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UFC flyweight rankings: Alexandre Pantoja defends top spot with big win at UFC 296

RankFighterRecordLast 3 Results
#1Alexandre Pantoja27-5W-W-W
#2Brandon Moreno21-7-2L-W-W
#3Amir Albazi17-1W-W-W
#4Brandon Royval15-7L-W-W
#5Matheus Nicolau19-4-1L-W-W
#6Manel Kape19-6W-W-W
#7Kai Kara-France24-11L-L-W
#8Muhammad Mokaev11-0W-W-W
#9Tim Elliott20-13-1W-L-W
#10Matt Schnell16-7L-W-L

The UFC flyweight rankings are a showcase of the very best fighters in the 125-pound divisions. While the weight class may often not get the respect it deserves, it has always featured some of the most well-rounded and fastest MMA fighters on the planet.

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With that in mind, here is the official Sportsnaut top-10 for the organization’s flyweight divisions.

Latest UFC flyweight rankings top 10

10. Matt Schnell (16-7)

ufc flyweight rankings
Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

While Matt Schnell has been a consistent part of the rankings for a couple of years, staying near the top has proven difficult as he has flipped between wins and losses over the last few years. He has lost two of his last three and needs a win in his next fight or risk quickly falling out of the UFC flyweight rankings.

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9. Tim Elliott (20-13-1)

ufc flyweight rankings
Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Despite being 36 and not quite the athlete he once was, Tim Elliott is still a relevant and dangerous fighter in the flyweight top-10. He has won three of his last four and scored an impressive victory in December over Sumudaerji. He likely won’t fight again for a title, however, he is an elite-level litmus test for any serious rising contender.

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8. Muhammad Mokaev (11-0)

ufc flyweight rankings
Credit: USA Today Network

Muhammad Mokaev’s run in the UFC has been short, but it has been very impressive. He has won five straight to keep his record unbeaten after 11 pro fights and four of his victories in the Octagon have been submissions. At UFC 294 he scored another prove-it win when he made fellow top-10 veteran Tim Elliott tap out. Again proving the Russian is a dangerous submission ace.

7. Kai Kara-France (24-11)

ufc flyweight rankings
Credit: USA Today Network

After years of toiling away inside the division, New Zealand’s Kai Kara-France finally got a chance at UFC gold last year. Unfortunately, he had the bad luck of facing the best flyweight of this generation, Brandon Moreno.

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In June, he got his first UFC main event slot against one of the hottest fighters in the division, Amir Albazi. Unfortunately, despite some who thought he won, he came up short in the five-round matchup and suffered a second straight defeat.

6. Manel Kape (19-6)

ufc flyweight rankings
Credit: Jasmin Frank-USA TODAY Sports

After a rough start to his UFC career, where he lost consecutive fights to elite talent, Manel Kape has gone on a tear over his last three. Scoring highlight reel finishes in two of those bouts and he has quickly climbed up our UFC flyweight rankings. He has had difficulty in securing a fight in 2023 after two high-profile opponents dropped out of scheduled matchups this spring.

While he did not get the ranked foe he originally planned for at UFC 293 he still extended his win streak to four by scoring a win over UFC newcomer Felipe dos Santos.

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5. Matheus Nicolau (19-4-1)

ufc flyweight rankings
Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Brazil’s Matheus Nicolau seemed en route to a UFC flyweight title shot after winning his first four inside the Octagon. Unfortunately for him, that was all derailed in April by a first-round TKO loss to Brandon Royval. With the top of the division so stacked, Nicolau may need to win a couple of fights to regain the contender status he recently lost.

4. Brandon Royval (15-7)

ufc flyweight rankings
Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

After a pair of frustrating losses to the current and form champions, Brandon Royval went on a tear. “Raw Dawg” won three straight, with the last two being definitive finishes over other fighters in the UFC flyweight rankings. After some big bumps in the road, Royval was on the cusp of a long-sought-after title opportunity and got it at UFC 296.

Unfortunately, in his rematch with Pantoja he once again was unable to overcome the Brazilian star. Now, Royval will have to go to the back of the contender line and rebuild his contender campaign in 2024.

3. Amir Albazi (17-1)

ufc flyweight rankings
Credit: Jeffrey Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

Amir Albazi is one of the hottest fighters in the 125-pound division. He has won four straight since joining the UFC, with three of them being finishes. Including his most recent win, an outstanding knockout victory over Alessandro Costa.

He has long hyped himself as one of the best in the world, and he got his chance to prove it against a former interim title challenger in June. Although some question the win, he still got his hand raised against Kai Kara-France in June and scored by far the biggest victory of his career.

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2. Brandon Moreno (21-6-2)

Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Few flyweights have been better than Brandon Moreno over the last few years. He has defeated all comers, and his lone loss was a razor-thin defeat to division beast Deiveson Figueiredo. He has conquered all his career failings and greatest rivals, except one.

On July 8, he had a chance at revenge on the only man to hang two Ls on him, Alexandre Pantoja. Unfortunately, he fell short to the Brazilian once again in a fantastic five-round war. Now he is in a difficult position where he will again need to climb the division ladder to get a chance at his long-time rival and get his belt back.

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1. Alexandre Pantoja (27-5)

ufc flyweight rankings
Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Brazil’s Alexandre Pantoja has had a long hard road to becoming the new UFC flyweight king. He has toiled away inside the division for five years before he was finally able to earn a title fight at UFC 290. In his first chance at being champion, he made good by scoring a second (third unofficial) win over division king Brandon Moreno.

In his first defense of his thrown, he took part in another rematch — this time against Brandon Royval — and again proved he was the better man and still the best 125 pound fighter on the planet.

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