(I had no idea what to use for the featured image on this post, so I Googled “puppy taking a shit,” and found this. It fits surprisingly well, I think.)
Last week, we learned that the UFC and FightMetric were organizing a new set of official fighter-rankings, which would be updated often and made available to the public. It was a good idea in theory — for one thing, the rankings would be a helpful reference tool for casual fans trying to keep the rosters straight — but it suffered from two fatal flaws: 1) The rankings would have zero impact on which fights actually get booked, as we were once again reminded today, and 2) If the ranking body is only made up of media members who are on good terms with the UFC, as well as reporters who don’t automatically recognize this exercise as a conflict of interest, the results will inevitably be biased.
The debut rankings list came out today, featuring the opinions of 28 media members, including longtime shills (Franklin McNeil), obscure non-entities (“Burbank Leader”?), and left-field surprises. (Andreas Hale, good to see you my man!) Yeah, I know this sounds like sour grapes from a blacklisted media refugee, but after scanning through the new rankings lists, it’s clear that this thing is as useless as you probably imagined. Here are some notable lowlights…
1. Despite his 0-0 record in the UFC, Gilbert Melendez is listed as the #1 lightweight contender. You know, because he’ll be fighting for the title soon.
2. Other 0-0 fighters on the rankings list: Tarec Saffiedine (#10 welterweight), Luke Rockhold (#7 middleweight), and Gegard Mousasi (#10 light-heavyweight).
5. “Steve Cofield, Mark Daniels, Marc Raimondi & John Silver all ranked Chael Sonnen as a top 10 LHW. Sonnen hasn’t fought at LHW in 7+ years.” Sonnen’s name doesn’t appear on the consensus light-heavyweight list, or the middleweight list, which is just as strange.
6. A dude named Anthony Springer Jr. had Roy Nelson and Pat Barry listed as the UFC’s #3- and #4-ranked heavyweight contenders — based on accomplishments, not personality — and ranked Brian Bowles as the #3 bantamweight, directly over Urijah Faber. Also, Daniel Cormier was in his Top 10 P4P list, but wasn’t included in his heavyweight rankings. This is the caliber of MMA-pundit that they’re relying on, guys.
8. Since the UFC only has three fighters in its women’s bantamweight division, a rankings list for that division doesn’t exist.
9. Speaking of weak divisions, the flyweight ranking list has two fighters who sport 0-1 records in the UFC — #10-ranked Ulysses Gomez, and Jussier Da Silva, who managed to place all the way at #5.
10. Ian McCall is winless at flyweight in the UFC. He’s still ranked as the #3 contender, right above John Moraga (2-0).