Artem Lobov Granted Released by UFC; Looking to Get New MMA or Boxing Contract

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJanuary 29, 2019

MONCTON, NB - OCTOBER 27:  (R-L) Artem Lobov of Russia punches Michael Johnson in their featherweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event inside Avenir Centre on October 27, 2018 in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

Artem Lobov has asked for and received a release from UFC despite having three fights left on his contract, according to Ariel Helwani of ESPN. 

The 32-year-old is reportedly hoping to get new contracts in mixed martial arts, boxing and kickboxing.

Lobov has a 13-15-1 career record (one no-contest) in MMA, dating back to 2010.

The featherweight has especially struggled in UFC, losing five of his seven fights since debuting with the organization in 2015. He most recently lost to Michael Johnson by unanimous decision last October.

Though he benefitted from his association with fellow Irish star Conor McGregor, Lobov hasn't taken as much advantage of his opportunities in big events.

On the other hand, his and McGregor's coach, John Kavanagh, defended the fighter's career.

"I believe his performances in the cage against the highest level opposition in the world is worthy of a lot more respect that it gets," Kavanagh wrote in a lengthy Facebook post after Lobov's latest loss. "I don’t think Artem has the skills to be a UFC World Champion, I can be honest and state that but he 100 percent has earned the respect of his fellow fighters and shown, independently, he earned his spot on that stage."

Lobov will likely get a chance to continue his fighting career and potentially find more success, however it won't be with UFC.

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