MMA Fighter Rankings: Pound-for-Pound
For decades, boxing observers attempted to pin a Best Pound-For-Pound Fighter label on one boxer. Whether it was Tyson in his heyday, Roy Jones in numerous weight classes, or the Pacquiao vs Mayweather debate, fans wanted to pick one fighter as the best. It’s the same for MMA, with even more heated debate as the UFC now dwarfs boxing in popularity.
Who is the best pound-for-pound fighter on the planet? There is art and science in our list, and some good ol' down-home opinion based on what fight fan Jack Randall sees in the Octagon. See the OddsShark Pound-For-Pound Rankings below and watch for updates.
1. Jose Aldo (25-1)
Jose Aldo has put together a streak of 18 straight wins that includes nine title defenses. He has also burned through most of the top talent in the UFC Featherweight division, losing few rounds along the way. He will face what looks like his toughest challenge to date when he defends his title against Connor McGregor this summer.
2. Cain Velasquez (13-1)
Cain Velasquez finished his trilogy with Junior dos Santos in dominant fashion and showed the MMA world that he is indeed the baddest man on the planet. His lone loss was shrouded in rumors of injuries and his dominance over every opponent he’s faced earns him this spot on the pound-for-pound Top 10 list as the best Heavyweight in the world. He will soon return from injury to face Fabricio Werdum to once again unify the title.
3. Chris Weidman (13-0)
Chris Weidman is not only the fighter who dethroned and potentially retired Anderson Silva, he is also undefeated in his professional career. He has dominated all of his opponents with a combination of boxing and wrestling skills that allow him to control fights regardless of where they’re fought. Weidman will have the potential to rise in the rankings if he can maintain his dominance over the division’s best contenders.
4. Demetrious Johnson (22-2-1)
Demetrious Johnson has established himself as the best little man in MMA with recent wins over the best Flyweight fighters in the UFC. Johnson has also contended for the title at Bantamweight, recording wins against some of the best 135-pound fighters in MMA.
5. Ronda Rousey (11-0)
Women have become a permanent fixture in the UFC thanks to the dominance of UFC Women’s Bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey. The former Olympic Judo medalist won her first eight fights via armbar and she has shown that she is ever-evolving as a striker by finishing former Olympic medalist Sara McMann and Alexis Davis via first-round TKO. Her latest victim was No.1 contender Cat Zingano, who she finished in 14 seconds.
6. TJ Dillashaw (11-2)
Dillashaw shocked the world with a decisive win over Renan Barao last May at UFC 173, but now he will need to defend his title in a rematch against Barao in July in order to maintain his recent elevation in ranking and his new Bantamweight title.
7. Robbie LawlEr (25-10-1)
Despite being around the fight game for a long time, Robbie Lawler has finally become the UFC Welterweight champion with a close win over Johny Hendricks. He will have a long list of contenders to defend against, but Lawler looks like he’s in peak condition to do it.
8. Daniel Cormier (16-1)
Daniel Cormier has walked through every opponent he’s faced in MMA with the exception of Jon Jones. The current UFC Light Heavyweight champion looks like he will rule until the return of Jones, when the two will compete in the second round of their rivalry.
9. Renan Barao (33-2-1)
After dropping his UFC Bantamweight title to Dillashaw last year, Barao has made a triumphant return to the Octagon with a submission win over Mitch Gagnon. He will get another opportunity to beat Dillashaw and regain his title, but if he is unsuccessful he will drop off the pound-for-pound list.
10. Rafael dos Anjos (24-7)
The newly crowned UFC Lightweight champion has made his way onto the pound-for-pound list with an impressive win over Anthony Pettis. He’s yet to defend the title and could climb the ranks quickly with more performances like his last. He will face Donald Cerrone next, and an eventual rematch with Pettis is sure to come to fruition at some point in the future.