Time to review the five best and worst fighters of August '09...
Top of the Heap
1) Gegard Mousasi
Mousasi busted into most LHW and P4P rankings with his first round starching of Renato 'Babalu' Sobral. He also added the Strikeforce Lightheavyweight strap to his collection of championship belts.
2) Anderson Silva
Anderson Silva silenced his critics and cemented his place at the top of most P4P rankings with a vintage performance against Forrest Griffin. He dismantled the former LHW champ with precision striking, making it appear effortless.
3) Cristiane 'Cyborg' Santos
Dominated Gina Carano en route to the first Strikeforce Women's Championship. She may not have Carano's looks or crossover star potential, but she can sure kick ass.
4) Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira
Ended speculation regarding his failing chin and abilities with a stellar three round performance against Randy Couture. 'Minotauro' is back.
5) Brian Bowles
Ended P4P stalwart Miguel Torres' championship reign with a spectacular first round KO... Torres had been riding a seventeen fight win streak going into the bout. Marky Mark throws some heavy leather.
Honorable Mentions: Nate Marquardt, BJ Penn, Thiago Silva, Todd Duffee
Bottom of the Barrel
1) Josh Barnett
I know most of this happened last month, but seeing as the Affliction event was scheduled for August 1st, I think it’s acceptable to continue disparaging Barnett for an extra month. Way to **** up the most important fight of your career, Josh.
2) Forrest Griffin
It’ll be tough for Griffin to bounce back from his humiliating loss at the hands of AS. People are making too much of his hasty departure from the Octagon, but it certainly didn’t help his image. Maybe he thought Silva was chasing him. I’d run too.
3) Nick Diaz
Now, Diaz is one of my favorite fighters, but he really blew it this month. I mean, a ******* title shot isn’t a good enough reason to lay off the bong for a few weeks? He needs to get his shit together, or get a doctor’s note or something.
4) Chris Leben
In his comeback fight after a loss and subsequent steroid suspension, he’s strangled unconscious in front of his hometown crowd. Ouch. And we all know how Chris reacts in the face of disappointment. He makes Rampage on a energy-drink bender look mild mannered and well-adjusted.
5) Mark Kerr
Was absolutely poleaxed by King Mo at M-1 Breakthrough. The fighter introductions were longer than the fight. It took Lawal all of 25 seconds to reduce ‘The Smashing Machine’ to scrap. Time to call it a day, Mr. Kerr.
On the Bright Side, You Didn’t Quite Make the List: Renato Sobral, Keith Jardine, Kenny Florian, Amir Sadollah, Thales Leites