt.
10. Jon Jones
A hot prospect if ever there was one, Jones is 11-1, his only loss a poorly handled DQ against Matt Hamill. Since breaking out against Stephan Bonnar, Jones unorthodox style as well as wrestling skills have saw him quickly rise the ranks, as well as become a fan favourite. Jones next fight will be against another prospect, Ryan Bader, in a fight that could gift Jones a future title shot. Never a dull moment in any of his fights, Jones seems to have an endless gas tank, and coupled with his speed, strength and skill, make him a very tricky opponent for anyone to deal with.
Photos: Esther Lin | AllElbows.com