Divisional rankings: Light heavyweight

Daniel Cormier defeated Volkan Oezdemir at UFC 220 to retain the light heavyweight title. AP Photo/Gregory Payan

Check out my rankings within each division by clicking on the links below.

Who is the best fighter regardless of weight class? See ESPN's pound-for-pound rankings. Plus, check out our women's pound-for-pound rankings.

Note: Results through Feb. 12, 2018

Divisional Rankings

Heavyweight | Light heavyweight
Middleweight | Welterweight | Lightweight
Featherweight | Bantamweight | Flyweight
Women's bantamweight | Women's strawweight


1. Daniel Cormier (19-2)
For record-keeping purposes, Cormier's lost to Jon Jones in July 2014 does not exist. The result has been officially wiped clean. And with another title defense under his belt, Cormier is the No. 1 light heavyweight in the world.
Next: UFC 226 on July 7, vs. Stipe Miocic

2. Jon Jones (23-1)
At long last, Jones is officially out of the dog house and back to what he does best: Dominate opponents in the Octagon. His finish over Daniel Cormier is instantly one of the top fights of his career. And he's still in his prime.
Next: TBD

3. Alexander Gustafsson (18-4)
Not that Gustafsson's place within the division was ever really in doubt, but he re-solidified his place near the top with a dominant showing over Glover Teixeira in May. As of right now, Gustafsson's claim to fame is two very close losses to Jones and Cormier. Will he be able to finally reach the peak in the near future?
Next: TBD

4. Ryan Bader (24-5)
So far, so good in the Bellator cage for Ryan Bader. Two fights in, he's knocked off a defending champion in Phil Davis and collected his first defense against Linton Vassell. Bader has an opportunity to hold this belt for a long time.
Next: Bellator 199 on May 12, vs. Muhammed Lawal

5. Volkan Oezdemir (15-2)
Oezdemir looked slightly out of his league against Daniel Cormier, but only on the floor. As long as it was on the feet, the Swiss contender's talent was obvious. He needs to develop a few aspects of his game, but Oezdemir does not appear at risk to fall off the map in this division.
Next: TBD

6. Glover Teixeira (27-6)
Teixeira made quick work of light heavyweight prospect Misha Cirkunov in December, and injected some new life into his career in the process. He's still a long shot to win a UFC title, but this win at least keeps him in that conversation.
Next: Next: TBD

7. Phil Davis (18-4)
Davis's Bellator MMA title reign came to a swift end in June, when he fell to Bader via split decision. It was a close fight, but now you have to wonder if Davis has the same problem he used to have in the UFC: He can beat the rest, but can he beat the best?
Next: TBD

8. Jimi Manuwa (17-3)
Manuwa went into UFC 214 already considered the division's No. 1 contender. That means he had more to lose than to gain against Volkan Oezdemir and unfortunately for him, the latter took place. He can recover from this, but holy smokes. Not what he drew up.
Next: UFC Fight Night on March 17, vs. Jan Blachowicz

9. Ovince St. Preux (22-10) St. Preux has made a career out of rolling through the unranked foes of the division. He's had a much harder time against the cream of the crop. But the sheer numbers in his resume alone are impressive. He now has 10 wins in the Octagon.
Next: UFC Fight Night on Feb. 24, vs. Ilir Latifi

10. Mauricio Rua (25-10) Few have accomplished more in this division than Shogun. At 35, he's not what he once was, but he's working on a three-fight win streak. He remains relevant in the rankings, even this late in his career.
Next: TBD