USA TODAY Sports/MMA Junkie rankings, June 30: Dustin Poirier on the up (and up)

Pound For Pound Rankings

Jones is one of the greatest fighters of all time, and though he was pushed to the limit by Dominick Reyes, he retained his belt and now returns to the top of MMA Junkie’s pound-for-pound rankings.

If you had ‘global pandemic’ on your ‘Why Khabib vs. Tony Ferguson will be canceled for a fifth time’ bingo card, congratulations.

Upcoming Fight: vs Stipe Miocic | Aug 15, 2020 – UFC 252: Miocic vs. Cormier 3

Cormier admits he shied from the gameplan at UFC 241, and it cost him dearly in a loss to Stipe Miocic. Now, at age 41, Cormier has decided to give it one more go against Miocic before calling it a career.

After fulfilling his dream of adding a global belt to his collection of championships, ‘Mighty Mouse’ now looks to add ONE’s flyweight belt to the grand prix title he already earned.

Adesanya got to add Yoel Romero to his list of career victories, even if it wasn’t exactly a thrilling affair, and it appears the undefeated Paulo Costa is up next.

Bader’s heavyweight title defense with Cheick Kongo ended in rather odd fashion, but now it’s back to light heavyweight to defend that belt.

Poirier continues to be one of the most exciting fighters in the game, and his grit is immeasurable – qualities he hopes will net him another UFC title shot in the near future.

Gaethje debuts on the pound-for-pound list after an absolutely brilliant dismantling of Tony Ferguson and could take an even bigger leap if he’s able to unseat Khabib Nurmagomedov.

Costa has made clear his disdain for UFC champ Israel Adesanya, and it appears the two are set to meet sometime this summer to work out their differences.

Reyes’ lone career loss came to the man widely regarded as the greatest of all-time – and some people believe ‘The Devastator’ should have walked away with the win.

Honorable Mentions

USA TODAY Sports/MMA Junkie rankings, June 30: Dustin Poirier on the up (and up)

Dustin Poirier came away with a thrilling victory in an instant classic at UFC on ESPN 12 and, as a result, is moving up on two lists.

In the “Fight of the Night” that is sure to remain a “Fight of the Year” candidate, Poirer earned a gutsy unanimous decision over Dan Hooker in this past Saturday’s main event at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. The victory put Poirier (26-6 MMA, 18-5 UFC) back in the win column after he lost to lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov last September.

For his efforts, Poirier, who’s won five of his last six fights, has made some major moves in the latest USA TODAY Sports/MMA Junkie rankings. At lightweight, Poirier moves from No. 4 to No. 2, jumping ahead of current interim champ Justin Gaethje, whom he holds a head-to-head victory over. And on the pound-for-pound list, Poirier goes from honorable mention to No. 10, also ahead of Gaethje and dropping Tony Ferguson down to honorable mention status.

You can check out all the moves to come out of UFC on ESPN 12 in the dropdowns above.

Ranking Criteria

The rankings take into account a fighter’s wins/losses, quality of competition, finishing rate/dominance and frequency of fights.

Fighters are no longer eligible to be ranked after they’ve been inactive for 24 months, either due to injuries, drug/conduct suspensions, contract disputes or self-imposed hiatuses.

Fighters serving drug/conduct suspensions are eligible to be ranked, so long as they’re not inactive for more than 24 months.

To the best of our ability, fighters will be ranked in their primary weight class. Catchweight fights and bouts outside the fighter’s primary weight class can have a positive or negative impact on the ranking. However, non-titleholders can be ranked in only one weight class at a given time, and in most cases, they won’t be ranked in a new weight class until they’ve had their first fight at that weight.

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