The Top 5 Fighters The UFC Needs To Sign In 2011

The Top 5: Fighters The UFC Needs To Sign in 2011
December 13th, 2010 Tim Zeis

honorable mention: Mayhem Miller, Nick Diaz, Paul Daily

5: Shinya Aoki

Shinya Aoki, of Japan, leads off our list at the number 5 postion. Aoki is the current Dream Lightweight Champion and a former Shooto Champion, also for what it’s worth (not very much), he is also the current World Alliance of Mixed Martial Arts Lightweight Champion (WAMMA). At the age of 27, Shinya is just reaching the peak of his career and with a record of 26-5-1 he is considered at top 10 lightweight on almost any ranking board you can find. The “Tobikan Judan” as he is sometimes regarded as, would be a welcomed addition to the UFC’s lightweight division and with Zuffa looking to expand into Asai in the coming years, his presence would certainly be a welcomed one there.

4. Fedor Emilianenko

Next on our list is the man that has long been regarded as the Greatest Fighter of all time. I for one, have never been a believer in the hype that has seemed to follow Emilianenko throughout his career, and following his recent loss, it seems I may have been right. Not to discredit Fedor, he does have an impressive resume with a record of 32-2-1. The problem with the “Last Emperor” is that you have to go all the way back to his 2005 victory over Cro Cop to find a top contender on his path of destruction. That being said, many people still believe in all the is Fedor and it’s time to settle the damn thing once and for all.

3. Bibiano Fernandes

With a record of 8-2, Bibiano Fernandes is one of the top featherweights in the world. He is a K-1, Dream and King of the Cage veteran and the winner of the 2009 Dream Featherweight Grand Prix, making him the first ever Dream Featherweight Champion. With the only two losses on his record going to Urijah Faber and UFC newcomer Kid Yamamoto, he would surely make a big impact in the UFC’s new featherweight division.

2. Eddie Alvarez

Alvarez has a long list of accomplishments, including: The current Bellator Lightweight Champion, former BodogFIGHT Welterweight Champion, 2 time National Prep All-American Wrestler, Sherdog Fight of the Year 2008 and an extensive street fighing background in unsanctioned fights. Eddie is also ranked as the #5 Lightweight on In his last fight, he TKO’ed former UFC lightweight Rodger Huerta in the biggest fight in Bellator’s history.

1. Alistair Overeem

As much as Dana White wants to discredit Overeem by saying that he is not a top ten Mixed Matial Artist, it just simply isn’t true. As a fighter, MMA or Kickboxing, there are not many on the same level as Alistair. The Strikeforce Heavyweight Champion just recently competed in the K-1 World Grand Prix 2010 and took home the world’s most prestigious kickboxing championship with relative ease. At 30 years of age, “The Demolition Man” is begining to enter his own and take care of his body in ways that he failed to do in his youth. Upon entering the UFC’s already staked heavyweight division, Overeem would establish himself as one of the top fighters in no time.

LOL @ Paul Daily

Eddie Alvarez can't sign because he's a Bellator tournament champion, which will keep him under contract until eternity.
Fedor is no longer worth the hassle, and is best beating Werdum in a rematch and retiring happily ever after.
Overeem has to defend his K-1 title according to his contract, and that will eliminate all chances of him fighting for the UFC in 2011.

Aoki and Bibiano possibly. It's always funny to hear that the UFC should sign "x-fighter" when they are under contract with another promotion. It's like telling Strikeforce or Bellator to go sign GSP and Shogun.

Nick Diaz for sure and lol at Paul Daley.
Sing Diaz and Miller and make them fight.

You really need to read over your own articles before you expect anyone else to read them.

I'd like to see mayhem in there as well. Phone Post

I hope I'm not the only one here that thinks Gilbert Melendez should at least get an honorable mention.

I would put Marlon Sandro on that list.

Diaz, Melendez, and Overeem need to given an "offer they can't refuse". The UFC needs these guys. Really.

Fedor would be nice to have, but he's going to peak soon....

Aoki would be subpar against the UFC lightweight division. At best he would be .500, as he's not submitting the Guida's, Penn's, Florian's, Diaz's or Edgar's of the division. Seeing him fight Gomi would be pretty cool, but Aoki wouldn't fair well, overall.


i agree that he may not fair well in the division but he would have selling value in asia, thats how he made my list

Where's Hansen? He'll be in the UFC before Fedor or Aoki are.

mmadailypunch - @knuckleballs

i agree that he may not fair well in the division but he would have selling value in asia, thats how he made my list

The UFC could already do a HUGE show in Japan without Aoki. They've got Akiyama, Wandy, Gomi, Kid, CC, both Nogs, etc. They love pro wrestlers and huge guys, and Lesnar was a pro wrestling champ over there. They'd kill.

I don't think they're concerned much about the Japanese market now though. In terms of who they need to sell to new markets, they need to develop their own Indian and Chinese stars via TUF like they did with Bisping. That's what they're trying to trying to do when they talk of international TUF shows. So who they really need to continue global expansion they probably don't even know yet.

As for who the UFC needs to sell in America, Fedor isn't even on the list. Eddie Alvarez, Kawajiri, Hansen, Overeem, Jacare, Nick Diaz, Lawler, Melendez, JZ, etc. are the guys who would sell for them here because they're all talented and exciting, and they all make business sense financially. The only reason Dana offer Fedor so much money is because he wanted all the independent rankings to have a UFC fighter's name on top. He has that now, so he doesn't care that much about Fedor anymore.

KimboByGhettoplex - Where's Hansen? He'll be in the UFC before Fedor or Aoki are.

 False. He has serious beef with Zuffa.

Thanks for the article.

You make some interesting arguments.

I have to say though, and you or others may feel I'm nit picking here, but how can someone who calls themselves a professional journalist(assuming you do), fail to do a "Using the Computer 101" Spell Check?

It lessens the affect of your "journalism" for me and others I assume.

If you don't care enouh to make sure the words are spelled correctly, maybe you feel the same way about the facts?