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USA TODAY Sports/MMA Junkie rankings, Aug. 3: A.J. McKee new No. 1 featherweight USA TODAY Sports/MMA Junkie rankings, Aug. 3: A.J. McKee new No. 1 featherweight

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USA TODAY Sports/MMA Junkie rankings, Aug. 3: A.J. McKee new No. 1 featherweight

Pound For Pound Rankings Already considered one of the greatest fighters of all-time, Jones says he wants to turn his attention to heavyweight and has no intention of returning to 205 pounds. While he failed in his bid to become a champ-champ, Adesanya looked quite dominant in his most recent middleweight title defense and said…

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Pound For Pound Rankings

Already considered one of the greatest fighters of all-time, Jones says he wants to turn his attention to heavyweight and has no intention of returning to 205 pounds.

While he failed in his bid to become a champ-champ, Adesanya looked quite dominant in his most recent middleweight title defense and said he wants to return in October.

After suffering the first knockout loss of his career, Johnson openly contemplated the idea of potentially competing in kickboxing next, which he could also do under the ONE Championship banner.

Ngannou claimed the UFC heavyweight title with a brilliant win over Stipe Miocic but is now openly expressing his frustration with the promotion after an interim title fight was announced.

Miocic apologized for deviating from the gameplan against the dangerous Francis Ngannou, a mistake that cost him the UFC heavyweight title.

The undefeated Bellator champion looked absolutely incredible in his run through the promotion’s featherweight grand prix and is willing to take on anyone in defense of his new title.

Moreno claimed gold with a scintillating victory over Deiveson Figueiredo and now seems destined for stardom in his native Mexico.

Figueiredo handed over his UFC title with a submission loss to new champ Brandon Moreno and now must battle his way back to a trilogy fight.

It was a long way to the top for ‘Do Bronx,’ but Oliveira is truly firing on all cylinders now and will look to put together a run as UFC lightweight champion.

Poirier continues to be one of the most exciting fighters in the game, and his grit is immeasurable – qualities he hopes will net him the UFC lightweight title.

Holloway delivered a record-breaking destruction of Calvin Kattar and now looks like he’ll get a chance to regain the UFC featherweight title later this year.

Whittaker is on quite the run since losing the UFC middleweight title and seems to have earned a rematch with Israel Adesanya.

Honorable Mentions

USA TODAY Sports/MMA Junkie rankings, Aug. 3: A.J. McKee new No. 1 featherweight

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Let the debate begin.

A.J. McKee continued his undefeated record in emphatic fashion this past Saturday at Bellator 263, where he finished dual champion Patricio Freire in just 1:57 to become the new featherweight title holder, grand prix winner and earned $1 million for his efforts.

The victory left no doubt about McKee (18-0 MMA, 18-0 BMMA) being the best 145 pounder in Bellator, where he’s spent his entire career so far, but what about overall? McKee entered Bellator 263 as the No. 5 featherweight in the USA TODAY Sports/MMA Junkie rankings. Coming out of Bellator 263? McKee is the new No. 1 based after his impressive performance, leapfrogging Brian Ortega, Freire, Max Holloway, and UFC champion Alexander Volkanovski for the top spot.

Volkanovski and Ortega will have an upcoming opportunity to move into the top spot when they face each other Sept. 4 at UFC 266. But until then, McKee reigns supreme based on his undefeated resume, which now includes a relatively quick finish of the fighter widely considered the Bellator GOAT.

McKee also entered the pound-for-pound list for the first time, moving into the No. 8 spot just ahead of Volkanovski.

You can check out our complete rankings by weight class and pound-for-pound in the dropdown above.

A.J. McKee, video, Bellator, MMA Rankings, News, UFC

Ranking Criteria

The rankings take into account a fighter’s wins/losses, quality of competition, finishing rate/dominance and frequency of fights.

Fighters are no longer eligible to be ranked after they’ve been inactive for 24 months, either due to injuries, drug/conduct suspensions, contract disputes or self-imposed hiatuses.

Fighters serving drug/conduct suspensions are eligible to be ranked, so long as they’re not inactive for more than 24 months.

To the best of our ability, fighters will be ranked in their primary weight class. Catchweight fights and bouts outside the fighter’s primary weight class can have a positive or negative impact on the ranking. However, non-titleholders can be ranked in only one weight class at a given time, and in most cases, they won’t be ranked in a new weight class until they’ve had their first fight at that weight.

Journalist and science writer for NewsAfrica24, the Atlantic, New Scientist, Aeon, Men’s Health, and many others. Author of The Intelligence Mafias, published by Stoughton (UK)/WW Norton (USA) and translated into six languages.

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Black Stars Head Coach CK Akonnor sacked

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The Executive Council of the Ghana Football Association has taken a decision to terminate the appointment of Black Stars Coach Charles Akonnor and his two Assistants with immediate effect.

This follows the receipt of the Technical Report from the Head Coach of the Senior National Team and the report from the Black Stars Management Committee following Ghana’s Group G World Cup qualifying matches against Ethiopia and South Africa.

The Executive Council after considering the two reports have decided to terminate its relationship with the Head Coach C. K Akonnor and the two Assistants.

The Executive Council has formed a three (3) Member Committee made up of Vice President Mark Addo, Upper East Regional Football Association Chairman, Alhaji Salifu Zida and Dr. Randy Abbey to find a Head Coach and Assistant Coaches for the Black Stars within the next 72 hours.

The Association wishes C.K Akonnor and his Assistants the very best in their future endeavours.

Ghana currently have three (3) points after the two opening matches.

The Black Stars will take on Zimbabwe in the next round of games in October 2021.

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Andy Murray: Emma Raducanu win provides ‘huge opportunity’ for British tennis

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Kent teenager Emma Raducanu took New York by storm, not dropping a set en route to victory as she became the first qualifier in history to claim a grand slam crown; fellow Briton Andy Murray was asked about the 18-year-old after his Rennes Open first-round victory over Yannick Maden

Andy Murray has hailed Emma Raducanu’s “incredible” US Open win and spoken of a “huge opportunity” for British tennis.

Kent teenager Raducanu took New York by storm, not dropping a set en route to victory as she became the first qualifier in history to claim a grand slam crown.

Fellow Briton Murray was asked about the 18-year-old at a press conference on Monday after his Rennes Open first-round victory over Yannick Maden.

The three-time grand slam winner said: “It was incredible what she did there. I think for a lot of the people involved in British tennis, we knew she was extremely good.

“She hadn’t competed much for the last sort of 18 months or so with school and coronavirus and those sorts of things, but I think at Wimbledon (where Raducanu reached the fourth round) everyone sort of got a bit of a glimpse of how good she could be.

“I’ve spent a little bit of time around her on the practice court, but more so in the same building, training close to each other, and watching what she’s doing, and she’s obviously really, really good.

“But what she did in New York was very special, a huge boost for British tennis and gives hopefully the governing bodies an opportunity to capitalise on that and get more and more kids involved in the sport.

“It’s great what she did and a huge opportunity for British tennis now.”

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Antoine Griezmann: Atletico Madrid re-sign French forward on loan from Barcelona

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Antoine Griezmann joined Barcelona from Atletico Madrid in £103m deal two years ago; forward returns to Atletico on a season-long loan; Sky Italy and Barcelona say Atletico have obligation to make deal permanent next summer, but Atletico say they instead have the option to extend the loan

Antoine Griezmann has completed his shock Deadline Day return to Atletico Madrid on loan from Barcelona.

Atletico and Barcelona said there was an option to extend the loan for a further season, with the Catalan club adding the Madrid side also had an obligation to make the deal permanent. Sky in Italy reports this permanent deal would cost £34.4m (€40m).

Atletico were able to move for the 30-year-old after sanctioning Saul Niguez’s departure to Chelsea on an initial loan with an option to buy worth £33.4m (€38.9m) overall.

Diego Simeone was keen to sign a new striker and Griezmann will have no difficulty settling back at Atletico, having worked under the Argentine between 2014 and 2019.

Barcelona stated that Atletico have agreed to pay Griezmann’s wages in full.

AP AIMGE
Image:Saul Niguez joined Chelsea from Atletico Madrid on Deadline Day

The 2018 World Cup-winner joined Barcelona from Atletico on a £103m deal two years ago and scored 35 goals in 102 appearances for the club.

However, he has only won the Copa del Rey during his time at the Nou Camp, and the Catalan giants have been trying to lighten their wage bill this summer due to debts amounting to £1.15billion, as confirmed by club president Joan Laporta earlier in August.

The club’s reported financial struggles meant they were unable to offer Lionel Messi a new contract, prompting his shock exit to Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer.

On Tuesday, the club announced stalwarts Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba have accepted to take a pay cut in order to aid the club’s Financial Fair Play parameters and ensure new signing Sergio Aguero could be formally registered with the Spanish Football League (LFP).

Earlier in the summer, Gerard Pique took a similar decision to allow Memphis Depay and Eric Garcia to be ratified as Barcelona players.

Griezmann originally left Atletico for Barcelona in 2019 at the end of a protracted transfer saga after his £103m (€120m) release clause was paid in full.

A year earlier, he featured in a documentary with Spanish TV station Movistar called “The Decision” which followed him as he opted to stay at Atletico despite interest from Barcelona.

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