Rankings can be created using:
- an automated system based on mathematical formulas
- the opinions of journalists and experts
- public polls
- the personal preferences of promotions or individuals
These are all legitimate ways to establish rankings, but most people would prefer rankings to be generated by an automated system that uses calculations based on quantifiable facts.
When looking at the timeframe of the fights, the following are typical methods used to generate scores for the individual fighters:
- Career Score- Fights from the entire career are used to calculate this score. It doesn't take into consideration the date when each fight happened. All fights have the same significance (whether they are from yesterday or from 10 years ago) in the Career Score calculation.
- Midterm Score- Only fights from a certain time frame are considered. Having Midterm defined as a period of 3 years, means that just the fights that have occurred in the last 3 years will be used to calculate the Midterm Score. As time progresses, older fights will fade away and will not be considered. All fights in the Midterm period are treated in the same way (not considering their order).
- Recent Score - Only recent (last 18 months) fights are used for this score. Anything that has happened before the 18 month time frame doesn't matter. The more recent fights are slightly more significant. The latest fight has a sizable impact.
- Score for the Last 4 fights - Only the last 4 fights are used to calculate this score. More recent fight is more significant. The latest fight has the biggest impact on this score. There is no timeframe for those 4 fights. A fighter could have fought all 4 fights within the last year, or have them distributed throughout multiple years.