Wednesday, 6 March 2013

UFC Gets Brutal with Fighters

Over the past week or so, it has been a fairly traumatic time for many fighters among the UFC I imagine. A total of 19 fighters have been released by the promotion, and not in the usual fashion either. Not all new fighters, all playing their trade on the undercard, oh no! The UFC has released some pretty big names today. Most with impressive records!
First off the bat, Jon Fitch. Okay, I know he isn’t the most popular fighter in the world. But for a fighter who has such a good record, and was part of the title picture until Johny Hendricks knocked him out, this shocked me completely. I’m aware he only had one win in his last four fights, but he had only lost his last fight, against a big welterweight, and top fighter, Demian Maia. Usually, it was a three strike rule for this sort of deal, but with Fitch’s popularity lower than most fighters in the welterweight division, it seems like his fighting style, grinding out decision wins, has finally worn thin with Joe Silva, who has wielded the axe, and chopped him.
Other fighters that have been cut are British trio Terry Etim, Paul Sass and Che Mills. All featured on the UFC on FUEL TV 7 card this past weekend, that I covered for H4TV, and all lost. Their opponents came with excellent game plans, and wrestled their way to victories, must to the chagrin of the fans in Wembley. But that doesn’t matter. What matters is the decision. All of which were losses, and even though Che Mills took to twitter, and pleaded for another chance with head honcho Dana White, but it seems like his pleas have fallen on deaf ears. The British stock continues to fall within the UFC, the amount of British fighters the UFC have on their books with more than five fights, now down to just five fighters.
As previously mentioned, I was at UFC on FUEL TV 7 this past Saturday, and the fighters on that card who are now done with the UFC are the aforementioned trio of Etim, Sass and Mills, along with Josh Grispi, Ulysses Gomez, Motonobu Tezuka and Jorge Santiago, taking it up to a whopping total of SEVEN fighters who were fighting for their job on that card.
No doubt other promotions will be licking their lips at the thought of these fighters being on their books. Jon Fitch recently said he desperately needed the money from one of his fights, so he’ll be looking to sign with somebody else as soon as possible, my bet, would be the biggest competitor to the UFC, which would now be Bellator. I imagine the British trio could either fight for Bellator, or return back home and fight for BAMMA, Cage Warriors, or UCMMA. Jorge Santiago would likely return to Japan, where he has found a lot of success, along with Tezuka. Some fighters will find themselves in the wilderness though, due to the dominance the UFC owns over the MMA world, a few probably having to go back to local circuits to try and build their way back up.
Also, this past week has seen Matt Riddle get released because of a failed drugs test. This was his second within the space of seven months, but for a fighter who needs marijuana medically to calm him down (Riddle has Attention Deficit Disorder), and it is quite harsh considering the amount of TRT (Testosterone Replacement Therapy) floating around the UFC at the moment, yet none of those fighters are getting cut right now! After winning four fights in a row, and two of them both cut to no contests because of a medical marijuana mishap, you know, it could have been handled better I reckon, but, the UFC was right to cut him. Two failed drugs tests, it can't fly in the best promotion for MMA in the world. Riddle has protested, saying how he quit three weeks before his fight, and that he's quit with less time before, and passed, so who knows how this happened, but it did unfortunately for him. Whether Mills will return to the UFC, like Brandon Vera did after Thiago Silva was caught using banned substances, remains to be seen, but I would say it's unlikely in all honesty.
The full list of released fighters is as follows:
Heavyweight: Mike Russow  Light Heavyweight: Vladimir Matyushenko, Wagner Prado Welterweight: Jon Fitch, Che Mills, Jay Hieron, Jorge Santiago, Simeon Thoresen, Mike Stumpf, Matt Riddle
 Lightweight: Jacob Volkmann, Paul Sass, C.J. Keith, Terry Etim
 Featherweight: Josh Grispi, Diego Nunes, Milton Vieira
 Bantamweight: Motonobu TezukaFlyweight: Ulysses Gomez

By Dan Lloyd (@drl_nufc)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Express your opinion!