Sherdog’s Top 10: Rising Stars, 2014 First Edition

Number 10

By Patrick Wyman Nov 4, 2014



10. Michael Page (7-0)


United Kingdom import Page has been tabbed for greatness, or at least notoriety, since he knocked out his overmatched opponent with a 360-degree tornado kick a little more than a minute into the first round of his professional debut -- a feat of acrobatics and skill that was immediately featured on AXS TV’s “Inside MMA.”

The 27-year-old former kickboxer has done little to dampen either the expectations or the hype since then, finishing each of his first six opponents inside the first round before finally going to a decision with UFC veteran Nah-Shon Burrell in October. Now 3-0 under the Bellator banner, with his first outing ending in a devastating knockout , Page has evolved from a one-dimensional, if stunningly skilled striker into a well-rounded mixed martial artist with enormous potential for entertaining violence inside the cage.

Even more than his substantial skills, however, Page owns boatloads of swagger. The welterweight is a compelling personality who always has a quip or bit of trash talk on his lips, and in a sport that is predicated as much on spectacle as it is actual performance, that kind of charisma matters a great deal. Page might not be the hero, but he is happy to play the villain -- the cascade of boos that rained down on him at Bellator 120 was deafening -- and as Chael Sonnen and Josh Koscheck have shown, embracing the heel role can pay just as well.

In Bellator President Scott Coker and Rich Chou, “Venom” has the perfect promoter and matchmaker for his skill sets, people who have a proven track record of booking entertaining fights and making the most of unique talents. With allies like these, Page’s future certainly looks bright.

Number 9 » The 25-year-old can do it all inside the cage, showcasing lightning-fast hands, an explosive wrestling game and big power in all of her strikes. She is an outstanding athlete with great quickness -- the kind of physical tools that are exceptionally hard to find in any weight class and even more so in the new and relatively thin women’s divisions.

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