Brackets? We don't need no stinking brackets ... actually, we do, at least according to Melvin Guillard.
It ain't easy being a top contender in the 155-pound division. If you are, you're one of many and your spot in the pecking order is up for constant debate.
That's the issue currently facing "The Young Assassin," who thinks he should be ranked a lot higher than his current standing. Example (via ESPN):
"I honestly felt after the [Evan] Dunham fight that it was going to move me a lot higher. But they're still ranking guys like Dennis Siver ahead of me, and I knocked this chump out in less than two minutes. He even called me out again, trying to fight me again. But a lot of fights aren't making sense, and I don't really have a choice [but to fight Roller] because of the traffic jam with the weight class."
Indeed, Guillard destroyed Evan Dunham back in January and yet, according to the rankings, it's like the fight never happened at all.
That just doesn't seem right.
No one likes a complainer that doesn't offer up a solution of his own, though, and thankfully that's not the route old Melvin has taken. He's got a great idea for the crowded lightweight division -- a grand prix tournament.
"Edgar and Maynard still haven't fought again, so right now everybody's at a standstill. The only solution I see is them doing a 155-pound grand prix tournament, and putting everybody in brackets and weeding the losers to giving a true No. 1 contender a fight here in the next year or so."
It might take some convincing for UFC President Dana White to ever do such a thing but let's be real -- who wouldn't want to see this?
We'll play copy cat of the Strikeforce grand prix and run an eight man field and see how it shakes out.
Taking Frankie Edgar (the division champion) and Gray Maynard (the set-in-stone number one contender) out of the equation, here are the top eight lightweights according to the USA Today/SB Nation consensus rankings (note: this is as of May 27, 2011):
Based on those rankings, which will be updated within the next few days for the month of June, so this will more than likely change, possibly drastically, here is what the match-ups would look like, for now:
Jim Miller vs. Ben Henderson
Anthony Pettis vs. Dennis Siver
Sean Sherk vs. George Sotiropoulos
Melvin Guillard vs. Clay Guida
Conveniently enough, Miller and Henderson are already set to square off at UFC on Versus 5 this coming Aug. 14 in Milwaukee. The rest of the proposed match-ups are fresh, though, and intriguing to say the least.
This is all conjecture and done in good fun, of course, but Guillard has brought up an interesting proposition for a weight class that is badly in need of some order.
What do you think, Maniacs? You up for this?
If you are and you don't like the first round match-ups based on the rankings currently in place, feel free to put together a bracket and include it in the comments section below.