The featherweight division is one of the most competitive divisions in the UFC right now and has a lot of potential contenders. I am going to rank the top five featherweight fighters as of today.
1. Jose Aldo - Aldo is the current UFC featherweight champion. He has an amazing 21-1 record and has dominated the featherweight division since the WEC days. After being promoted as the UFC featherweight champ in 2010, he has gone on to defend his title three times inside the octagon. With wins over Kenny Florian, Mark Hominick, Urijah Faber and Chad Mendes, Aldo has proved to everyone that he is one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world. His next fight will take place at UFC 153 in Brazil against Erik Koch.
2.Chan-Sung-Jung – The Korean zombie is definitely one of the most exciting fighters in the UFC. Chan Sung Jung has finished all of his fights in the UFC with each of them winning submission of the night or knockout of the night honors. He burst into the UFC in March of 2011 when he submitted Leonard Garcia via twister submission, which was the first of its type in UFC history. The highlight reel wasn’t finished yet though, at UFC 140 he knocked out top contender Mark Hominick in just 7 seconds, then went on to choke out up-and-comer Dustin Poirier. Chan Sung Jung has said that he wants to fight for the title and should expect to face the winner of the Jose Aldo and Erik Koch fight.
3. Ricardo Lamas – Lamas has been on a tear since joining the UFC in 2011. He put on a good performance in his octagon debut when he finished Matt Grice by TKO in the first round. Since then he has gone on to beat Cub Swanson and followed it up with a unanimous decision victory over Hatsu Hioki, who at the time was rising into title contention. Lamas will likely have one more fight to win before he gets a title shot but it should be coming soon if he keeps fighting like he is.
4. Erik Koch - I had to put Koch on this list just because he somehow got a title shot and is the number one contender according to the UFC. Koch is a great fighter but I still wonder why he was given the title shot; Koch has only two wins in the UFC and they are to mid-pack fighters. Maybe it had something to do with timing, but I think there are a few fighters that deserve a title shot a lot more then Koch does. With that being said, we will have to wait and see if he actually deserved his title shot.
5.Chad Mendes - Mendes has already had his chance at a title but I think he will get another one soon. He has some of the best wrestling skills at 145lbs, which will go well with his improved striking that was showcased in his last fight against Cody Mackenzie. Look for Mendes to grind his way back to the top for another title shot. I think Mendes has the best chance at defeating current featherweight kingpin Jose Aldo. Watch for him to make a charge in 2013.