("My career went that-a-way.")
It looks like all those weak performances are finally catching up with Brandon Vera. The Truth — who has gone 1-3 in his last four fights, most recently dropping a split decision to Keith Jardine at UFC 89 — is reportedly finalizing a new contract extension with the UFC. I’d be willing to bet that he was forced to take a pay cut, as his $100,000 to show/$100,000 to win salary made him unquestionably the most overpaid fighter on the UFC’s roster. But even more painful than the possible money issue is who he’s fighting next. According to 5oz., Vera will be taking on Michael Patt at UFC 96 (March 6th; Columbus, Ohio).
So basically, the former top heavyweight contender is now at the bottom of the light-heavyweight ladder, taking on a guy who was trounced by Tim Boetsch in his UFC debut. Vera has gone from prospect, to star, back to prospect again. He’s one train stop away from Palookaville. As long as the UFC continues to pursue expansion into the Philippines, they’ll want to keep Vera around, even if it’s just to beat up unknown caucasians. But it’s not like he’ll be headlining a card anytime soon.
Of course if Vera loses to Patt, he’s done. We’ll have witnessed one of the most dramatic rises-and-falls in recent MMA history. It’s not a very likely scenario, but this is MMA — and this is Brandon Vera — so anything can happen.