In my opinion the middleweight division has been one of the weaker UFC divisions for a while. This, in part, can be contributed to the dominance of long time champion Anderson Silva, who has "nearly" cleared the division out on more than one occassions. His dominance has caused a few middleweights, namely Rich Franklin, to alter their course and head for greener pastures in other divisions.
Recently, however, the middleweight has seen a surge of new contenders making their way to the front of the division. Some of these contenders include Mark Munoz , Brian Stann, Tim Boetsch, Chris Weidman, and Rousimar Palhares. Who knows. Will this be the batch that knocks off "The Spider", or will it just be another opprotunity for Silva to "nearly" clear out the division?
Three of these aforemention contenders: Munoz, Stann, and Boetsch; have recently found success by dropping down to the middleweight division from the light heavyweight division. This seems to be a common trend of late. light heavyweight's, who have seen little success, dropping and becoming contenders in the middleweight division.
Other light heavyweight's, who have recently debuted at middleweight or have announced their intentions of making the drop to middleweight included: Ronny Markes, Steve Cantwell, Eric Schafer, and Luis Cane. Only one of the fighter's, Ronny Markes, had a winning record in the light heavyweight division.
There has also been a few superstars, who look to revive their carreer by returning to the division. One, Wanderlei Silva, has faired pretty well supporting a 2-1 record with wins of division contender Michael Bisping and newcomer Cung Le. His lone middleweight loss is to division gatekeeper Chris Leben.
A second star, Rich Franklin, returns to his most dominate division, after dabbling at 195 and 205 for nearly three years. He looks to follow in Silva's footstep as he takes on former Strikeforce champion Cung Le.
On the rise....
Ed Herman- Since returning from a nearly two year layoff, he is undefeated and riding a 3 fight winning streak.
Contantino Phillippou- on 3 fight winning streak since dropping debute.
Newbies to watch...
Ronny Markes, 2-0 UFC & 1-0 MW, Wins- Simpson, Vemola
Francis Carmont, 2-0, Wins- Cedenbald, Camozzi
How I Rank click here