Josh Gross
Friday August 6th, 2010

If July felt like a slow fight month, that's because it was. Especially when compared to what's in store through the remainder of 2010. In August alone, 19 of the mixed martial artists ranked among the Top 10 of their weight class will step into a cage -- highlighted by three fights pitting the top two fighters in their respective divisions. Two already have, as Jon Jones and Yushin Okami earned victories Sunday in San Diego.

Action was sparse the second half of July, though there was enough relevant action -- and inaction -- to provoke several notable changes in the latest rankings.

Anderson Silva, who defends his UFC middleweight title this weekend, fell out of the light heavyweight Top 10 after a year away from the division, allowing Gegard Mousasi to pop back on the list. Similarly, second-ranked flyweight Shinichi "BJ" Kojima lost his spot, allowing Fumihiro Kitahara a chance to be ranked for the first time.

Results also dictated shifts, none more important than at lightweight after Dream champion Shinya Aoki regrouped from April's disappointment against Gilbert Melendez to wrench Tatsuya Kawajiri's ankle for a submission finish. The result returned Aoki to the top five, and swept Kawajiri, a mainstay in the lightweight rankings since 2004, down to No. 9.

There's much to look forward to that has nothing to do with highly-ranked fighters. But if you're into this sort of stuff, it doesn't get much better than Agust.

Listed here are the Top 10 ranked mixed martial artists scheduled to compete this month:

Heavyweight • Junior dos Santos (No. 6) vs. Roy Nelson (No. 15) -- Aug. 7, UFC, Oakland, Calif.

Light Heavyweight • Muhammed Lawal (No. 9) vs. Rafael "Feijao" Cavalcante (unranked) -- Aug. 21, Strikeforce, Houston, Texas

Middleweight • Anderson Silva (No. 1) vs. Chael Sonnen (No. 2) -- Aug. 7, UFC, Oakland, Calif. • Jorge Santiago (No. 10) vs. Kazuo Misaki (unranked) -- Aug. 22, Sengoku, Tokyo, Japan

Welterweight • Jon Fitch (No. 2) vs. Thiago Alves (No. 3) -- Aug. 7, UFC, Oakland, Calif. • Matt Hughes (No. 8) vs. Ricardo Almeida (unranked) -- Aug. 7, UFC, Oakland, Calif.

Lightweight • Frankie Edgar (No. 1) vs. B.J. Penn (No. 2) -- Aug. 28, UFC, Boston, Mass. • Kenny Florian (No. 4) vs. Gray Maynard (No. 7) -- Aug. 28, UFC, Boston, Mass.

Featherweight • No bouts scheduled

Bantamweight • Dominick Cruz (No. 1) vs. Joseph Benavidez (No. 2) -- Aug. 18, WEC, Las Vegas • Scott Jorgensen (No. 5) vs. Brad Pickett (unranked) -- Aug. 18, WEC, Las Vegas • Takeya Mizugaki (No. 6) vs. TBD -- Aug. 18, WEC, Las Vegas

Flyweight • Mamoru Yamaguchi (No. 2) vs. Greg Guzman (unranked) -- Aug. 5, KOTC, San Manuel Indian Nation, Calif.

Here's a look at SI.com's updated MMA rankings for July:

Heavyweight 1. Brock Lesnar (5-1) 2. Fabricio Werdum (14-4-1) 3. Fedor Emelianenko (31-2, 1 NC) 4. Cain Velasquez (8-0) 5. Shane Carwin (12-1) 6. Junior dos Santos (11-1) 7. Frank Mir (13-5) 8. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (32-6-1, 1 NC) 9. Alistair Overeem (32-11, 1 NC) 10. Antonio Silva (14-2)

Others receiving consideration: Cheick Kongo, Brett Rogers, Andrei Arlovski, Josh Barnett, Roy Nelson

Light Heavyweight 1. Mauricio Rua (19-4) 2. Lyoto Machida (16-1) 3. Rashad Evans (15-1-1) 4. Quinton Jackson (30-8) 5. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (19-3) 6. Forrest Griffin (17-6) 7. Thiago Silva (14-2) 8. Jon Jones (11-1) 9. Muhammed Lawal (7-0) 10. Gegard Mousasi (29-3-1)

Others receiving consideration: Rich Franklin, Randy Couture, Ryan Bader, Renato Sobral, Matt Hamill

Middleweight 1. Anderson Silva (26-4) 2. Chael Sonnen (24-10-1) 3. Jake Shields (25-4-1) 4. Nate Marquardt (29-9-2) 5. Dan Henderson (25-8) 6. Vitor Belfort (19-8) 7. Yushin Okami (25-5) 8. Demian Maia (12-2) 9. Robbie Lawler (17-6, 1 NC) 10. Jorge Santiago (22-8)

Others receiving consideration: Ronaldo Souza, Wanderlei Silva, Hector Lombard, Chris Leben, Michael Bisping

Welterweight 1. Georges St. Pierre (20-2) 2. Jon Fitch (22-3, 1 NC) 3. Thiago Alves (16-6) 4. Martin Kampmann (17-3) 5. Paulo Thiago (13-2) 6. Josh Koscheck (15-4) 7. Nick Diaz (23-7, 1 ND) 8. Matt Hughes (44-7) 9. Dan Hardy (23-7, 1 NC) 10. Paul Daley (24-9-2)

Others receiving consideration: Carlos Condit, Jay Hieron, Matt Serra, Ben Askren, John Hathaway

Lightweight 1. Frankie Edgar (12-1) 2. B.J. Penn (15-6-1) 3. Gilbert Melendez (18-2) 4. Kenny Florian (13-4) 5. Shinya Aoki (24-5, 1 NC) 6. Eddie Alvarez (20-2) 7. Gray Maynard (9-0, 1 NC) 8. Evan Dunham (11-0) 9. Tatsuya Kawajiri (26-6-2) 10. John Thomson (17-3)

Others receiving consideration: Jim Miller, Takanori Gomi, Ben Henderson, George Sotiropoulous, Antonio McKee

Featherweight 1. Jose Aldo (17-1) 2. Bibiano Fernandes (8-2) 3. Manny Gamburyan (11-4) 4. Mike Thomas Brown (23-6) 5. Urijah Faber (23-4) 6. Hatsu Hioki (21-4-2) 7. Marlon Sandro (17-1) 8. Michihiro Omigawa (11-8-1) 9. Josh Grispi (14-1) 10. Joe Warren (5-1)

Others receiving consideration: L.C. Davis, Diego Nunes, Raphael Assuncao, Joe Soto, Masanori Kanehara

Bantamweight 1. Dominick Cruz (15-1) 2. Joseph Benavidez (12-1) 3. Brian Bowles (8-1) 4. Miguel Torres (37-3) 5. Scott Jorgensen (10-3) 6. Takeya Mizugaki (13-4-2) 7. Damacio Page (15-4) 8. Rani Yahya (15-6) 9. Shuichiro Katsumura (11-7-3) 10. Masakatsu Ueda (11-1-2)

Others receiving consideration: Eddie Wineland, Charlie Valencia, Wagnney Fabiano, Antonio Banuelos, Michael McDonald

Flyweight 1. Jussier da Silva (7-0) 2. Mamoru Yamaguchi (23-5-3) 3. Yuki Shojo (10-5-2) 4. Yasuhiro Urushitani (17-4-6) 5. Ryuichi Miki (10-4-3) 6. Kiyotaka Shimizu (6-3-1) 7. Pat Runez (4-0) 8. Mitsuhisa Sunabe (12-6-3) 9. Alexis Vila (8-0) 10. Fumihiro Kitahara (8-1-1)

Others receiving consideration: John Dodson, Alexandre Pantajo, Isao Hirose, Jessie Riggleman, Ulysses Gomez

Pound-for-pound 1. Georges St. Pierre (Canada) 2. Anderson Silva (Brazil) 3. Jose Aldo (Brazil) 4. Mauricio Rua (Brazil) 5. Dominick Cruz (U.S.) 6. Jake Shields (U.S.) 7. Frankie Edgar (U.S.) 8. B.J. Penn (U.S.) 9. Lyoto Machida (Brazil) 10. Gilbert Melendez (U.S.)

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide - from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Seth Davis, and more - delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.