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MMA pound-for-pound rankings: Leon Edwards continues his rise in the men's top 10

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Leon Edwards extends unbeaten streak to 12 with win over Kamaru Usman (1:24)

Leon Edwards wins via majority decision in his trilogy fight vs. Kamaru Usman in London at UFC 286. (1:24)

Leon Edwards made his first appearance in the ESPN men's pound-for-pound top 10 last August following his stunning dethroning of UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman. Now Edwards has moved into the top five, after defending the belt with another win over Usman on Saturday.

Edwards (21-3, 1 NC) is unbeaten in his last 12 fights, a run of success that extends all the way back to 2015 and his first meeting with Usman, who won a decision that long-ago night in his UFC debut.

Usman (20-3), who was ranked No. 1 by ESPN prior to the loss to Edwards last summer, falls several spots in these latest rankings after his second defeat in a row, a skid that follows a 15-fight winning streak.

The top spot among men continues to be shared by UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev and featherweight champ Alexander Volkanovski. That's one of three ties in the men's rankings, and the shuffling of positions by Edwards and Usman enabled middleweight titlist Alex Pereira to sneak into the rankings.

The women's rankings remain unchanged.

For the ESPN divisional MMA rankings, click here.

Note: Results are current; rankings as of March 21. In order to be eligible for the rankings, a fighter must have competed over the past 12 months or must have an upcoming fight booked.


Men's pound-for-pound rankings

T-1. Islam Makhachev

UFC lightweight champion
Record: 24-1
Last: W (UD) Alexander Volkanovski, Feb. 11, 2023
Next: TBD


T-1. Alexander Volkanovski

UFC featherweight champion
Record: 25-2
Last: L (UD) Islam Makhachev, Feb. 11, 2023
Next: TBD


3. Jon Jones

UFC heavyweight champion
Record: 27-1, 1 NC
Last: W (Sub1) Ciryl Gane, March 4, 2023
Next: TBD


4. Leon Edwards

UFC welterweight champion
Previous ranking: 7
Record: 21-3, 1 NC
Last: W (MD) Kamaru Usman, March 18, 2023
Next: TBD


5. Israel Adesanya

UFC middleweight
Record: 23-2
Last: L (TKO5) Alex Pereira, Nov. 12, 2022
Next: April 8 vs. Alex Pereira


6. Charles Oliveira

UFC lightweight
Record: 33-9, 1 NC
Last: L (Sub2) Islam Makhachev, Oct. 22, 2022
Next: May 6 vs. Beneil Dariush


7. Kamaru Usman

UFC welterweight
Previous ranking: 4
Record: 20-3
Last: L (MD) Leon Edwards, March 18, 2023
Next: TBD


T-8. Brandon Moreno

UFC flyweight champion
Record: 21-6-2
Last: W (TKO3) Deiveson Figueiredo, Jan. 21, 2023
Next: TBD


T-8. Aljamain Sterling

UFC bantamweight champion
Record: 22-3
Last: W (TKO2) TJ Dillashaw, Oct. 22, 2022
Next: May 6 vs. Henry Cejudo


T-10. Alex Pereira

UFC middleweight champion
Previous ranking: Unranked
Record: 7-1
Last: W (TKO5) Israel Adesanya, Nov. 12, 2022
Next: April 8 vs. Israel Adesanya


T-10. Robert Whittaker

UFC middleweight
Record: 24-6
Last: W (UD) Marvin Vettori, Sept. 3, 2022
Next: TBD


Other fighters receiving votes: Dustin Poirier and Jiri Prochazka.


How our panel voted

Brett Okamoto: 1. Islam Makhachev; 2. Alexander Volkanovski; 3. Jon Jones; 4. Israel Adesanya; 5. Leon Edwards; 6. Robert Whittaker; 7. Charles Oliveira; 8. Aljamain Sterling; 9. Brandon Moreno; 10. Kamaru Usman.

Marc Raimondi: 1. Jones; 2. Makhachev; 3. Volkanovski; 4. Edwards; 5. Oliveira; 6. Adesanya; 7. Sterling; 8. Moreno; 9. Usman; 10. Alex Pereira.

Megan Anderson: 1. Jones; 2. Volkanovski; 3. Makhachev; 4. Adesanya; 5. Edwards; 6. Oliveira; 7. Usman; 8. Whittaker; 9. Pereira; 10. Moreno.

Carlos Contreras Legaspi: 1. Volkanovski; 2. Makhachev; 3. Jones; 4. Edwards; 5. Oliveira; 6. Adesanya; 7. Usman; 8. Jiri Prochazka; 9. Moreno; 10. Pereira.

Eddie Maisonet III: 1. Volkanovski; 2. Makhachev; 3. Jones; 4. Adesanya; 5. Oliveira; 6. Edwards; 7. Dustin Poirier; 8. Usman; 9. Moreno; 10. Sterling.

Jeff Wagenheim: 1. Makhachev; 2. Volkanovski; 3. Jones; 4. Edwards; 5. Oliveira; 6. Adesanya; 7. Pereira; 8. Sterling; 9. Usman; 10. Moreno.


Women's pound-for-pound rankings

1. Amanda Nunes

UFC bantamweight and featherweight champion
Record: 22-5
Last: W (UD) Julianna Peña, July 30, 2022
Next: TBD


2. Zhang Weili

UFC strawweight champion
Record: 23-3
Last: W (Sub2) Carla Esparza, Nov. 12, 2022
Next: TBD


3. Valentina Shevchenko

UFC flyweight
Record: 22-4
Last: L (Sub4) Alexa Grasso, March 4, 2023
Next: TBD


4. Cris Cyborg

Bellator featherweight champion
Record: 26-2, 1 NC
Last: W (UD) Arlene Blencowe, April 23, 2022
Next: TBD


5. Alexa Grasso

UFC flyweight champion
Record: 16-3
Last: W (Sub4) Valentina Shevchenko, March 4, 2023
Next: TBD


6. Julianna Peña

UFC bantamweight
Record: 11-5
Last: L (UD) Amanda Nunes, July 30, 2022
Next: TBD


T-7. Jessica Andrade

UFC flyweight
Record: 24-10
Last: L (Sub2) Erin Blanchfield, Feb. 18, 2023
Next: TBD


T-7. Rose Namajunas

UFC strawweight
Record: 11-5
Last: L (SD) Carla Esparza, May 7, 2022
Next: TBD


9. Erin Blanchfield

UFC flyweight
Record: 11-1
Last: W (Sub2) Jessica Andrade, Feb. 18, 2023
Next: TBD


10. Carla Esparza

UFC strawweight
Record: 19-7
Last: L (Sub2) Zhang Weili, Nov. 12, 2022
Next: TBD


Other fighters receiving votes: Kayla Harrison, Amanda Lemos and Raquel Pennington.


How our panel voted

Brett Okamoto: 1. Amanda Nunes; 2. Valentina Shevchenko; 3. Zhang Weili; 4. Cris Cyborg; 5. Rose Namajunas; 6. Alexa Grasso; 7. Jessica Andrade; 8. Julianna Peña; 9. Kayla Harrison; 10. Erin Blanchfield.

Marc Raimondi: 1. Nunes; 2. Cyborg; 3. Shevchenko; 4. Zhang; 5. Grasso; 6. Peña; 7. Namajunas; 8. Andrade; 9. Blanchfield; 10. Esparza.

Megan Anderson: 1. Nunes; 2. Zhang; 3. Cyborg; 4. Shevchenko; 5. Grasso; 6. Esparza; 7. Namajunas; 8. Blanchfield; 9. Andrade; 10. Raquel Pennington.

Carlos Contreras Legaspi: 1. Nunes; 2. Shevchenko; 3. Zhang; 4. Cyborg; 5. Grasso; 6. Peña; 6. Harrison; 7. Esparza; 8. Andrade; 10. Blanchfield.

Eddie Maisonet III: 1. Nunes; 2. Zhang; 3. Grasso; 4. Shevchenko; 5. Peña; 6. Cyborg; 7. Blanchfield; 8. Andrade; 9. Namajunas; 10. Lemos.

Jeff Wagenheim: 1. Nunes; 2. Zhang; 3. Shevchenko; 4. Cyborg; 5. Grasso; 6. Peña; 7. Blanchfield; 8. Andrade; 9. Esparza; 10. Namajunas.