When Nate Marquardt was released from the UFC just one day prior to what would be his welterweight debut, many wondered if we would ever see him inside of the cage again.
The news of his release came as quite a shock on June 25, when UFC President Dana White announced via Twitter that Marquardt had failed his medicals and would be pulled from his scheduled bout with dominant UFC welterweight Rick Story at the UFC on Versus 4 event in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Never fear, Marquardt fans. Liam Fisher, head of business development at British MMA promotion BAMMA, announced this morning that Marquardt has indeed been signed.
“As soon as we received word that the Pennsylvania State Athletic Commission lifted Marquardt’s suspension we jumped at the chance to sign him. He is a top ranked contender and an asset to any promotion. Words cannot express how excited we are that Marquardt is now fighting under the BAMMA banner,” said Fisher.
Marquardt is more than pleased with his decision, and as one would expect, had offers from several of the larger MMA promotions that are not owned by Zuffa, LLC.
Marquardt explains, “Offers came in from several fight promotions, but we felt that BAMMA was definitely the best fit. They put on high-quality shows, stack their cards with top-level fighters, and sign those fighters to multi-fight deals. They are also the only fight organization in the UK that implements PED testing. To be honest, that is one of the main reasons that we chose BAMMA. I want to prove to my fans and to the world that I'm the real deal and that I belong on top.”
Just because he’s no longer fighting in the UFC does not mean that Marquardt will be facing lesser opponents.
“Now that my suspension has been lifted and I’ve found a home with a new fight promotion, I can move forward and turn my focus back to my fight career. This has been an extremely difficult time, and I’m very thankful to those who stood by me. I’m looking forward to getting back to fighting and there are some guys out there that I would definitely like to get my hands on. I'm talking about the fighters that kicked me while I was down. BAMMA is known for signing top talent...so I may just get my chance," said Marquardt.
See Marquardt tonight on ESPN’s MMA Live at 10:15 PM GMT.