UFC welterweight Santiago Ponzinibbio trashed what he called the “bullsh*t” UFC rankings after losing his top-15 spot in the 170lbs ranks.
Ponzinibbio has a 9-2 record in the UFC and is currently riding a seven-fight win streak. However, he’s had terrible luck with injuries, along with major health issues, and he’s been out of action for more than two years. Ponzinibbio hasn’t fought since November 2018 when he knocked out Neil Magny in his native Argentina. Due to inactivity, he was removed from the UFC rankings in December 2019. He finally returns to the Octagon on January 16 in Abu Dhabi.
Considering all of the time missed, it’s understandable why the UFC removed Ponzinibbio from the rankings. What he has an issue with is why someone like Brian Ortega remained in the rankings but he didn’t. In the case of Ortega, he actually fought in December 2018 and didn’t return to the Octagon until October 2020, but he remained in the rankings the entire time. Ponzinibbio isn’t sure why he was removed when Ortega got to stay ranked in the top-five.
Speaking to Jason Burgos of Sherdog, Ponzinibbio blasted the “bullsh*t” UFC rankings and questioned why he was removed from the welterweight top-15. The Argentinian was not happy the UFC booked him against an unranked opponent in Li Jingliang, saying the guy he wanted a top-15 opponent.
From my upcoming conversation with #UFC welterweight talent @SPonzinibbioMMA. As he explains asking to be @Leon_edwardsmma replacement opponent, and why he calls the promotions rankings "bull sh*t." Full interview on @sherdogdotcom soon. #UFCFightIsland7 pic.twitter.com/s50uGsAgDm
— Jason Burgos (@CheapSeatsChat) January 8, 2021
“They removed me (from the rankings). Brian Ortega fought three weeks after me and he’s still in the rankings and he was in the main event (against The Korean Zombie). I asked, why is he in the rankings despite the inactivity? Why does he get a main event, and me (an unranked opponent in Jingliang)?” Ponzinibbio said.
“Listen, I love Brian Ortega. I think he deserves it, he showed to the world he deserves it, he beat a guy and hopefully he becomes a champion. I don’t have anything against him. It’s just our situation’s very similar. For this reason, I repeat, I think the rankings are bullsh*t. I go inside my cage and do my work. That’s it. I represent my culture and my people from Argentina and from Latin American and I put a show inside the cage, man.”
After two years out of the cage, Ponzinibbio is now 34 and has less time to make a title run before he’s out of his fighting prime. The American Top Team product was one of the best welterweights in the world for several years, but health issues bumped him out of the rankings. Let’s see if 2021 is his year.
Do you think Santiago Ponzinibbio should still be ranked in the UFC welterweight top-15?