In terms of sheer numbers, the lightweight class is certainly UFC’s deepest after the merger with WEC.
The UFC Web site lists 46 lightweights (for comparison: 53 welterweights, 41 middleweights, 35 light heavies and 29 heavyweights). That’s an inexact measure — the site doesn’t always keep up with every roster change — but it gives us a ballpark idea of who’s in the Zuffa umbrella.
The WEC site lists 21 lightweights. (Aside on lower weights: They have 22 featherweights and only 18 bantamweights. Will the UFC bucks and brand name lure more fighters from overseas? The rankings suggest they have plenty of room to grow at featherweight, with only five of the top 11 currently with WEC, but the bantamweight pool isn’t as deep.)
So if no one is dropped, the UFC will have 67 lightweights. Make it 68, with Marcus Davis dropping down from 170.
With the help of Sherdog’s trusty Fight Finder, I’ve tried to compile everyone’s resumes. Please do speak up if I’ve made a mistake in transcribing or otherwise made a mess of things. I’ve only taken fighters listed on the UFC and WEC sites, though there may be a couple of fighters who are in contract limbo and could bounce back in at any moment.
Frankie Edgar: 13-1 overall, 8-1 UFC. Wins over Penn (2), Sherk, Griffin. Loss to Maynard, his next opponent.
2. BJ Penn: 15-7-1, 11-6-1 UFC. Had won five straight (incl. Stevenson, Sherk, Florian, Sanchez) at LW before losing twice to Edgar. Last four losses before Edgar had been at 170 or higher. Next fight at 170 vs. Matt Hughes.
4. Gray Maynard: 10-0 (1 NC), 8-0 UFC. Wins over Florian, Diaz, J. Miller, Edgar, Siver. Next fight vs. Edgar for title.
7. Kenny Florian: 13-5, 11-4 UFC. Wins over Gomi, Guida, Stevenson, Lauzon, Stout. Losses to Maynard, Penn, Sherk, Sanchez (MW).
9. Sean Sherk: 36-4-1, 8-4 UFC. Won on scorecards but not in minds of many vs. Dunham in first bout in 16 months. Wins over Griffin, Florian, Nick Diaz. Losses to Edgar, Penn, two at 170.
10. George Sotiropoulos: 13-2, 6-0 UFC. Wins over Pellegrino, Stevenson, Roop.
11. Evan Dunham: 11-1, 4-1 UFC. Fast riser lost undefeated mark in controversial decision vs. Sherk. Beat Griffin and since-released TUF winner Efrain Escudero.
12. Jim Miller: 18-2, 7-1 UFC. Wins over Tibau, Bocek, Ludwig, Danzig, Wiman. Losses to Maynard, Edgar.
13. Takanori Gomi: 32-6 (1 NC), 1-1 UFC, 13-1 Pride. Wins over Griffin, Ludwig. Losses to Florian, Penn.
14. Ben Henderson (WEC): 12-1, 5-0 WEC. Wins over Cerrone (2), Varner, Roller. One last defense of WEC belt vs. Pettis; winner faces Edgar-Maynard winner.
17. Joe Stevenson: 31-11, 8-5 UFC. Wins over Fisher, Diaz, Tibau, Pellegrino, Guillard, Edwards. Losses to Sotiropoulos, Sanchez, Florian, Penn.
18. Tyson Griffin: 14-4, 7-4 UFC. Two-bout losing skid (Gomi, Dunham). Wins over Dos Anjos, Tibau, Tavares, Guida. Other losses to Sherk, Edgar.
20. Kurt Pellegrino: 16-5, 7-4 UFC. Wins over Tavares, Danzig. Losses to Sotiropoulos, Diaz, Stevenson.
21. Diego Sanchez: 22-4, 11-4 UFC. Most of career at WW and might not need to be listed here. Just 2-1 at 155, with wins over Guida and Stevenson, loss to Penn. Beat Florian at MW in TUF finale.
22. Clay Guida: 27-11, 7-5 UFC. Wins over Dos Anjos, Diaz, Danzig, Palaszewski. Losses to Florian, Sanchez, Griffin.
23. Melvin Guillard: 26-8-2, 8-4 UFC. Wins over Stephens, Lowe, Tibau, Siver, Ruediger, Davis. Losses to Diaz, Stevenson.
24. Sam Stout: 16-6-1, 8-5 UFC. Wins over Taylor, Lauzon, Wiman. Losses to Stephens, Etim, Fisher, Florian.
Anthony Pettis (WEC): 12-1, 4-1 WEC. Win over Roller. Loss to Palaszewski. Faces Henderson for belt (see above).
Nate Diaz: 13-5, 8-3 UFC. Wins over Davis, Guillard, Pellegrino. Losses to Maynard (controversial), Stevenson, Guida.
Chris Horodecki (WEC): 16-2, 2-1 WEC. Wins over Ratcliff, Downes, Palaszewski (2). Loss to Njokuani.
Cole Miller: 17-4, 6-2 UFC. Win over Pearson. Loss to Stephens.
Anthony Njokuani (WEC): 12-4, 3-3 WEC. Wins over Horodecki, Palaszewski. Losses to Jewtuszko, Roller, Henderson, Cerrone.
Charles Oliveira: 14-0, 2-0 UFC.
Ross Pearson: 11-4, 3-1 UFC. Wins over Siver, Riley, Winner. Losses to C. Miller, Warburton.
Kamal Shalorus (WEC): 6-0-2, 2-0-1 WEC. Win over Kerr. Draw with Varner.
Tiequan Zhang (WEC): 12-0, 1-0 WEC. Chinese prospect. WEC claims he’s 17-0.
Donald Cerrone (WEC): 12-3 (1 NC), 5-3 WEC. Win over Ratcliff. Split with Varner. Losses (2) to Henderson.
Mac Danzig: 19-8-1, 3-4 UFC. Win over Bocek. Losses to Wiman, J. Miller, Guida, Pellegrino.
Marcus Davis: 17-7, 9-5 UFC, all at 170. Wins over Kelly, Taylor. Loss to Diaz.
Yves Edwards: 39-16-1, 7-4 UFC. Wins over Gunderson, Riley. Losses to Ludwig, Stevenson.
Spencer Fisher: 24-6, 9-5 UFC. Wins over Warburton, Stephens, Stout, Wiman, Riley. Losses to Siver, Stevenson, Edgar, Stout.
Joe Lauzon: 19-5, 6-2 UFC. Wins over Ruediger, Stephens. Losses to Stout, Florian.
Nik Lentz: 19-3-2, 3-0-1 UFC. Win over Winner. Draw with Tavares.
Duane Ludwig: 19-11, 2-2 UFC. Win over Edwards. Losses to J. Miller, Gomi, Griffin, Penn.
Bart Palaszewski (WEC): 35-13, 5-1 WEC. Wins over Gunderson, Micklewright, Pettis. Losses to Njokuani, Lamas, J. Miller, Horodecki (2).
Gabe Ruediger: 17-6, 0-2 UFC. Losses to Lauzon, Guillard.
Jeremy Stephens: 18-6, 5-5 UFC. Wins over Stout, Dos Anjos, C. Miller. Losses to Guillard, Tibau, Lauzon, Fisher.
Thiago Tavares: 15-3-1, 5-3-1 UFC. Win over Audinwood. Draw with Lentz. Losses to Pellegrino, Wiman, Griffin.
Gleison Tibau: 21-7, 7-5 UFC. Wins over Stephens, Etim. Losses to J. Miller, Guillard, Stevenson, Griffin.
Jamie Varner (WEC): 16-4-1, 1-1 UFC, 4-2-1 WEC. Split with Cerrone. Draw with Shalorus. Loss to Henderson.
Matt Wiman: 12-5, 6-3 UFC. Wins over Danzig, Tavares. Losses to Stout, J. Miller, Fisher.
Mark Bocek: 8-3, 4-3 UFC. Losses to J. Miller, Danzig, Edgar.
Danny Castillo (WEC): 9-3, 4-3 WEC. Wins over Poirier, Lamas. Losses to Pettis, Roller, Cerrone.
Rafael Dos Anjos: 14-5, 3-3 UFC. Win over Etim. Losses to Guida, Griffin, Stephens.
Terry Etim: 14-3, 5-3 UFC. Win over Stout. Losses to Dos Anjos, Tibau.
John Gunderson: 30-11-2, 1-2 UFC. Win over Holst. Losses to Edwards, Palaszewski.
Paul Kelly: 10-3, 4-3 UFC. Win over Taylor. Losses to Siver, Davis.
Ricardo Lamas (WEC): 9-1, 4-1 WEC. Win over Palaszewski. Loss to Castillo.
Waylon Lowe: 9-3, 1-1 UFC. Loss to Guillard.
Ed Ratcliff (WEC): 7-3, 3-3 WEC. Losses to Horodecki, Cerrone.
Aaron Riley: 30-12-1, 3-4 UFC. Losses to Pearson, Fisher, Edwards.
Shane Roller (WEC): 8-3, 5-2 WEC. Wins over Njokuani, Castillo. Losses to Pettis, Henderson.
George Roop (WEC): 11-6-1, 1-2 UFC, 1-1-1 WEC. Floating to lower weight classes, which seems dangerous when you’re 6-1. Losses to Sotiropoulos, Nelson.
Dennis Siver: 16-7, 5-4 UFC. Wins over Fisher, Kelly. Losses to Pearson, Guillard, Maynard.
Paul Taylor: 10-6-1, 3-5 UFC. Losses to Stout, Kelly, Davis.
Andre Winner: 11-4-1, 2-2 UFC. Losses to Lentz, Pearson.
Pat Audinwood: 9-1-1, 0-1 UFC. Loss to Tavares.
Edson Barboza: 6-0, 0-0 UFC.
Dan Downes (WEC): 6-1, 0-1 WEC.
Edward Faaloloto (WEC): 2-0, 0-0 WEC.
Willamy Friere: 17-3-1, 0-0 UFC.
Mark Holst: 8-3, 0-2 UFC. Losses to Sass, Gunderson.
Maciej Jewtuszko (WEC): 8-0, 1-0 WEC. Win over Njokuani.
Will Kerr (WEC): 9-2, 1-1 WEC. Loss to Shalorus.
Zack Micklewright (WEC): 7-1, 1-1 WEC. Loss to Palaszewski.
Dustin Poirier (WEC): 7-1, 0-1 WEC. Loss to Castillo.
Jason Reinhardt (WEC): 20-1, 0-1 UFC. Loss to Lauzon. Missed out on WEC debut due to eye exam – strange and sad story.
Paul Sass: 11-0, 0-0 UFC.
Kurt Warburton: 6-2, 0-1 UFC. Win over Pearson. Loss to Fisher.