July 9, 2010
Lesnar rises to top of heavyweight rankingsFedor tumbles after stunning loss
By JOSE RODRIGUEZ, QMI Agency
Funny what two weeks can do to the heavyweight rankings.
With Fedor “The Last Emperor” Emelianenko losing to massive underdog Fabricio Werdum and Brock Lesnar taking out the then-undefeated Shane Carwin, there has been plenty of shuffling in the heavyweight hierarchy.
Once upon a time, the World Alliance of Mixed Martial Arts set the closest thing to official rankings. The panel included many of the top MMA pundits in the world — including yours truly.
But WAMMA is no more.
So official rankings don’t really exist.
A quick rake through the net — with a little opinion from the Scrapyard — puts the heavyweight rankings something like this. Of course, there is nothing official about these rankings, except most people who are paid to watch MMA mostly agree with them.
So argue away, here are the Scrapyard heavyweight rankings:
1. Brock Lesnar — Lucky to survive the first-period onslaught by Carwin, but he did and then submitted the No. 1 contender. Lesnar’s a polarizing figure among fans who hate his pro wrestling background, but it’s hard to deny his ability.
2. Fabricio Werdum — When you take out the man critics call the best fighter in the world, you go from unranked to No. 2. Werdum is 14-4-1 and has fought in every major fight club on the planet. Will he able to move up from No. 2 — or even stay there?
3. Fedor Emelianenko — Biggest knock on the 30-2 Russian is the lack of top-rate competition by not going to the UFC. The 69-second loss to Werdum deflated a bit of Emelianenko’s legend. If he’s to climb back up the rankings, he’ll need to fight bigger names.
4. Cain Velasquez — He’s 8-0 and the next man to challenge Lesnar for the UFC belt. All but one of Velasquez’s victories have come from TKOs and his strong wrestling background may match well against Lesnar.
5. Junior dos Santos — The heavy hitter is 11-1 and undefeated in the UFC, but on the light side compared to Lesnar and Carwin. Dos Santos takes on Roy Nelson in August.
6. Shane Carwin — Despite the loss to Lesnar, he’s the only fighter to ever get Lesnar in any real trouble. He’s also the closest to him in size. Carwin will be climbing back up the ranks soon.
7. Alistair Overeem — The most experienced of the 10, the Dutchman hasn’t lost in nearly three years.
8. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira — He’s lost two of his last three, but the Brazilian ground ace is always dangerous.
9. Roy Nelson — Not the prettiest physical specimen, but Nelson knows how to knock people out.
10. Frank Mir — Despite his loss to Carwin, Mir has looked better in the past 18 months than at any other time in his career.