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MMA Latest Fighter Rankings – July

Brice Schroeder

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This past month was an amazing time to be a fight fan.  Arguably the two biggest stars in the sport both appeared in the Octagon (Rousey and McGregor) and we witnessed one of the greatest fights in recent memory (Lawler-MacDonald).

July was also an extremely busy month for mixed martial art’s fans.  The UFC alone put on six events since our last rankings.  Sprinkle in some Bellator, WSOF, and ONE Championship and you get a lot of interesting changes in the newest addition of the MMA Latest fighter rankings

As always like MMA Latest on Facebook and follow @MMALatestNws and my personal account @BriceJSchroeder on twitter and let us know who made the cut for your rankings.

*6 writers (including myself) submitted ballots this month*

*All bouts up to August 6th were considered in these rankings*

 

Women’s Strawweight

01 Joanna Jędrzejczyk (10-0) – UFC – 6 of 6 1st place votes

02 Cláudia Gadelha (13-1) – UFC

03 Carla Esparza (10-3) – UFC

04 Jessica Aguilar (19-5) – UFC

05 Tecia Torres (6-0) – UFC

06 Karolina Kowalkiewicz (7-0) – KSW/Invicta FC

07 Rose Namajunas (2-2) – UFC

08 Maryna Moroz (6-0) – UFC

09 Joanne Calderwood (10-1) – UFC

10 Jessica Penne (12-2) – UFC

Honorable Mentions – Livia Souza, Paige VanZant, Alexa Grasso

 

Women’s Bantamweight

01 Ronda Rousey (12-0) – UFC – 6 of 6 1st place votes

02 Miesha Tate (17-5) – UFC

03 Cat Zingano (9-1) – UFC

04 Alexis Davis (17-6) – UFC

05 Sara McMann (8-2) – UFC

06 Sarah Kaufman (17-3 1 NC) – UFC

07 Jessica Eye (11-3 1 NC) – UFC

08 Holly Holm (9-0) – UFC

09 Amanda Nunes (10-4) – UFC

10 Tonya Evinger (15-6) – Invicta FC

Honorable Mentions – Bethe Correia, Liz Carmouche, Julianna Peña

 

Flyweight

01 Demetrious Johnson (22-2-1) – UFC – 6 of 6 1st place votes

02 John Dodson (17-6) – UFC

03 Joseph Benavidez (22-4) – UFC

04 Jussier Formiga (18-3) – UFC

05 Ian McCall (13-5) – UFC

06 John Moraga (16-4) – UFC

07 Kyoji Horiguchi (15-2) – UFC

08 Henry Cejudo (9-0) – UFC

09 Ali Bagautinov (13-3) – UFC

10 Zach Makovsky (19-6) – UFC

Honorable Mentions – Chris Cariaso, Dustin Ortiz, Wilson Reis,

 

Bantamweight

01 T.J. Dillashaw (12-2) – UFC – 6 of 6 1st place votes

02 Dominick Cruz (20-1) – UFC

03 Raphael Assunção (23-4) – UFC

04 Renan Barão (33-3 1 NC) – UFC

05 Urijah Faber (32-8) – UFC

06 Marlon Moraes (15-4-1) – WSOF

07 Aljamain Sterling (11-0) – UFC

08 Michael McDonald (16-3) – UFC

09 Bibiano Fernandes (18-3) – ONE Championship

10 Thomas Almeida (20-0) – UFC

Honorable Mentions – Takeya Mizugaki, Bryan Caraway, Johnny Eduardo, Eduardo Dantas,

 

Featherweight

01 José Aldo (25-1) – UFC – 6 of 6 1st place votes

02 Frankie Edgar (19-4-1) – UFC

03 Conor McGregor (18-2) – UFC

04 Chad Mendes (17-3) – UFC

05 Ricardo Lamas (15-4) – UFC

06 Max Holloway (13-3) – UFC

07 Charles Oliveira (20-4-1) – UFC

08 Patrício Freire (24-2) – Bellator

09 Dennis Bermudez (14-4) – UFC

10 Cub Swanson (21-7) – UFC

Honorable Mentions – Jeremy Stephens, Nik Lentz

 

Lightweight

01 Rafael dos Anjos (24-7) – UFC – 5 of 6 1st place votes

02 Khabib Nurmagomedov (22-0) – UFC – 1 of 6 1st place votes

03 Donald Cerrone (28-6 1 NC) – UFC

04 Anthony Pettis (18-3) – UFC

05 Benson Henderson (22-5) – UFC

06 Eddie Alvarez (26-4) – UFC

07 Michael Johnson (16-8) – UFC

08 Gilbert Melendez (22-5) – UFC

09 Will Brooks (15-1) – Bellator

10 Tony Ferguson (19-3) – UFC

Honorable Mentions – Edson Barboza, Myles Jury, Al Iaquinta, Beneil Dariush

 

Welterweight

01 Robbie Lawler (26-10 1 NC) – UFC – 6 of 6 1st place votes

02 Johny Hendricks (17-3) – UFC

03 Rory MacDonald (18-3) – UFC

04 Tyron Woodley (15-3) – UFC

05 Carlos Condit (30-8) – UFC

06 Matt Brown (20-13) – UFC

07 Demian Maia (21-6) – UFC

08 Ben Askren (14-0 1 NC) – ONE Championship

09 Hector Lombard (34-4-1 2 NC) – UFC

10 Rousimar Palhares (18-6) – WSOF

Honorable Mentions – Dong Hyun Kim, Gunner Nelson, Tarec Saffiedine

 

Middleweight

01 Chris Weidman (13-0) – UFC – 6 of 6 1st place votes

02 Luke Rockhold (14-2) – UFC

03 Jacaré Souza (22-3 1 NC) – UFC

04 Yoel Romero (10-1) – UFC

05 Anderson Silva (34-6) – UFC

06 Lyoto Machida (22-7) – UFC

07 Vitor Belfort (24-11) – UFC

08 Gegard Mousasi (37-5-2) – UFC

09 Michael Bisping (27-7) – UFC

10 Tim Kennedy (18-5) – UFC

Honorable Mentions – Thales Leites, Dan Henderson

 

Light Heavyweight

01 Jon Jones (21-1) – UFC – 6 of 6 1st place votes

02 Daniel Cormier (16-1) – UFC

03 Anthony Johnson (19-5) – UFC

04 Alexander Gustafsson (16-3) – UFC

05 Ryan Bader (19-4) – UFC

06 Rashad Evans (19-3-1) – UFC

07 Phil Davis (13-3 1 NC) – Bellator

08 Glover Teixeira (22-4) – UFC

09 Ovince Saint Preux (18-6) – UFC

10 Liam McGeary (10-0) – Bellator

Honorable Mentions – Jimi Manuwa, Rampage Jackson, Patrick Cummins

 

Heavyweight

01 Fabrício Werdum (20-5-1) – UFC – 6 of 6 1st place votes

02 Cain Velasquez (13-2) – UFC

03 Junior dos Santos (17-3) – UFC

04 Stipe Miocic (13-2) – UFC

05 Andrei Arlovski (24-10 1 NC) – UFC

06 Travis Browne (17-3-1) – UFC

07 Ben Rothwell (35-9) – UFC

08 Mark Hunt (10-10-1) – UFC

09 Alistair Overeem (39-14 1 NC) – UFC

10 Frank Mir (18-9) – UFC

Honorable Mentions – Josh Barnett, Aleksey Oilynik

 

Pound-for-Pound

01 Jon Jones (21-1) – UFC – 5 of 6 1st place votes

02 José Aldo (25-1) – UFC

03 Demetrious Johnson (22-2-1) – UFC – 1 of 6 1st place votes

04 Ronda Rousey (12-0) – UFC

05 Chris Weidman (13-0) – UFC

06 T.J. Dillashaw (12-2) – UFC

07 Robbie Lawler (26-10 1 NC) – UFC

08 Fabrício Werdum (20-5-1) – UFC

09 Rafael dos Anjos (24-7) – UFC

10 Joanna Jędrzejczyk (10-1) – UFC

Honorable Mentions – Daniel Cormier, Dominick Cruz, Frankie Edgar, Conor McGregor

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Bellator

Michael Page Not Focusing on Opponent Ahead of Boxing Debut

Harry Davies

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MMA Latest spoke to Bellator’s Michael ‘Venom’ Page, as he makes his boxing debut this Friday at the Hayemaker Ringstar Fight Night.

Page (12-0 MMA) is renowned for his entertaining fight style inside the cage, with most of his knockout and submission victories ending up in highlight reels online, that almost always go viral.

‘MVP’ was supposed to make his boxing debut on the undercard of David Haye vs Tony Bellew in March of this year, but due to ongoing negotiations with Bellator, his debut was delayed. Shortly after Page signed with Haye’s promotion “Hayemaker Ringstar.”

Q: So, Michael, we’re about five days out now from your big boxing debut, and still we have no name of an opponent? Can you break the big news, who will you be fighting next week?

I honestly couldn’t even tell you his name right now! I know I’ve got an opponent, but I haven’t even looked at him because it has changed so many times. I don’t like to pay too much attention to it, because it’s added stress. For me it’s just a case of turning up, and firing punches at whoever is across the ring.

Q: Is this fight 10 or 12 rounds? Given a standard boxing fight is a lot longer than your typical 15-minute MMA bout, has there been an emphasis on cardiovascular work in your training camp?

Depending on the opponent, I think it’s 6-rounds. The preparation has been different, I’m having to stress out my shoulders and core a lot. The kicking distance as well is very different, getting used to having people a bit closer. I’m getting used to the corners of the ring, I’ve done it before but not to this extent so I am familiar of it, but my body wasn’t really used to it.

Q: So, is this kind of like a one fight deal for Haye’s Ringstar promotion? Regardless of this fight’s outcome, will you return to MMA?

Not at all, I’m taking it seriously. Otherwise, I would have just had a super fight against a big name like McGregor did. This is why I can’t just jump into a 12 round fight, I need to adjust my body and get it prepared for boxing.

There’s no future plans yet, I’d like to have an MMA fight again before the end of this year, as I haven’t fought this whole year, but another opportunity for boxing may come up and I might get a chance to jump on that, so it depends.

Q: Were you frustrated that Bellator booked Paul Daley vs. Lorenz Larkin, and if you could send a message to Daley right now what would it be?

I have no interest in him anymore. It feels so pathetic and unnecessary now. I don’t think he deserved that fight with Larkin right after the shocking display he put on in Wembley against Rory MacDonald. But good on him he beat Larkin, however he calls me out immediately after then goes on to say he’s past that fight, it just doesn’t make sense.

Credit – michaelpagemvp – Instagram

Q: A statement we hear a lot is “MVP is the only guy outside the UFC that I want in the UFC” People criticise the talent in Bellator and say you’re fighting nobodies, what do you say back to them?

The amount of times you hear “you shouldn’t fight this person, you should have fought that person.” Everyone’s got an idea of what the correct steps someone should make are, but at the end of the day it’s their career. People are so fickle and easy to forget. If you are a fan of somebody, just be a fan of them regardless of win or loss.

Q: I’ve got to ask about how things are with Bellator, because from the outside looking in it’s quite unclear. How is it relationship at the moment?

Yeah I get on with most of the guys, it’s like a small family. I’ve still got a couple of fights left with them, they’re growing very well, the only problem is I feel like they’re focusing a bit too much on ex UFC fighters. For me it says you’re classing yourself as second best. Bellator generate some amazing superstars and young talent, they should continue to promote them.

You can watch ‘MVP’ make his boxing debut this Friday night, as the Hayemaker Ringstar Fight Night will air at 21:00PM on Dave.

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Exclusive: Andrey Koreshkov eyeing fight with Rory MacDonald

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Former Bellator welterweight champion Andrey Koreshkov is coming off of an interesting past two years. In 2015 he beat current welterweight champion Douglas Lima, via a dominant unanimous decision, in order to win the welterweight title. He returned in 2016 and beat former UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson via another dominant beatdown. It seemed like Koreshkov was going to be the champion for a very long time, making elite fighters look like they had no business being in the cage with him.

Koreshkov’s world came crashing down one night in Isreal. The Russian was beating Douglas Lima in a rematch, he was up 20-18 on the score-cards, and it seemed like he was going to walk away with another successful title defense. Koreshkov forced Lima’s back against the fence and started winging punches at him, Lima started to do the same as he looked to get off the fence, and then it happened, a huge left hook caught Koreshkov on the chin and it was lights-out. Lima was once again champion, and Koreshkov’s reign was cut short.

What was next for Koreshkov after losing the title? Perhaps a move to middleweight? Bellator’s middleweight division has fewer contenders than the welterweight division and could promise a quicker path to the title for the Russian. Koreshkov is a big welterweight, standing at 6’1, he certainly wouldn’t be small in the higher weight class. Speaking to MMA Latest, Koreshkov was quick to shut down the idea of moving up. “No, no, I work hard at welterweight and I’d like to stay there.”

Sticking with welterweight, Koreshkov knew it was going to be tough to get another title shot after his fight with Chidi Njokuani, but he seems to know the key to fighting for the title “It’s not about how many wins, but rather, the quality of my wins”, with that in mind, he promised the gameplan against Njokuani was to “stand and bang”. Koreshkov fulfilled his promise, against Njokuani he came out guns-blazing, giving Njokuani all he could handle on the feet before eventually taking him down and finishing him with some nasty ground and pound.

Koreshkov also got the chance to explain who he’d like to fight next, should he not get a title shot. “I don’t have any favorites, I know that there are a lot of tough fights at my weight class, but if I had to choose, I would say Rory MacDonald.” Unfortunately for Koreshkov, MacDonald is booked against his former opponent Douglas Lima, as the two are set to fight for the Bellator welterweight title in January.

A fight against MacDonald would promise fireworks as the two are known for their ruthless style. There’s a strong chance Koreshkov may get his chance against MacDonald next, as the former champion is certainly either next in line for the shot, or set to fight the loser.

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James Gallagher out of Bellator 187 in Dublin due to injury

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Irish fans will have to wait a little longer to see James Gallagher fighting on home soil after Gallagher suffered a knee injury in preparation for his main event fight with Jeremiah Labiano in Dublin next month. This bad news was first reported by MMAFighting.com.

The 20-year-old from Strabane co. Tyrone who trains in the famous SBG gym with Conor McGregor and Gunnar Nelson among others has set the featherweight division alight since joining Bellator in 2016.  James “The Strabanimal” Gallagher has gone 3-0 with all three of his wins coming by rear naked choke.

After submitting Chinzo Machida, the brother of former UFC light heavyweight champion, Lyoto Machida in Madison Square Garden Gallagher has become a budding star for Bellator.

Due to the youngster’s attitude and potential, many comparisons between Gallagher and UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor have been made by the fans and media which has made Gallagher one of Bellator’s most recognizable names. This notoriety has ultimately led to the young Irishman getting a chance to headline in Dublin this November but this injury has delayed his rise for the time being.

Gallagher on social media Thursday stated that he has suffered an injury to his PCL and LCL in his knee and would be out for the remainder of the year. He has assured fans we would return next year and carry on where he started with “The Jimmy show.”

His longtime rival AJ McKee, who has engaged in a Twitter war with Gallagher after his last fight, will now headline Bellator 187 in the 3 Arena in Dublin on November 10th against Gallagher’s SBG teammate Brian Moore. Moore will be making his third appearance for Bellator in this featherweight clash.

 

 

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