Nate Marquardt finds himself on the outside looking in as Strikeforce fighters prepare to transition over to the UFC.
Strikeforce held its final event on Saturday night, and Marquardt lost his welterweight title to Tarec Saffiedine in a shocking unanimous decision.
The bout will likely be looked back on near the end of 2013 as a candidate for upset of the year.
Before the loss to Saffiedine, Marquardt was thought to be the next breakout welterweight contender to potentially challenge Georges St-Pierre's reign as UFC champion.
Unfortunately, the Marquardt bandwagon fell to pieces before the wheels even started to roll.
The former UFC middleweight contender made headlines after thrashing Tyron Woodley in his welterweight debut to win the vacant Strikeforce title. Against Saffiedine, Marquardt looked like a shell of his usual self. He was hesitant in the stand-up exchanges, which allowed Saffiedine to stay at medium range and rack up leg kicks.
Despite being a world-class fighter, Marquardt has never really shown the ability to overcome adversity. When things aren't going his way, he usually freezes up and becomes passive. He had similar lackluster performances against Chael Sonnen and Yushin Okami.
In June 2011, Marquardt was released from the UFC for failing medical requirements for his UFC on Versus 4 bout against Rick Story.
Does he deserve another shot?
Some fighters have done far more wrong than Marquardt and received a second chance from the UFC. Marquardt is a great role model for the sport. It would be ludicrous to deny him a second opportunity.
The welterweight division is arguably the most stacked weight class in all of MMA, and it certainly wouldn't do any harm to add a fighter like Marquardt to the mix.
UFC President Dana White has managed to overcome personal issues with fighters in the past, and it isn't like he had a huge falling out with Marquardt over personal reasons.
Still, could it be too little, too late for Marquardt?
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