UFC Trimming The Fat: 20 Fighters On The Chopping Block

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UFC Trimming The Fat:  20 Fighters On The Chopping Block

The economy is effecting all of us, including the UFC.

People across the country have less expendable money, which can be seen in the decrease in PPV buys.  This in turn may possibly lead to less frequent UFC PPV events.  Fewer events means the need for less fighters.

Dana White is an intelligent businessman and knows that he cannot continue to maintain the number of fighters currently under contract with the UFC regardless of the frequency of PPV events.

Fighters have to battle.  They get paid to fight.  The UFC needs to focus more on entertaining and marketable fighters and not fighters that are merely scraping by.

Below is a list of 20 fighters that I think could potentially be cut by the UFC in the near future and one that I don't want the UFC to sign.

Houston Alexander (Light Heavyweight)

He is an older fighter at 36.  He has a 2-3 record.  His last three fights were losses by either knockout or submission in the first round.  Bye Bye!

Alan Belcher (Middleweight)

He can't win in big fights.  He is 4-3.  His losses are to mediocre/below-average opponents such as Jason Day and Kendall Grove.  Back to mid-level promotions.

Roan Carneiro (Welterweight)

He has lost his last two fights and has a record of 2-3.  He is a poor finisher as most of his fights go to a decision.  Ultimately, he is not overly marketable.  He needs a big win.

Ryo Chonan (Welterweight)

Generally loses to talented fighters (Parisyan, Filho, Henderson).  Relies too heavily upon his win against Anderson Silva.  What have you done for me lately?

Rich Clementi (Lightweight)

He has faced poor competition lately.  He can't finish his fights, as his last three fights have gone to a decision.  He is getting up there in age at 32 years old.  Not an overly impressive record at 5-3.  Pit him against a strong opponent and he will show his weaknesses.

Luke Cummo (Welterweight)

Materialized from the TUF 2 house.  Lost two straight fights (McCrory and Fioravanti) to average fighters.  No big wins and a record of 3-4.  One more loss to an average fighter and he is back on the regional scene.

Hermes Franca (Lightweight)

More like a gate keeper for the division than a contender.  Consistently loses to competent opponents.  He was cut once already and has a 6-4 record, which is nothing to write home about.  If at first you don't succeed...you might not succeed the second time either.

Manny Gamburyan (Lightweight)

Knocked out by Rob Emerson in 12 seconds, which incidentally cost me $20.  He is also injury prone.  Perhaps the "Manvel" will be better suited for iron welding.

Kendall Grove (Middleweight)

As a result of winning The Ultimate Fighter, he earned an UFC contract.  His 4-2 record in the UFC is decent, however he has no big wins.  He recently had consecutive first round losses by TKO.  He needs to find his motivation, or find the classifieds.

Ed Herman (Middleweight)

He can't win "the big one".  With a 3-4 record, he has losses to Belcher and Maia.  His short fuse gives him a short leash with the UFC.

Heath Herring (Heavyweight)

He is losing ground in the heavyweight division.  He's a savvy veteran, but now more of a stepping stone for upcoming talent.  He has five losses in his last 10 fights.  More of a gate keeper than a top 10 talent.  The "Texas Crazy Horse" may be grazing in a different pasture soon.

Chris Leben (Middleweight)

Drugs, drugs, drugs.  The UFC should consider their image.  The bad boy gig got him far, but not that far.  He can't beat a decent fighter.  Did I mention he lost to Kalib Starnes.  Perhaps he could see a rematch with Mr. Starnes in a new promotion...if Kalib ever stops running.

Chris Lytle (Welterweight)

Bottom line is that he can't beat talented fighters and he is 34 years old.  If he can't beat Marcus Davis, it might be lights out for his UFC career.

Jason MacDonald (Middleweight)

Losses to Maia, Okami, Franklin, and Cote prove that he isn't a top tier fighter.  His defeat to Kalib Starnes is a skid-mark on his resume.  He is one loss away from getting the pink slip.  But with a nickname like "the athlete" I am sure he has a few other professional sports leagues to fall back on if MMA doesn't work.

Drew McFedries (Middleweight)

Loss to UFC newcomer Mike Massenzio and then followed that up with a loss to Thales Leites, both by first round submission.  He is 3-4 and needs to fight in a smaller promotion.  I would bet that he is more likely to get me a McFry than a victory in the UFC in the coming months.

Nate Quarry (Middleweight)

He is clogging the middleweight division.  He is 5-2, which is mildly respectable.  However, he was on the receiving end of a highlight KO by Rich Franklin and was subbed in under two minutes by Demain Maia. 

He is also injury prone.  Perhaps he's better suited as a corner man than a fighter, as seen in TUF 1.  As they say, those who can't fight, teach.

Pete Sell (Welterweight)

His last name says it all..."sell". He has a 2-4 record and recently dropped to welterweight.  Most importantly, he has a terrible chin.  I expect him to literally get knocked out of the UFC.

Matt Serra (Welterweight)

Rarely fights more than once, let alone twice, in a year.  Has had so many injuries, his favorite website is www.webmd.com.  He isn't getting any younger at 34.  After his upcoming fight with Matt Huges, I hope they both retire.

Brandon Vera (Light Heavyweight)

He was once so promising...now only "what ifs" remain.  His 5-3 record is misleading as he is 1-3 in his last four fights.  He recently dropped to LHW, where he had a boring victory over Reese Andy and a loss to Keith Jardine.  Ultimately..."the truth" is he just isn't that good.  A stint in Strikeforce could do him well.

Paul Taylor (Welterweight)

He has lost three out of his last four fights.  His last three fights have gone to decision.  It is highly doubtful he would have much of a following if he fought in the U.S.  Perhaps a perfect candidate for the new season of TUF.  Otherwise, he needs to fight regionally in America to improve his marketability.

Krzysztof Soszynski (Light Heavyweight)

Okay, so he isn't on contract...YET.  He was a favorite on TUF 9.  Although he may have the "look", he doesn't have the talent.  He has a poor ground game and average stand up.  He seemed to have a poor attitude rooting against his ex-teammate at Team Quest, Vinny, and his pranks annoyed me. 

Hiring him would merely jumble the middle of the LHW division.  Not to mention avoiding the headache of typing his name more than once.  The LHW division does not need another average fighter, there are enough gate keepers already.
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Perhaps you picked up on the number of middleweight and welterweight fighters on the list.  This is due to the traffic jam in the middle of these two divisions.  There is an obvious boundary between the good and average fighters in the MW and WW division. 

Removing a few of the less exciting and marketable fighters in these divisions will allow the other mediocre fighters to have a greater chance at flourishing and improving.
Please feel free to disagree with some of the fighters I included or add some fighters to the list.  However, there will be more cuts in the UFC.  It is inevitable.
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