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411 Middleweight MMA Rankings: Yoel Romero, Israel Adesanya, More

December 3, 2019 | Posted by Jonathan Solomon
Yoel Romero UFC 221 - UFC 225

411’s Official MMA Rankings

Middleweight Division (185 pounds)


1) Israel Adesanya (18-0)

Height: 6’4

Birthday: July 22, 1989

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Robert Whittaker – Win via KO (strikes) – UFC 243 – October 6, 2019

– vs. Kelvin Gastelum – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC 236 – April 13, 2019

– vs. Anderson Silva – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC 234 – February 9, 2019

– vs. Derek Brunson – Win via TKO (strikes) – UFC 230 – November 3, 2018

– vs. Brad Tavares – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC TUF Finale – July 6, 2018

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown

Comment: It’s looking more likely that Adesanya’s first title defense in the new year comes against Yoel Romero. Paulo Costa is on the sidelines due to a bicep injury leaving a spot open early in 2020. Romero appears more than willing to jump into action and the champion has publicly said he’d welcome a fight with Romero.



2) Robert Whittaker (20-5)

Height: 6′

Birthday: December 20, 1990

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Israel Adesanya – Loss via KO (strikes) – UFC 243 – October 6, 2019

– vs. Yoel Romero – Win via decision (split) – UFC 225 – June 9, 2018

– vs. Yoel Romero – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC 213 – July 8, 2017

– vs. Jacare Souza – Win via TKO (strikes) – UFC on Fox – April 15, 2017

– vs. Derek Brunson – Win via TKO (strikes) – UFC Fight Night – November 26, 2016

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown



3) Paulo Costa (13-0)

Height: 6’0

Birthday: April 21, 1991

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Yoel Romero – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC 241 – August 17, 2019

– vs. Uriah Hall – Win via TKO (strikes) – UFC 226 – July 7, 2018

– vs. Johny Hendricks – Win via TKO (strikes) – UFC 217 – November 4, 2017

– vs. Oluwale Bamgbose – Win via TKO (strikes) – UFC 212 – June 3, 2017

– vs. Garreth McLellan – Win via TKO (strikes) – UFC Fight Night – March 11, 2017

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown

Comment: Not bad for one win last year and one win this year. Costa was the winner in one of the best fighters of the year, the war with Yoel Romero at UFC 241. Unfortunately for the Brazilian, an injury will cost him the chance to get right back in the cage early in 2020. It appears that if he’s ready to return by the middle of the year, he may be offered a title fight then. The question at that point is, who is the champion?



4) Yoel Romero (13-4)

Height: 5’10

Birthday: April 30, 1977

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Paulo Costa – Loss via decision (unanimous) – UFC 241 – August 17, 2019

– vs. Robert Whittaker – Loss via decision (split) – UFC 225 – June 9, 2018

– vs. Luke Rockhold – Win via KO (strikes) – UFC 221 – February 11, 2018

– vs. Robert Whittaker – Loss via decision (unanimous) – UFC 213 – July 8, 2017

– vs. Chris Weidman – Win via KO (flying knee) – UFC 205: Alvarez vs. McGregor – November 12, 2016

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown

Comment: Despite the fact that Romero is 0-2 in his last two fights, 1-3 in his last four fights, we’re inching forward to an Adesanya/Romero fight in the new year. Romero will turn 43 years old in the spring, and even with the losses, he’s not been embarrassed in any of those fights and each have gone the distance. He remains one of the most dangerous fighters in the division and that reputation may be the prime reason Adesanya is so interested in fighting him.



5) Darren Till (18-2-1)

Height: 6’0

Birthday: December 24, 1992

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Kelvin Gastelum – Win via decision (split) – UFC 244 – November 2, 2019

– vs. Jorge Masvidal – Loss via KO (punch) – UFC Fight Night – March 16, 2019

– vs. Tyron Woodley – Loss via submission (D’Arce choke) – UFC 228 – September 8, 2018

– vs. Stephen Thompson – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC Fight Night – May 27, 2018

– vs. Donald Cerrone – Win via TKO (strikes) – UFC Fight Night – October 21, 2017

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown

Comment: Till was knocked out back in March by Jorge Masvidal and seeing his momentum come to a screeching halt at welterweight, chose to return to 185-pounds. His return to the weight class at UFC 244 last month went well. Although he beat Kelvin Gastelum by split decision, there was no controversy about the decision – Till looked good. He immediately jumps into the fray atop this division and the sky is the limit for him in 2020.



6) Jared Cannonier (13-4)

Height: 5’11

Birthday: March 3, 1984

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Jack Hermansson – Win via TKO (strikes) – UFC Fight Night – September 28, 2019

– vs. Anderson Silva – Win via TKO (leg kick) – UFC 237 – May 11, 2019

– vs. David Branch – Win via TKO (strikes) – UFC 230 – November 3, 2018

– vs. Dominick Reyes – Loss via TKO (strikes) – UFC Fight Night – May 19, 2018

– vs. Jan Blachowicz – Loss via decision (unanimous) – UFC on Fox – December 16, 2017

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown

Comment: Cannonier is now more than a year into his middleweight career and he’s looked amazing. In that time, he has finished David Branch, Anderson Silva and Jack Hermansson with the longest fight of the three going 39-seconds into the second round. He doesn’t have the name value of guys like Till, Romero, Costa or Whittaker, but Cannonier should be considered in the same breath as a top contender capable of making life hell for those fighters and Adesanya.



7) Kelvin Gastelum (15-5, 1 NC)

Height: 5’9

Birthday: October 24, 1991

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Darren Till – Loss via decision (split) – UFC 244 – November 2, 2019

– vs. Israel Adesanya – Loss via decision (unanimous) – UFC 236 – April 13, 2019

– vs. Jacare Souza – Win via decision (split) – UFC 224 – May 12, 2018

– vs. Michael Bisping – Win via KO (punch) – UFC Fight Night – November 25, 2017

– vs. Chris Weidman – Loss via submission (arm triangle choke) – UFC on Fox – July 22, 2017

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown

Comment: Gastelum’s 2019 will be remembered for two things- 1) the fight of the year against Israel Adesanya and 2) losing all of the momentum he had entering the year. The loss to Adesanya was followed by a split decision loss to Darren Till. Plus, Gastelum received a $1,000 fine by the New York State Athletic Commission for apparently using a coach to balance during the weigh-in. He just turned 28-years-old, and has only been finished one time (by submission against Chris Weidman) – he remains as dangerous a middleweight as anyone else.



8) Jack Hermansson (20-5)

Height: 6’1

Birthday: June 10, 1988

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Jared Cannonier – Loss via TKO (strikes) – UFC Fight Night – September 28, 2019

– vs. Jacare Souza – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC on ESPN – April 27, 2019

– vs. David Branch – Win via submission (guillotine choke) – UFC on ESPN – March 30, 2019

– vs. Gerald Meerschaert – Win via submission (guillotine choke) – UFC on Fox – December 15, 2018

– vs. Thales Leites – Win via TKO (strikes) – UFC 224 – May 12, 2018

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown



9) Derek Brunson (20-7)

Height: 6’1

Birthday: January 4, 1984

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Ian Heinisch – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC 241 – August 17, 2019

– vs. Elias Theodorou – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC Fight Night – May 4, 2019

– vs. Israel Adesanya – Loss via TKO (strikes) – UFC 230 – November 3, 2018

– vs. Jacare Souza – Loss via KO (head kick and punches) – UFC on Fox – January 27, 2018

– vs. Lyoto Machida – Win via KO (punch) – UFC Fight Night – October 28, 2017

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown



10) Gegard Mousasi (46-7-2)

Height: 6’0

Birthday: August 1, 1985

Currently Fighting With: Bellator MMA

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Lyoto Machida – Win via decision (split) – Bellator MMA – September 28, 2019

– vs. Rafael Lovato Jr. – Loss via decision (unanimous) – Bellator MMA – June 22, 2019

– vs. Rory MacDonald – Win via TKO (strikes) – Bellator 206 – September 29, 2018

– vs. Rafael Carvalho – Win via TKO (strikes) – Bellator 200 – May 25, 2018

– vs. Alexander Shlemenko – Win via decision (unanimous) – Bellator 185 – October 20, 2017

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown



11) Ian “Hurricane” Heinisch (13-2)

Height: 5’11

Birthday: August 5, 1988

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Derek Brunson – Loss via decision (unanimous) – UFC 241 – August 17, 2019

– vs. Antonio Carlos Jr. – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC Fight Night – May 18, 2019

– vs. Cezar Ferreira – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC Fight Night – November 17, 2018

– vs. Justin Sumter – Win via KO (elbows) – DW Contender Series – July 31, 2018

– vs. Gabriel Checco – Win via KO (strikes) – LFA 39 – May 4, 2018

Next scheduled appearance:

– vs. Omari Akhmedov – UFC 245 – December 14, 2019



12) Rafael Lovato Jr. (10-0)

Height: 6’3

Birthday: June 25, 1983

Currently Fighting With: Bellator MMA

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Gegard Mousasi – Win via decision (unanimous) – Bellator – June 22, 2019

– vs. John Salter – Win via submission (rear naked choke) – Bellator 205 – September 21, 2018

– vs. Gerald Harris – Win via submission (armbar) – Bellator 198 – April 28, 2018

– vs. Chris Honeycutt – Win via decision (unanimous) – Bellator 189 – December 1, 2017

– vs. Mike Rhodes – Win via submission (rear naked choke) – Bellator 181 – July 14, 2017

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown



13) Lyoto Machida (26-9)

Height: 6’1

Birthday: May 30, 1978

Currently Fighting With: Bellator MMA

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Gegard Mousasi – Loss via decision (split) – Bellator MMA – September 28, 2019

– vs. Chael Sonnen – Win via TKO (strikes) – Bellator MMA – July 14, 2019

– vs. Rafael Carvalho – Win via decision (split) – Bellator 213 – December 15, 2018

– vs. Vitor Belfort – Win via KO (front kick) – UFC 224 – May 12, 2018

– vs. Eryk Anders – Win via decision (split) – UFC Fight Night – February 3, 2018

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown



14) Omari Akhmedov (19-4-1)

Height: 6’

Birthday: October 12, 1987

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Zak Cummings – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC 242 – September 7, 2019

– vs. Tim Boetsch – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC Fight Night – March 9, 2019

– vs. Marvin Vettori – Draw via decision (split) – UFC 219 – December 30, 2017

– vs. Abdul Razak Alhassan – Win via decision (split) – UFC Fight Night – May 28, 2017

– vs. Kyle Noke – Win via decision (unanimous) – UFC Fight Night – November 26, 2016

Next scheduled appearance:

– vs. Ian Heinisch – UFC 245 – December 14, 2019



15) Edmen Shahbazyan (11-0)

Height: 6’2

Birthday: November 20, 1997

Currently Fighting With: UFC

Last 5 fights:

– vs. Brad Tavares – Win via KO (head kick) – UFC 244 – November 2, 2019

– vs. Jack Marshman – Win via submission (rear naked choke) – UFC 239 – July 6, 2019

– vs. Charles Byrd – Win via TKO (strikes) – UFC 235 – March 2, 2019

– vs. Darren Stewart – Win via decision (split) – UFC TUF Finale – November 30, 2018

– vs. Antonio Jones – Win via TKO (strikes) – DW Contender Series – July 17, 2018

Next scheduled appearance:

– Unknown