Dustin Poirier (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

Combat Press MMA Rankings: February 2021

Rob Tatum Assistant Editor

Every month, Combat Press will provide MMA rankings for each weight class from heavyweight to strawweight, as well as the pound-for-pound rankings (including all genders).

Note: the numbers in parentheses represent the fighter’s ranking from the previous month.

Heavyweight
  1. Stipe Miocic (1)
  2. Daniel Cormier (2)
  3. Francis Ngannou (3)
  4. Curtis Blaydes (4)
  5. Jairzinho Rozenstruik (5)
  6. Derrick Lewis (6)
  7. Ciryl Gane (7)
  8. Alexander Volkov (8)
  9. Alistair Overeem (9)
  10. Junior dos Santos (10)

No fighters in the top 10 were in action during the past month, so the rankings remain unchanged.


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Light Heavyweight
  1. Jon Jones (1)
  2. Jan Błachowicz (2)
  3. Dominick Reyes (3)
  4. Glover Teixeira (4)
  5. Thiago Santos (5)
  6. Corey Anderson (6)
  7. Aleksandar Rakić (7)
  8. Jiří Procházka (8)
  9. Anthony Smith (9)
  10. Vadim Nemkov (10)

No fighters in the top 10 were in action during the past month, so the rankings remain unchanged.

Middleweight
  1. Israel Adesanya (1)
  2. Robert Whittaker (2)
  3. Paulo Costa (3)
  4. Yoel Romero (4)
  5. Jared Cannonier (5)
  6. Darren Till (6)
  7. Marvin Vettori (7)
  8. Jack Hermansson (8)
  9. Kelvin Gastelum (9)
  10. Gegard Mousasi (10)

No fighters in the top 10 were in action during the past month, so the rankings remain unchanged.

Welterweight
  1. Kamaru Usman (1)
  2. Gilbert Burns (2)
  3. Colby Covington (3)
  4. Jorge Masvidal (4)
  5. Leon Edwards (5)
  6. Tyron Woodley (6)
  7. Stephen Thompson (7)
  8. Douglas Lima (8 – tie)/Michael Chiesa (10)
  9. Nate Diaz (8 – tie)
  10. Anthony Pettis (9)

The UFC on ESPN 20 main event was a lopsided affair, as Michael Chiesa used his wrestling to control Neil Magny over the course of five rounds. The impressive win for Chiesa breaks his 10th-place tie, but it creates a new eighth-place tie between Chiesa and Bellator champion Douglas Lima.

Lightweight
  1. Khabib Nurmagomedov (1)
  2. Dustin Poirier (3)
  3. Justin Gaethje (2)
  4. Charles Oliveira (4)
  5. Patricio “Pitbull” Freire (7)
  6. Conor McGregor (5)
  7. Michael Chandler (10 – tie)
  8. Tony Ferguson (8)
  9. Dan Hooker (6)
  10. Rafael dos Anjos (9)

Dropped from the rankings: Paul Felder (10 – tie)

UFC 257 added intrigue to the future of the lightweight division. In the pay-per-view card’s main event, Dustin Poirier became the first man to knock out former champion Conor McGregor. With the victory, Poirier climbs to the No. 2 spot in the rankings, while McGregor falls to sixth. The night’s co-main event featured the UFC debut of former Bellator titleholder Michael Chandler, who emphatically knocked out New Zealand’s Dan Hooker in the first round. Chandler’s impressive victory results in a jump to seventh, whereas Hooker drops to ninth. The shuffling pushes Paul Felder outside the top 10.

Featherweight
  1. Alex Volkanovski (1)
  2. Max Holloway (2)
  3. Brian Ortega (3)
  4. Zabit Magomedsharipov (4)
  5. Patricio “Pitbull” Freire (5)
  6. Chan Sung Jung (6)
  7. Yair Rodriguez (7)
  8. Bibiano Fernandes (9)
  9. A.J. McKee (10 – tie)
  10. Calvin Kattar (10 – tie)

Dropped from the rankings: Renato Moicano (8)

The most dominant performance of January took place at the UFC’s debut on ABC. Former champion Max Holloway put on a boxing clinic against Calvin Kattar over five rounds to prove that the Hawaiian is still a title contender. The loss for Kattar breaks his tie with A.J. McKee for the final spot in the top 10. Elsewhere, Brazilian Renato Moicano exits the rankings after two straight bouts at lightweight.

Bantamweight
  1. Petr Yan (1)
  2. Demetrious Johnson (2)
  3. Aljamain Sterling (3)
  4. Cory Sandhagen (4)
  5. José Aldo (5)
  6. Frankie Edgar (6)
  7. Kyoji Horiguchi (7)
  8. Pedro Munhoz (8)
  9. Cody Garbrandt (9)
  10. Rob Font (10)

No fighters in the top 10 were in action during the past month, so the rankings remain unchanged.

Flyweight
  1. Deiveson Figueiredo (1)
  2. Brandon Moreno (2)
  3. Joseph Benavidez (3)
  4. Alex Perez (4)
  5. Jussier “Formiga” da Silva (5)
  6. Askar Askarov (6)
  7. Alexandre Pantoja (7)
  8. Brandon Royval (8)
  9. Kai Kara-France (9)
  10. Rogério Bontorin (10)

No fighters in the top 10 were in action during the past month, so the rankings remain unchanged.

Strawweight
  1. Jarred Brooks (1)
  2. Namiki Kawahara (2)
  3. Haruo Ochi (3)
  4. Adam Antolin (5)
  5. Tatsuya So (6)
  6. Gexi Sanlang (7)
  7. Akhmednabi Magomedov (8)
  8. Toshiya Takashima (-)
  9. Yuta Miyazawa (9)
  10. Ryo Hatta (10)

Dropped from the rankings: Mitsuhisa Sunabe (4)

January brought some change to the strawweight top 10. Notably, second-ranked Namiki Kawahara was in action at ONE Championship: Unbreakable, but it came in the flyweight division. Kawahara was knocked out by Lito Adiwang, but for the time being retains his place in the top 10. Elsewhere, sixth-ranked Gexi Sanlang submitted Zhengyong Lu by triangle choke at WLF MMA 50. Finally, fourth-ranked Mitsuhisa Sunabe leaves the rankings due to inactivity.

Pound-For-Pound
  1. Jon Jones (1)
  2. Amanda Nunes (2)
  3. Khabib Nurmagomedov (3)
  4. Demetrious Johnson (4)
  5. Stipe Miocic (5)
  6. Israel Adesanya (6)
  7. Kamaru Usman (7)
  8. Valentina Shevchenko (8)
  9. Patricio “Pitbull” Freire (9)
  10. Alexander Volkanovski (10)

No fighters in the top 10 were in action during the past month, so the rankings remain unchanged.


Editor’s Note: Fighters are eligible to be ranked if they have competed in the last 18 months. Any fighter that chooses to switch weight classes will be ranked in their previous weight class until they have competed twice in their new division. Fighters who announce their retirement will remain ranked for a period of six months following their final bout.