Sherdog Official Mixed Martial Arts Rankings


Feb 10, 2010
Dave Mandel/

Fedor Emelianenko

1. Fedor Emelianenko (31-1, 1 NC)
In the headliner of Strikeforce’s first CBS effort, Emelianenko showed the skills and drama that are part-and-parcel of being MMA’s top heavyweight. He will have the opportunity to do so again in April, when he carries the torch for Strikeforce’s second card on live network television against Fabricio Werdum.

2. Brock Lesnar (4-1)
While he remains far from fully healthy, Lesnar’s intestinal disorder will not ruin his fighting career. However, with the UFC heavyweight champion on the shelf until at least mid 2010, a Frank Mir-Shane Carwin interim title bout in March will likely determine Lesnar’s next foe when he returns to the Octagon.

3. Frank Mir (13-4)
Mir blew away French kickboxer Cheick Kongo in just 72 seconds at UFC 107. Now, his road to a rubber match with Brock Lesnar will run through Newark, N.J., at UFC 111 in March, when he meets the unbeaten Shane Carwin for the interim UFC heavyweight championship.

4. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (32-5-1, 1 NC)
A staph infection prevented Nogueira from fighting at UFC 108 in January, but it will not keep him from a date with Cain Velasquez. The unbeaten heavyweight prospect will remain the next foe for “Minotauro,” with their bout now scheduled for UFC 110 on Feb. 21 in Sydney, Australia.

5. Brett Rogers (10-1)
Rogers’ spirited effort against heavyweight ruler Fedor Emelianenko on Nov. 7 seems to have done more for perceptions of his heavyweight future than his 22-second demolition of former UFC champion Andrei Arlovski. Since the defeat, Rogers has made the lofty claim that he will not lose again.

6. Junior dos Santos (9-1)
Dos Santos again illustrated why he has been touted as one of the heavyweight division’s best young talents, as he quickly punched out veteran striker Gilbert Yvel at UFC 108. Dos Santos will take on Gabriel Gonzaga at the UFC’s debut card on Versus on March 21 in Colorado. He was originally slated to meet “Napao” at UFC 108.

7. Andrei Arlovski (15-7)
Arlovski has been on the shelf since being flattened by Brett Rogers in just 22 seconds in June. The former UFC heavyweight king was in the running to face Alistair Overeem at the K-1 “Dynamite” show on New Year’s Eve, but Fighting and Entertainment Group chose the considerably less alluring Kazuyuki Fujita as Overeem’s opponent.

8. Cain Velasquez (7-0)
Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira’s staph infection will not ruin Velasquez’s chance to take on the second-best heavyweight in MMA history. His bout with Nogueira, originally slated for UFC 108 on Jan. 2, will now happen at UFC 110 on Feb. 21 in Sydney, Australia.

9. Shane Carwin (11-0)
Carwin still has designs on squaring off with Brock Lesnar. However, in order to do so, he will first need to deal with a former Lesnar foe in Frank Mir. They will meet at UFC 111 on March 27, with a slice of the UFC heavyweight crown on the line.

10. Fabricio Werdum (13-4-1)
In November, on the biggest stage of his pro career -- American network television -- Werdum took a well-deserved unanimous verdict over Antonio Silva. That victory earned him an even bigger bout, as he will take on the sport’s heavyweight king, Fedor Emelianenko, on CBS in April.

Other contenders: Aleksander Emelianenko, Gabriel Gonzaga, Alistair Overeem, Ben Rothwell, Antonio Silva.

* With no fights in the last 365 days and none scheduled in the next 90, formerly sixth-ranked Josh Barnett exits the rankings due to ineligibility.
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