FIGHT! Rankings: Strikeforce – Noons vs. Diaz II

(Photo by Keith Mills.)

At FIGHT! Magazine, we believe there is a need for a completely objective and unbiased ranking system for fighters to replace the myriad subjective rankings that have become skewed, in many instances, by fighter popularity. In an effort to address this issue FIGHT! Magazine brings you its computerized rankings system which takes into account a fighters strength of opponent, strength of performance, and frequency of activity.

Full results from the pro fights at Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Noons II can be found here.

After a strong 2009, Strikeforce is just a few cards away from closing out a disappointing 2010 filled with ‘WTF’ matchmaking and wasted opportunities (see: Strikeforce Challengers). While entertaining, Diaz vs. Noons II pitted an elite welterweight against middle-of-the-pack lightweight for Strikeforce’s 170-pound strap. Noons proved, though, that he matched up well with Diaz, pushing the champ en route to a unanimous decision loss. Nick Diaz came into the fight ranked #6 in FIGHT!’s Welterweight Rankings and remained there afterwards. KJ Noons came into the fight ranked #55 in our Lightweight Rankings and stayed put after the fight was in the books – he will be reassigned to Welterweight if he continues to fight at 170#, but given Strikeforce’s recent matchmaking it wouldn’t be surprising for him to get a shot at the lightweight title in the near future.

Speaking of Strikeforce’s Lightweight division, Josh Thomson’s win over Gesias “JZ” Cavalcante put him in line for a rubber match with Gilbert Melendez. Thomson, who leading up to the fight criticized MMA pundits for ranking WEC Lightweight Champion Ben Henderson higher than Cavalcante, came into the bout ranked #30 in FIGHT!’s Lightweight Rankings. The win vaulted Thomson to #13, while Cavalcante fell from #16 to #36 with the loss. Thomson will be disappointed to learned that Henderson, #6 in the division, is still ranked above both of them.

In other welterweight action. Tyron Woodley jumped into the top 25 with his first round stoppage victory over Andre Galvao. Woodley jumped from #49 to #22 following the win, while Galvao slips from #44 to #82. In pro undercard action, James Terry moves from #98 to #81 with his decision win over unranked David Marshall, and Josh McDonald entered our Welterweight Rankings at #69 after his win over unranked Ron Keslar.

No other ranked fighters appeared on the card – FIGHT! is currently gathering data in order to publish rankings in five women’s weight classes in early 2011.

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