So today I looked at Sherdog's newest Heavyweight Top 10 Rankings and am I a bit confused. As I look at the rankings, I wonder how much is based on potential and not on performance. Number 1, 2, and 3 make sense to me, Cain Velasquez at number 1, the undefeated undisputed heavyweight champion of the UFC. Second is Junior dos Santos, who is undefeated in the UFC, riding an 8 fight win streak and challenging for the UFC heavyweight title in November. Third on the list is Alistair Overeem. Now I contend that he hasn't faced the toughest of competition but he hasn't lost since 2007, with 10 wins and 1 no contest.
Number 4 I'm puzzled about. I don't deny Fabricio Werdum should be a top 10 heavyweight, but number 4 seems a bit generous. In the last 4 years he has gone 5-3. With losses to Andre Arlovski, Junior dos Santos and Alistair Overeem. His losses at those times were to top heavyweights, we all know Arlovski has fallen hard in the last couple of years. Now, Werdum is the first man to beat Fedor Emelianenko, but that alone does not justify a number 4 ranking especially coming off his one side decision loss to Alistair Overeem. I believe if you pit Werdum against Shane Carwin, Frank Mir, or Josh Barnett, I don't see how he can win.
Number 5 is Brock Lesnar. He is only 5-2 in his career and has fought the top guys in the world almost every time out. He hasn't fought since in almost a year since his devastating TKO loss to now champion Cain Velasquez. He has been fighting another bout of his diverticulitis. Number 5 seems a touch high to me, but considering the other men on the list, I'm fine with his ranking.
Number 6 is Shane Carwin. Again, I have to wonder how is ranked so high. He's coming off consecutive losses in which he was submitted in one and beaten to a bloody pulp in a one sided loss in the other.
Number 7 is Frank Mir. Some people would think a number 7 ranking fair for Mir, but I disagree. He has gone 6-2 in the last 4 years. His only 2 losses coming in title fights. Mir, in my opinion should be ranked at least 5th possibly even 4th.
Number 8 is Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. Big Nog is always a threat when he is healthy and he proved that again knocking out Brendan Schaub in his last outing. Nogueira has had some ups and downs in his last 5 years in MMA but has wins over Josh Barnett, Randy Couture and Tim Sylvia (for the UFC interim heavyweight title). I'm happy to see Nogueira still winning and I am happy with his ranking in the top 10.
Number 9 is Josh Barnett. Now Barnett has had some steroid issues and that may be hurting his ranking, but his results should prove otherwise. In the last 5 years, he's gone 13-2 his only losses were to Mirko Cro Cop in his prime and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, again, in his prime. He's currently riding an 8 fight win streak and has barely be touched in his last 2 fights. How Barnett is ranked so low baffles me. Barnett should definitely be considered top 5 in my opinion.
Number 10 is the head-scratcher for me. Daniel Cormier is making his entry into the top 10. He is 9-0 and has fought increasingly better competition each time he has entered the cage. But I don't know if he's quite top 10. His only 2 wins of note are against Jeff Monson and Antonio Silva. Those 2 wins in my mind don't justify a top 10 ranking. But in his defense, the other men scratching at the top 10 definitely don't belong there. So undefeated and a couple notable wins are good enough. Welcome to the top 10 Mr. Cormier.
I'm in no way a ranking expert, but a couple of these rankings a puzzling to me. Feel free to leave comments on your opinions.