Opinion: Why Bother With UFC Rankings If They Aren't Used

By Edward Carbajal Jan 17, 2020
Editor’s note: The views and opinions expressed below are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Sherdog.com, its affiliates and sponsors or its parent company, Evolve Media.

Current Ultimate Fighting Championship bantamweight champion Henry Cejudo is scheduled to face former UFC featherweight king Jose Aldo at UFC 250 according to a report from Combate. Aldo is a legend in his own right and while he did look good against Marlon Moraes at UFC 245, he still lost to the current No. 1 bantamweight contender according to the UFC rankings. A split decision loss is always debatable because it means the fight was close, but why not use the rankings to make the next fresh fight.

Aljamain Sterling is currently ranked number two and has wanted to get a shot at the title for a while now. Looking at his devastating loss to Moraes back in 2017, Sterling has come back to win four in a row to be ranked just underneath the man that handed him his last defeat. Sterling has admitted he would not mind the rematch with Moraes but he has been using social media to bring attention to a potential title match with Cejudo.

While he and Cejudo have gone back-and-forth on social media, it looks like the fight is almost signed for UFC 250 according to Combate’s report. Sterling’s reaction to the news seemed to echo what a lot fight fans are wondering about the UFC matchmaking these days. He said, "There's a new trend these days in [mixed martial arts]," wrote Sterling. "I'm not sure how this thing works anymore!"

Neither do the fans. A panel of media members vote on the official UFC rankings and, for a while, they mattered. However, in the current state of MMA, it seems like a lot blood and sweat being put in from the fighters can be quickly overlooked if there is an opportunity to make money. It's a business after all and when the promotion makes money, hopefully that means the fighters do too.

If that is how fights are going to be made, why bother with rankings?

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