I hope everyone enjoyed my lightweight rankings, and now I’m back again. It’s time to talk about the featherweights. While there has only been one UFC featherweight champ, the history of the featherweight division grows deeper. To mention the word featherweight and not mention the name Urijah Faber would be ludacris. Faber helped run and popularize the 145 division in the WEC. Faber helped run the division but wasn’t the first champ.
Cole Escovedo defeated Philip Perez via submission (triangle choke) at 3:07 of round 1, to become the first ever WEC Featherweight Champion October 18th 2002 at WEC 5: Halloween Havoc.
Faber defeated Escovedo via TKO (corner stoppage) at the end of Round 2 to win the WEC Featherweight title March 17, 2006 at WEC 19: Undisputed. Faber was the face of the featherweight division and the face of the WEC for over two years running through guys like: Joe Pearson, Dominick Cruz, Jeff Curran and Jens Pulver. Faber was on a roll and everyone thought he was unbeatable until he was derailed on November 5, 2008 at WEC 36: Faber vs Brown.
Mike Brown defeated Faber via TKO (punches) at 2:23 of round 1 to become the new WEC Featherweight champion. Brown defended his title against Leonard Garcia and successfully defended his title against Faber in a rematch June 7, 2009 at WEC 41. WEC 44: Brown vs Aldo would be the end of Brown the the birth of now UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo. Aldo defeated Brown via TKO (strikes) at 1:20 of round 2 to become the new and last WEC Featherweight Champion.
Aldo successfully defended his title in the WEC against Urijah Faber and Manny Gamburyan before the division was moved. The WEC Featherweight division was absorbed into the UFC on November 20, 2010, as part of the UFC-WEC merger. Jose Aldo was promoted to UFC featherweight division. Since then, Aldo has defended his title in grueling fights against Mark Hominick, Kenny Florian and Chad “Money” Mendes.
The UFC featherweight division is a pretty stacked division and now with the additions of Clay Guida and Frankie Edgar, the division is just more stacked these days.
Top 10 rankings only reflect the opinion of myself and no one else.
1. Jose Aldo– Current UFC Champ
2. Pat Curran– Current Bellator Champ
3. Chad Mendes
4. Frankie Edgar
5. Chan Sung Jung
6. Ricardo Lamas
7. Hatsu Hioki
8. Erik Koch
9. Patricio Freire
10. Bibiano Fernandes
Guida did not make my list, but will be a force to be reckoned with as far as I’m concerned.