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Ranking Review: What happened to Marlon Vera and Montana de La Rosa? – MMA Sports

It may be no exaggeration to say that the UFC has suspicious rankings. The ranking is subjective and therefore seems suspicious. However, in this column, I will point out rankings that I think are obvious mistakes.

Editorial commentary by Peter Parsons

I always find it interesting when there are changes in rankings and fighters who have moved from place to place have not been in recent combat. This was when Casey Kenney and Alexa Grasso moved up to 15th place in the weight class on behalf of Marlon Vera and Montana de La Rosa, respectively, when the UFC rankings were announced last week.

Marlon Vera – Bantamweight, No Rank

Marlon Vera has been replaced by Casey Kenney, who entered the bantamweight ranking in 15th place last week, even though Kenny hasn’t played since October. Vera also did not have a recent battle to justify the change in rankings.

In just over a year from August 2018 to October 2019, Vera has won her fifth straight victory in the UFC Bantamweight category. This was a very strong schedule and finish streak, making Bella one of the top bantamweight candidates.

Vera’s winning streak ended after losing the controversial decision to rank bantamweight Song Yadong in a short featherweight battle in May 2020. O’Malley enters the ranking himself.

Vera snapped a six-game finish streak in bantamweight when she lost her decision to former featherweight champion and top ten bantamweight Jose Aldo in December. The defeat to Aldo, of course, did not drop Bella from the rankings at the time.

Jose Aldo hits Marlon Vera in UFC Vegas 17

Casey Kenney was active in 2020 and fought four times. He lost a unanimous decision in February and lost to the unranked Merab Dvalishvili, who is now ranked 12th.

Since then, he has won the most notable victory on his last expedition in October, three times in a row. This is a unanimous victory over British prospect Nathaniel Wood. The victory over Wood was Kenny’s second fight in October, winning a unanimous decision against Hyria Retan at the beginning of the month at UFC Fight Island.

In my opinion, Vera deserves a ranking given that he has achieved six consecutive bantamweight wins, including his last win against a previously ranked fighter at Sean O’Malley. Kenny looked really good in his last three fights, but he hasn’t defeated the ranked fighters yet. Vera lost the final battle, a defeat of the recent title challenger and the decision against the current Jose Aldo’s sixth-placed bantamweight.

With the UFC 259 card stacked in March, Kenny has a big chance in his next fight against former bantamweight and former champion Dominick Cruz in 11th place. A victory over a man, which many consider to be the largest bantamweight in history, will certainly put Kenny in the rankings.

Alexa Grasso – 15th in flyweight

Like Kenny and Bella, Alexa Grasso replaced 15th place Montana de La Rosa in the women’s flyweight division with one that both fighters haven’t fought recently to create a ranking change.

Grasso fought only once in the flyweight division. She was impressed with her final flyweight debut with Kim Ji-young in August. Grasso was ranked by straw weights, but lost three of the last five in straw weights, despite top-ranked competition. I’m not willing to beat an unranked fighter in the only fight so far in her new division I need a number next to her name.

De La Rosa is defeated by the current 7th place Viviania Laujo. De La Rosa, who participated in the Battle of Arauho, has won four of the last five in a recent victory over Mara Romero Bolera, who was 13th at the time. Her other loss in the flyweight division was against Andrea Lee, who is currently in 11th place.

Viviane Araujo hits Montana de La Rosa
Viviane Araujo hits Montana de La Rosa

In addition to De La Rosa, there are several fighters that are better suited than the flyweight ranking Grasso. Gillian Robertson, Molly McCann and Sabina Altynbe are the three fighters that stand out to me.

Gillian Robertson was recently bounced off the rankings after losing to current 13th place Taila Santos. Robertson, along with Valentina Shevchenko and Caitlin Chokagian, has won the most in the history of the women’s flyweight division with six victories. Canadians have the most submissions and end in the history of the four divisions. Her notable victories include submission victories against Cortney Casey and Molly McCann.

After losing to Robertson in his UFC debut, Molly McCann won three consecutive victories and won the flyweight division. A British veteran lost her ranking after losing a unanimous decision in the final battle with the current 17-1 Tayra Santos.

Sabina Mazo was very impressive on her last expedition with Justine Kish in September. The 23-year-old Colombian hit most of the third round before securing a rear-naked choke in the second half of the third round. This was Mazo’s third straight win in the UFC flyweight division.

There are some big fights in February for the female flyweight fighters mentioned above:

  • Molly McCann vs. Lara Procopio, February 6th
  • (10) Maycee Barber vs. (15) Alexa Grasso, February 13th
  • Gillian Robertson v Miranda Maverick, February 13
  • Sabina Mazo vs. (12) Alexis Davis, February 27
  • Montana de la Rosa vs. My Love Eno Silva, February 27

Ranking Conclusion

If neither fighter has been in combat since last week’s ranking, it makes no sense to change the ranking between the two fighters. Is it related to the fact that Kenny and Grasso fight the ranked fighters?

Chimaev was ranked 15th in the welterweight ranking when the battle with Leon Edwards was first scheduled. I’m not suggesting a conspiracy theory, just suggesting that these fighters will probably come to the minds of voters when a major battle is announced. Or is it because the voting panelists have changed? Either way, I don’t think it looks good in terms of sports and consistency.


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My ranking will look different from other writers and fans who follow the sport closely. This is expected because the rankings are subjective. However, the above example is a ranking that I strongly disagree with. Rankings should be primarily based on results, not perceived potential or popularity.

Some people think that ranking is irrelevant. Ranking is important. When it comes to matchmaking, they are important. When it comes to contract negotiations, they are important.

Let’s continue the ranking conversation. Do you agree or disagree that the above example is an obvious ranking error? Which UFC ranking do you strongly oppose? Please express your thoughts in the comments below.


– MMA Sports

Ranking Review: What happened to Marlon Vera and Montana de La Rosa?

https://www.mmaweekly.com/rankings-review-what-happened-to-marlon-vera-and-montana-de-la-rosa Ranking Review: What happened to Marlon Vera and Montana de La Rosa?

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