For some reason some fighters in the UFC do not get the respect that they deserve. Some fighters have proven themselves, however they constantly find themselves underdogs or underappreciated.
5. Jose Aldo – Yes, I am aware that Jose Aldo is the UFC featherweight champion. I am aware that he is a consensus top-5 pound for pound fighter. However, I do not think people are fully aware of how good Aldo is. The casual fan does not know Jose Aldo like they know other champions. I think Aldo has the potential to be a dominant champion and a real star.
4. Frankie Edgar – I have constantly under rated Frankie Edgar. However, he has two wins over B.J. Penn, a draw with Gray Maynard and a win over Jim Miller. Edgar has earned his spot as one of the best. He is not the pay per view draw that B.J. Penn is, but I do not know why. He is tough as nails, he is an exciting fighter, he is the type of guy fans can connect with, he is always improving, he is usually an underdog, and he is uber talented. There is no reason for fans not to be more pumped when Edgar fights.
3. Frank Mir – I do not think Mir is a top 3 heavyweight right now, but his career is under rated. He has been champion twice. He recovered froma career threatening injury. He beat Brock Lesnar. He is always competitive. He has a sick submission game. He seems to be rejuvenated. I think Mir can still make noise in the division. One has to wonder what would have happened if he had not gotten hurt so badly in that motorcycle accident. We may be talking about Mir as the best heavyweight ever.
2. Jake Shields – I know he underwhelmed against St. Pierre, but it is St. Pierre. Shields’ record speaks for itself. Wins over Dan Henderson, Robbie Lawler, Jason Miller, Paul Daley, Yushin Okami and Carlos Condit are crazy impressive. Shields is still the number 2 welterweight in the world. He probably is under rated because most of his big wins came outside the UFC.
1. Jon Fitch – Fitch seems to be able to handle everyone…except GSP. I think he is a threat to anyone. He is under rated because his style is not increibly exciting. He is a grinder. He has proven his toughness, especially against St. Pierre. He may have been one of the most competitve against the champion. Fitch could benefit from St. Pierre moving to middleweight. I do not know many top 3 fighters in any weight class who have very little draw from the fans, except Fitch. He deserves more respect from fans (and UFC) than he gets.
Others: Dominick Cruz, Jim Miller, Gray Maynard, Nate Marquardt