Please note the rankings are determined by a panel of MMA Freak writers. Also note the previous rankings (9/5/14) are in parenthesis:

1) Johny Hendricks (1)

Johny Hendricks will face Robbier Lawler earlier then expected when the two have the rematch at UFC 181 on December 6th. Hendricks bicep surgery should mean that Lawler will face the best Hendricks which can lead to some dangerous wrestling to ground and pound.

2) Robbie Lawler (2)

Without a doubt, Robbie Lawler has earned his earlier then expected rematch with Johny Hendricks this coming December 6th at UFC 181. Since Hendricks will supposedly be on top of his game and fully healed, Lawler’s defensive wrestling needs to be at it’s best to win.

3) Rory MacDonald (3)

Rory MacDonald supposedly has the next title shot after his win against Tarec Saffiedine on October 4th according to Dana White.

4) Tyron Woodley (4)

While he won’t be fighting for the title anytime soon, Tyron Woodley did earn his rebound win against Dong Hyun Kim  on August 23rd. A recent rumor that Woodley actually turned down a match against Hector Lombard is a little bothersome, especially if it is true.

5) Carlos Condit (5)

Carlos Condit is still out recovering from the surgery on his injured knee. He still maintains his ranking out of respect more then anything.

6) Hector Lombard (6)

After prospective opponent Tyron Woodley supposedly turned him down, Hector Lombard will face Josh Burkman at UFC 182. Burkman’s experience in World Series of Fighting might help him but Lombard is definitely dangerous against anyone in the UFC.

7) Ben Askren (7)

Ben Askren defeated Nobutatsu Suzuki on August 23rd to win the One FC Welterweight Championship but hasn’t fought since then. He is two fights into his six fight contract with the promotion so expect him to be there at least until the end of 2015 before possibly UFC bound.

8) Matt Brown (8)

The Cinderella story of Matt Brown was stopped by his loss to Robbie Lawler on July 26th from which he still hasn’t rebounded.

9) Jake Shields (9)

Jake Shields made his successful World Series of Fighting promotional debut by submitting WSOF Canadian Champion Ryan Ford. With the very thin WSOF welterweight division, one can only assume that Shields will face the winner of Rousimar Palhares and Jon Fitch.

10) Demian Maia (10)

Staph infections are never fun and anyone who has been through it can sympathize with Demian Maia and his whole experience. One can only hope that he will be fully recovered and return to competition sometime next year.