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Jones, Gane, Shevchenko, Grasso, Rakhmonov, Neal, Araujo, Ribas, Gamrot, Turner, Brunson, Du Plessis
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Rankings Repercussions | UFC 285: Jones vs Gane

With A Card As Stacked As UFC 285, Some Rankings Movement Is Inevitable. Let's See What's At Stake.

With two title fights sitting atop any card, that's already an indication a rankings shakeup is imminent. But with a stacked card like UFC 285, there's a lot of potential for seismic activity when the final bell sounds at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas Saturday night. Let's break down the biggest potential movers.

(No. 8) Viviane Araújo vs (UR FW, No. 9 SW) Amanda Ribas

Viviane Araujo

Upside With Win: Minimal. Araújo wouldn’t gain much rankings-wise, but she would begin rebuilding the momentum she had going before dropping her most recent bout to UFC 285 co-main challenger Alexa Grasso.

How To Watch UFC 285 In Your Country

Downside With Loss: Big. A loss to an unranked flyweight runs the risk of not only dropping her deep into the Top 15, but undoing all the work the Brazilian has put in to becoming one of the division’s flagship fighters.

Viviane Araujo meets Amanda Ribas On the prelims of UFC 285 on March 4 in Las Vegas

Amanda Ribas

Upside With Win: Huge. Ribas sits just outside the top 15 flyweights as of this writing, and a solid win could have her sitting in the top ten of two different divisions at the same time.

Downside With Loss: Moderate. Another loss at 125 pounds would greatly extend her time outside of the flyweight rankings and have her thinking harder about her current No. 9 ranking at strawweight.

No. 5 Derek Brunson vs No. 10 Dricus Du Plessis

Derek Brunson

Upside With Win: Modest. A move up the rankings isn’t likely, but it would keep Brunson in the title shot or title eliminator conversation at middleweight.

Downside With Loss: Huge. The 39-year-old Brunson has openly flirted with retirement in his last few fight cycles, but can’t shake the idea that he’s close to that elusive title shot. A loss here could not only drop him to the lower end of the top ten, but accelerate his consideration to call it a day.

Highlight: Dricus Du Plessis Knocks Out Giles | UFC 264
Highlight: Dricus Du Plessis Knocks Out Giles | UFC 264

Dricus Du Plessis

Upside With Win: Huge. The South African has been on a stellar undefeated run in the UFC and a win here could land him in the top five, where he’d be rubbing elbows with the likes of Robert Whittaker, Marvin Vettori and Israel Adesanya.

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Downside With Loss: Modest. He’d likely slip a spot or two, but his recent run indicates he has tremendous upside at 185 pounds.

No. 7 Mateusz Gamrot vs No. 10 Jalin Turner

Mateusz Gamrot

Upside With Win: Minimal. A short-notice replacement in this fight, Gamrot wouldn’t move up with a win here, but with only two career losses, he’d maintain his strong position in arguably the toughest division in the sport.

Downside With Loss: Modest. He’d take a fall, but it should be a short one. He owns a win already over the man just below him (Arman Tsarukyan) and would probably still draw other top ten opponents.

Highlight: Jalin Turner Earns Second Straight Submission Win | UFC 266
Highlight: Jalin Turner Earns Second Straight Submission Win | UFC 266

Jalin Turner

Upside With Win: Big. It would mark his sixth straight win in an unforgiving division. His new position in the rankings would have the few men ranked above him plotting what to do about “The Tarantuala”’s imposing 6’3” frame.

Inside The Heavyweight Transformation Of Jon Jones

Downside With Loss: Modest. He’d lose his foothold in the top ten with an army of assassins coming for that spot. But his size will always be a factor for as long as he remains in the lightweight division.

No. 7 Geoff Neal vs No. 10 Shavkat Rakhmonov

Geoff Neal

Upside With Win: Minimal. Not much room to move up here, but the last man to defeat Belal Muhammad might have the juice to entertain a rematch with the man, who is ranked just a few spots above him.

Downside With Loss: Modest. He might switch places with his opponent, but with recent wins over powerhouses like Vincente Luque and Santiago Ponzinibbio, it’s obvious Neal has the tools to rebuild.

Rise Of Shavkat Rakhmonov
Rise Of Shavkat Rakhmonov

Shavkat Rakhmonov

Upside With Win: Big. The Kazak welterweight remains a puzzle that no fighter has solved, and his continued climb up the top ten portends massive things for the future.

Downside With Loss: Modest. The undefeated Rakhmonov might slip outside the top ten, but based on recent history, it’s hard to imagine he’d be gone for long.

Champion Valentina Shevchenko vs No. 6 Alexa Grasso

Valentina Shevchenko

Upside With Win: Huge. Her seven consecutive title defenses are the already the most among current UFC fighters, and a win here would extend that history-making run.

UFC 285 Fight By Fight Breakdown

Downside With Loss: Modest. Shevchenko would hate to end her nine-fight winning streak (and her undefeated streak at 125 pounds), but she has already cleaned out a significant chunk of the division and would remain a favorite to be the next champion, even after a loss.

Alexa Grasso

Upside With Win: Huge. Grasso would become just the third women’s flyweight champion and the first female champion from Mexico. Currently at No. 6, she’d also leapfrog a dangerous pool of 125-pound hopefuls like Manon Fiorot, Erin Blanchfield and Taila Santos.

Downside With Loss: Modest. The six fighters ranked below Grasso all have fights booked in the near future, so some movement here is inevitable. Still, she owns wins over two of those women (Viviane Araújo and Maycee Barber), so any drop is unlikely to be catastrophic.                                                                       

(UR) Jon Jones vs No. 1 Ciryl Gane

Jon Jones

Upside With Win: Huge. If “Bones” can translate his dominance into the heavyweight division and become the next UFC athlete to boast championships in two separate weight classes, he would all but end arguments as to who MMA’s G.O.A.T. is.

Downside With Loss: Modest. Although losing isn’t something Jones is used to (the lone L on his record was a DQ in a fight he dominated), a strong performance, coupled with his extensive résumé in the 205-pound ranks, should keep him in the upper reaches of the division.

Ciryl Gane

Upside With Win: Huge. Just a dozen fights into his MMA career, he would be the new “baddest man on the planet.” And less than a year removed from the UFC’s first event in France, “Bon Gamin” would have the distinction of being the country’s first champion.

Reasons To Watch UFC 285: Jones vs Gane

Downside With Loss: Moderate. Although he likely wouldn’t fall farther than No. 5 Tai Tuivasa—the last man Gane defeated—he’d find himself with hungry sharks like Sergei Pavlovich, Curtis Blaydes and Stipe Miocic, all of whom are gunning for the next shot at the strap.

UFC 285: Jones vs Gane

UFC 285: Jones vs Gane took place live from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on March 4, 2023. See the Final Results, Official Scorecards and Who Won Bonuses - and relive the action on UFC Fight Pass