I haven't heard one member of Affliction, EliteXC, or Strikeforce complain.
Of course you haven't heard Affliction guys complain. They had one PPV, in which they paid their fighters so much that they lost money on the PPV.
Neither is popularity. Drew Fickett has beaten Kenny Florian and Josh Koscheck. Both ranked top 10. Drew's not ranked. Looks like EliteXC ain't the most popular bunch.
Yes Fickett beat these guys YEARS ago. This was in their 5th and 3rd fights respectively. Since then he has lost to Parisyan, Burkman, and Richard Villes (who?).
It matters how stable the UFCs WW division stays, and which WW fighters EliteXC brings in. Affliction, and DREAM are young and building also. If they sign WW power you can bet that Shields will play in their yard.
Yes the UFC WW division is the one that's going to drop off. Not the companies that can't turn a profit like Affliction. Why would shields go to DREAM where he would make significantly less money? American fighters don't make big money in dream.
Or maybe as Roger Huerta recently put it "be loyal to an organization who will be loyal to him".
Do you honestly think Huerta deserves the money he's asking for? If Huerta was claiming to be a top LW, you'd attack him. Since he fits your argument you decided to use him. Huerta will lose to Florian, and then sign for less money.
If it wasn't for the money issue they would have kept Tito Ortiz.
I am a Tito Ortiz fan, but he's not a top fighter anymore. He's a top name, but not at the level he use to be at. He's like many great fighters, and he doesn't know when to quit.
I think Eddie Alvarez deserves top 5 rank.
Once again no one that matters agrees with you. Maybe it's good that it doesn't matter what you think.