The Case for Pound-for-Pound Numero Uno!

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  1. The Case for Pound-for-Pound Numero Uno!


    After UFC 100, certain MMA blog-spots still have Anderson "The Sleeping Spider" Silva rated above either Fedor or GSP; very quizzical, in my humble opinion. Given my undying man-love for GSP, I thought I would compare the most recent achievements of all three fighters, by the numbers, to ascertain the pound-for-pound number one. I'm interested in everybody's thoughts.

    GSP:

    Over a span of nine fights, and twenty-nine rounds, GSP has lost - depending on the judge you speak to - two rounds: the TKO loss to Matt Serra, and a round [...or two...] to BJ Penn, both of which he resoundingly avenged. Of those nine fights, five were against current or former champions - BJ Penn [x2], Hughes [x2], Serra [x1] - and each of his opponents, aside from Serra, was ranked as one of the top three WWs in the world [not just the UFC] at the time of the fight. (With BJ Penn actually being in the Top Five P4P at the time.) And since GSP began dominating - say, after Hughes I - he has cleared one of the most dominant divisions in MMA history, in respects to sheer talent. (The only division that really compares is PRIDE HW division from 2003-R.I.P., with Hunt, Cro-Cop, Nog, Barnett, Coleman, Randleman, and, of course, Fee-aye-Dyor.) Finally, if you consider his reign from Anderson's entrance into the UFC, GSP actually holds six wins over UFC champions, as he defeated Sherk as well. GSP has resoundingly destroyed three top-ten P4P opponents in a row, with not a single round lost; in reality, there was less than a few minutes total where he was in a defensive position. No fighter can match this current stretch.

    Anderson:

    During the same period, Anderson Silva has an equal number of fights, with a total of eighteen rounds; of those eighteen rounds, he lost a round to Lutter, a round [...or two...] to Cote, a round to Henderson, and one [boring] round to Leites - a total of four/five rounds lost. Being generous and only giving one round to Cote, this means that Anderson has lost four out of a total eighteen rounds, whereas GSP has lost a total of two [or three] rounds out of a total twenty-nine. In terms of opponents, Anderson holds only three wins against current or former UFC champions - Franklin [x2] and Hendo - to GSP's five/six, and has cleared out the most resoundingly weak division in MMA. Aside from Hendo, none of his opponents during this reign were considered elite at the time he defeated them. (Aside from Franklin, who may have been considered top-ten P4P.) The only thing which reasonably placed Anderson above GSP was his style of finishing fights, and his sheer accuracy and viscousness of striking; however, that Anderson has flown the coop and, with him, his claim to P4P # 1. Given his recent unconvincing performances, reasonable doubt must be raised as to whether Anderson was merely a big fish in a small pond, or was truly one of MMA's elite; a convincing victory over Forrest will certainly go far in deciding this.

    Fedor:

    Our last fighter, Fedor, fought six times during this period, with a total of seven rounds - of those seven rounds, he has not lost one of them; and, in fact, Mark Coleman was his last opponent since Cro-Cop - in 2005, during the OWGP finals - to make it out of the second round. During this period, Fedor holds three wins - Sylvia, Arlovski, and Coleman - over former UFC HW champions; however, Sylvia's recent :09 crushing by Ray Mercer and Arlovski's mauling by a [then] not top-ten opponent remove the significance from these wins. Fedor's recent quality-of-opponent has appreciably lessened his repute: Cro-Cop was his last opponent [...reasonably...] considered as one of the top three HWs in the world, and this is simply not enough to retain his position as the P4P # 1. If Fedor is to usurp GSP once more, he will need a convincing and dominant win over Barnett, in the same vein, or better, as GSP's crushing of his opponents of late. At that point, to retain his simultaneous GOAT and P4P # 1 status, Fee-eye-ee-eye-o-dor will need to mediate the squabbles between M-1/Red Devil and Zuffa in order to dominate the best HWs in the world.

    Ranking:

    1. GSP
    2. Fedor
    3. Anderson


  2. 1. Fedor
    2. GSP
    3. Silva

    Not only does Fedor have the best record of the three, no one has ever really beaten the guy. On top of that, in almost all of his fights, he is the smaller guy, who is outweighed by his competitors. Sometimes he has fought guys that are much bigger and stronger, but he always comes out on top.
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  3. I hear that, but I see only one issue with that argument: it is, more or less, an argument for the greatest of all time, not necessarily the greatest of right now. While Fedor is more accomplished overall, I think you have to take into account recent events; in that light, I put GSP over Fedor. Either way, Anderson is third.

  4. My arguments are going to be lame, because I'm coming with a subjective point of view, as opposed to your objective facts. On paper, I think you've made a very convincing argument for GSP as p4p, even over Feya-dor. I'll start with this statement and see how I work it out. Objectively, based on factual records that you nicely laid out, GSP is p4p, however, in reality, I still feel, key word “feel,” that Fedor is a superior fighter. I may be making a case for GOAT as oppose to current p4p, but I'll finish. GSP has dominated his opponents in a powerful fashion, fact. However, Fedor's dominance are displayed in a spectrum of talents. Fedor has dominated and won via standing strikes and dominated and won through submissions. Fedor's TD's are also legendary, only his TD's are usually performed from standing under hooks, rather then GSP's leg TD's [irrelevant details]. Furthermore, Fedor's dominating wins, are more dominating then GSP's dominating wins, though you could make the case and I think you already have, that GSP have fought higher calibur fighters as of recent.

    It appears I'm more so addressing GOAT then p4p. I think GSP has the potential to be a GOAT on paper, but in my opinion, due to Fedors much wider arsenal of talent, I may always consider Fedor as the G-MMA fighter-OAT, regardless of GSP's more impressive record now and to come, due to Fedors ability to win via whatever position he's in. Whereas, GSP, though unarguably dominating in his style, his style is limited in arsenal, compared to Feya-dors.
    NSCA - CSCS

  5. The problem i have with pound for pound lists are the fact that alot of the people on the list stay in one weight division when I see a pound for pound list I'd like to know how that fighter would do if he didn't have the weight cut. for example GSP is great but does his take downs and control at welterweight translate as well into a different weight class. We know how Fedor does against heavier opponenetsis and Silva has competed in various weight classess also I think GSP's last fight was the only fight where he was at a size disadvantage. This takes nothing from GSP but I think pound for pound should transcend results in one weight class.
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  6. Quote Originally Posted by VolcomX311 View Post
    GSP has dominated his opponents in a powerful fashion, fact. However, Fedor's dominance are displayed in a spectrum of talents. Fedor has dominated and won via standing strikes and dominated and won through submissions. Fedor's TD's are also legendary, only his TD's are usually performed from standing under hooks, rather then GSP's leg TD's [irrelevant details].
    I concede GSP's so-called "homogeneous style of victory" - phenomenal GnP-based attack, with varied striking - but reach a much different conclusion. Allow me to explain. I feel that GSP has dominated a string of opponents in the exact fashion is an endorsement, rather than an indictment, of his [...current...] superiority to Fedor - that is, the fact all of his last six bouts have looked the exact same against six entirely different opponents means he is effectively asserting a game-plan. Let's consider even his last three opponents.

    Thiago is a phenomenal MT-based striker, with huge power and a great sprawl; BJ is obviously BJ, with all the "good and bad" thereto; and Fitch is an elite wrestler with a chin of steel, a great guard, and great TD defense as well - without a doubt, three entirely different, but equally ranked, fighters. Now, the fact there is nary a difference between any of these three fights, down to the amount of TDs landed by GSP and damage taken by him, means he is dominating every type of fighter to such a degree every fight looks the same - i.e., he removes them from their element so efficiently, no other style is necessary. Fedor wins in varied fashions because of two reasons: a) he is proficient in all areas, and; b) he puts himself in situations where they are necessary. GSP, on the other hand, dominates so entirely, that he really does not require a flash KO and/or submission.

  7. Quote Originally Posted by Mulletsoldier View Post
    I concede GSP's so-called "homogeneous style of victory" - phenomenal GnP-based attack, with varied striking - but reach a much different conclusion. Allow me to explain. I feel that GSP has dominated a string of opponents in the exact fashion is an endorsement, rather than an indictment, of his [...current...] superiority to Fedor - that is, the fact all of his last six bouts have looked the exact same against six entirely different opponents means he is effectively asserting a game-plan. Let's consider even his last three opponents.

    Thiago is a phenomenal MT-based striker, with huge power and a great sprawl; BJ is obviously BJ, with all the "good and bad" thereto; and Fitch is an elite wrestler with a chin of steel, a great guard, and great TD defense as well - without a doubt, three entirely different, but equally ranked, fighters. Now, the fact there is nary a difference between any of these three fights, down to the amount of TDs landed by GSP and damage taken by him, means he is dominating every type of fighter to such a degree every fight looks the same - i.e., he removes them from their element so efficiently, no other style is necessary. Fedor wins in varied fashions because of two reasons: a) he is proficient in all areas, and; b) he puts himself in situations where they are necessary. GSP, on the other hand, dominates so entirely, that he really does not require a flash KO and/or submission.
    I totally agree with your assessment of GSP, but you wanted to put a case together for P4P best. Mixedup also went off of what I was saying as fighting against bigger fighters than yourself. How many occasions has Fedor fought fighters 20+ lbs. bigger and heavier than himself? This was the first fight that I've seen GSP being the smaller guy, but not by much at all to make a difference. A true P4P title should transcend different weight classes, as Mixedup mentioned again. I hate to bring boxing into this but look back when Roy Jones Jr. was going through multiple weight classes and destroying everyone in his path.....that guy was a true P4P best at the time. Now if GSP goes to 185 and cleans house (which I think he can) then I will call him the P4P best in the world. But until then, Fedor is IMO, the P4P king for destroying guys up to 140 lbs heavier than himself.

  8. Heavyweights never seem to be mentioned when people start discussing pound-for-pound best fighters for some reason.

  9. Quote Originally Posted by Mulletsoldier View Post
    I hear that, but I see only one issue with that argument: it is, more or less, an argument for the greatest of all time, not necessarily the greatest of right now. While Fedor is more accomplished overall, I think you have to take into account recent events; in that light, I put GSP over Fedor. Either way, Anderson is third.
    I agree with this assessment and your earlier post. GSP has completely dominated 3 guys that have shown up in top 10 P4P lists in Fitch, Alves, and BJ. He's looked untouchable doing so. Fedor's taken out 2 former UFC champs to stay in the discussion as a close #2. He didn't look great against AA, but got the job done. Silva has won by doing very little. While he hasn't been in any trouble in his last two fights, the gap between these guys is so small that you need to look better than he has recently to be #1.

    GSP
    Fedor
    Anderson

    I also see the pack catching up to Fedor and BJ whereas Machida, Anderson, and GSP seem to be pulling away from the pack. In terms of possible losses, I don't see anyone in their respective weightclasses beating GSP, Machida, or BJ, but I could see Brock beating Fedor (not as the favorite) and if Hendo fought the perfect fight, Dan beating Silva (Dan is too wild/reckless for this to be likely).

  10. Quote Originally Posted by jas123 View Post
    I agree with this assessment and your earlier post. GSP has completely dominated 3 guys that have shown up in top 10 P4P lists in Fitch, Alves, and BJ. He's looked untouchable doing so. Fedor's taken out 2 former UFC champs to stay in the discussion as a close #2. He didn't look great against AA, but got the job done. Silva has won by doing very little. While he hasn't been in any trouble in his last two fights, the gap between these guys is so small that you need to look better than he has recently to be #1.

    GSP
    Fedor
    Anderson

    I also see the pack catching up to Fedor and BJ whereas Machida, Anderson, and GSP seem to be pulling away from the pack. In terms of possible losses, I don't see anyone in their respective weightclasses beating GSP, Machida, or BJ, but I could see Brock beating Fedor (not as the favorite) and if Hendo fought the perfect fight, Dan beating Silva (Dan is too wild/reckless for this to be likely).
    I definitely agree with all of this. GSP has taken out, as you said, three top ten pound-for-pound guys in a row; while Anderson, on the other hand, is not fighting top-ten MWs, even. I also forgot about your last paragraph, which is right on as well. And that last paragraph is even more impressive when you consider that GSP's is the best division out of all of them.

  11. Quote Originally Posted by Kegger View Post
    I totally agree with your assessment of GSP, but you wanted to put a case together for P4P best. Mixedup also went off of what I was saying as fighting against bigger fighters than yourself. How many occasions has Fedor fought fighters 20+ lbs. bigger and heavier than himself? This was the first fight that I've seen GSP being the smaller guy, but not by much at all to make a difference. A true P4P title should transcend different weight classes, as Mixedup mentioned again. I hate to bring boxing into this but look back when Roy Jones Jr. was going through multiple weight classes and destroying everyone in his path.....that guy was a true P4P best at the time. Now if GSP goes to 185 and cleans house (which I think he can) then I will call him the P4P best in the world. But until then, Fedor is IMO, the P4P king for destroying guys up to 140 lbs heavier than himself.
    That is simply not what P4P means, though. It means, more or less, who is a better fighter pound-for-pound - i.e., taking weight out of the equation who is a better fighter. And so, it does not mean, "Who can go up or down in the most weight classes" as circumstances very from individual to individual.

  12. fedor - only one loss and it was a fluke.
    gsp - all around great game, not afraid. to many loses tho for me.
    anderson - close close close to gsp but he doesnt have the mind of a champ im looking for. great guy/fighter id take him over any 185 def over gsp at 185 and i hope he tears it up at 205.

  13. Quote Originally Posted by bigwhiteguy29 View Post
    fedor - only one loss and it was a fluke.
    gsp - all around great game, not afraid. to many loses tho for me.
    anderson - close close close to gsp but he doesnt have the mind of a champ im looking for. great guy/fighter id take him over any 185 def over gsp at 185 and i hope he tears it up at 205.
    GSP has 2 losses?
    M.Ed. Ex Phys

  14. My thoughts


    I am a little late to the party here, but let me keep it simple.

    1. GSP, demolished the most plentiful weight class. Not only demolished, but hasnt been challenged since the KO to Serra in 4/07 I believe. Also, (and we will see about this) should be very good in the future at 185

    2. Fedor: Most dominant heavyweight in history. However, recent events IMO tarnish his most recent victories. AA losing to Brett Rogers and Sylvia losing to Ray Mercer make me wonder. I am curious how dominant he will be against Barnett.

    3. Anderson: IMO the best of the bunch, but has not put forth a real good performance. He needs to dominate Forrest IMO to truly get back to serious consideration here

  15. Quote Originally Posted by AE14 View Post
    I am a little late to the party here, but let me keep it simple.

    1. GSP, demolished the most plentiful weight class. Not only demolished, but hasnt been challenged since the KO to Serra in 4/07 I believe. Also, (and we will see about this) should be very good in the future at 185

    2. Fedor: Most dominant heavyweight in history. However, recent events IMO tarnish his most recent victories. AA losing to Brett Rogers and Sylvia losing to Ray Mercer make me wonder. I am curious how dominant he will be against Barnett.

    3. Anderson: IMO the best of the bunch, but has not put forth a real good performance. He needs to dominate Forrest IMO to truly get back to serious consideration here
    I called the AA loss to Rogers. His style is the way to beat AA; hell, that's how you beat most strikers. It's funny how, once again, a lot of the elite HW is not in the UFC (Fedor, Overeem, Rogers, Barnett, Aleks)
    M.Ed. Ex Phys


  16. Quote Originally Posted by AE14 View Post
    I am a little late to the party here, but let me keep it simple.

    1. GSP, demolished the most plentiful weight class. Not only demolished, but hasnt been challenged since the KO to Serra in 4/07 I believe. Also, (and we will see about this) should be very good in the future at 185

    2. Fedor: Most dominant heavyweight in history. However, recent events IMO tarnish his most recent victories. AA losing to Brett Rogers and Sylvia losing to Ray Mercer make me wonder. I am curious how dominant he will be against Barnett.

    3. Anderson: IMO the best of the bunch, but has not put forth a real good performance. He needs to dominate Forrest IMO to truly get back to serious consideration here
    What is it about Anderson that makes you feel he is the best? That is an honest question, by the way. I wonder as I have simply never bought into the Anderson hype. Only one of his opponents - Henderson - was [arguably] top ten P4P at the time of their fight. The MW division is so thin Thailes Leites was essentially picked out of thin air to face him! The case for Anderson, IMO, is by far and away the weakest out of all three when looked at objectively. Any argument for Anderson as P4P #1 is based, in part, on a sipping a strong serving of the UFC's ever-pervasive Kool-Aid.

  17. Quote Originally Posted by Mulletsoldier View Post
    What is it about Anderson that makes you feel he is the best? That is an honest question, by the way. I wonder as I have simply never bought into the Anderson hype. Only one of his opponents - Henderson - was [arguably] top ten P4P at the time of their fight. The MW division is so thin Thailes Leites was essentially picked out of thin air to face him! The case for Anderson, IMO, is by far and away the weakest out of all three when looked at objectively. Any argument for Anderson as P4P #1 is based, in part, on a sipping a strong serving of the UFC's ever-pervasive Kool-Aid.
    I think the victories over Nate, Hendo and 2 over Franklin (also a top 10 P4P at the time) were remarkable in the ease in which he dispatched them. Besides the first rd to Hendo, they were not competitive.

    However, since then, Anderson has been subpar, which could relate to the lack of opponents at this point. He (like GSP at 170) has no one left to face, and a permanent move up in weight, might be the only thing for them

  18. Quote Originally Posted by AE14 View Post
    I think the victories over Nate, Hendo and 2 over Franklin (also a top 10 P4P at the time) were remarkable in the ease in which he dispatched them. Besides the first rd to Hendo, they were not competitive.

    However, since then, Anderson has been subpar, which could relate to the lack of opponents at this point. He (like GSP at 170) has no one left to face, and a permanent move up in weight, might be the only thing for them
    WW was very deep a few years ago when Hughes was still champ, but GSP has dispatched everyone thought to be a contender and in dominating fashion.

    Andy is the king of a division that has been thin for years, especially in the UFC.

    Fedor, like GSP, was at the top of, IMO, the deepest division so far in MMA histroy, which was the Pride HW division. Amazing talent and the rules were much less restrictive. Many don't know this, but he was the underdog against Herring, Nog, and CC when they fought. He has also beaten Olympic medalists, K-1 GP winners, and Nat'l Champion/All-American wrestlers. The only knock that I have on Fedor is that he has only had to rally once in a fight (Fujita had him out on his feet), but that is also a testament to just how good he is.
    M.Ed. Ex Phys


  19. Quote Originally Posted by AE14 View Post
    I think the victories over Nate, Hendo and 2 over Franklin (also a top 10 P4P at the time) were remarkable in the ease in which he dispatched them. Besides the first rd to Hendo, they were not competitive.
    True, but Franklin was not top-ten the second-time around, and neither was Nate. After that, Anderson lost rounds to Lutter, Leites, Cote, etc - i.e.,) poor performances against sub-par opponents. As I said "that" Anderson is really nowhere near #1 P4P.

  20. Quote Originally Posted by Rodja View Post
    Fedor, like GSP, was at the top of, IMO, the deepest division so far in MMA histroy, which was the Pride HW division. Amazing talent and the rules were much less restrictive. Many don't know this, but he was the underdog against Herring, Nog, and CC when they fought. He has also beaten Olympic medalists, K-1 GP winners, and Nat'l Champion/All-American wrestlers. The only knock that I have on Fedor is that he has only had to rally once in a fight (Fujita had him out on his feet), but that is also a testament to just how good he is.
    Yes, 100%. As I say above, the UFC's WW division from 04-on and PRIDE's HW division from 2003-R.I.P were the deepest in MMA history.

  21. My top 5

    1. Fedor
    2. Miguel Torres
    3. Anderson Silva
    4. GSP
    5. BJ Penn

  22. Quote Originally Posted by Troy1982 View Post
    My top 5

    1. Fedor
    2. Miguel Torres
    3. Anderson Silva
    4. GSP
    5. BJ Penn
    Pretty interesting list! I completely disagree as I can name three LWs off the top of my head that are better than BJ, but definitely interesting. I like Torres in the Top Five, but I just could not fathom a scenario that he would be above either Anderson or GSP. What's your assessment? Or is this a personal favorite top five?

  23. torres is so fun. i am glad no one said anything about faber. (even tho he did break his hand)

    only 2 loses?? damn i thought he had one more.

    im still sticking with my choices but they are all really close.

  24. Quote Originally Posted by bigwhiteguy29 View Post
    torres is so fun. i am glad no one said anything about faber. (even tho he did break his hand)

    only 2 loses?? damn i thought he had one more.

    im still sticking with my choices but they are all really close.
    Hughes via Armbar
    Serra via TKO
    M.Ed. Ex Phys


  25. He also avenged both of his losses, and avenged against Hughes twice; both in dominating fashion.

  26. Pound for pound, you must include BJ Penn in this list @ 155. Yes at 170, arguably only 1 fighter proved to be better (i.e. GSP), but at 155, he's mauled through everyone. He will at Florian to that list.

  27. Well, technically, BJ lost three fights in a row at 170 - GSP, Hughes, GSP - which is what precludes him from being top-five P4P, IMO. (The beating GSP put on him knocked him down considerably, and GSP up considerably.) As for LWs, I see both Alvarez or Aoki beating BJ; especially Alvarez.

  28. Alvarez over BJ? Really? I can't see it personally.

    I do agree that the loss to GSP killed his p4p claim, however at 155, I don't see any real threat.

  29. Fedor
    GSP
    Torres

    Fedor and GSp would be interchangeble depending on my mood .

  30. Quote Originally Posted by Mulletsoldier View Post
    Pretty interesting list! I completely disagree as I can name three LWs off the top of my head that are better than BJ, but definitely interesting. I like Torres in the Top Five, but I just could not fathom a scenario that he would be above either Anderson or GSP. What's your assessment? Or is this a personal favorite top five?
    Well Torres and BJ are 2 of my favorite fighters so maybe I'm a bit biased but I put Torres up there because he is so dominant at his weight class and is very exciting, and as for BJ, someone has to beat him at LW to be better than him. I think he is going to destroy KenFlo. Just for the record that is my p4p top 5.
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