(Photo courtesy of daylife.com.)
Dennis Hallman after a four-year absence from the organization. Now we’ve learned that the UFC has re-signed another hardy veteran, adding a fight between 38-year-old Vladimir Matyushenko and Igor Pokrajac to UFC 103. A one-time UFC light-heavyweight title contender, Matyushenko went 3-2 in the UFC from 2001-2003, scoring wins over Yuki Kondo, Travis Wiuff, and Pedro Rizzo. Since then, the Janitor has gone 9-1, became the IFL’s light-heavyweight champion, and most recently won a decision over Jason Lambert at Call to Arms 1 in May. It was also reported that 35-year-old PRIDE/UFC vet Chuck Liddell isn’t quite retired, it’s clear what’s going on here: TUF 11: Last Call. The coaches will be Chuck and Tito, the minimum age will be 33, and the winner will receive $100,000 in prescription medication.
Of course, such acquisitions come with a price. As MMA Fanhouse reported, UFC middleweight Thales Leites was released from his contract yesterday, following his dull split-decision loss against Alessio Sakara at UFC 101. And to think, he was the #1 middleweight contender two fights ago; serves him right for trying to use that boring jiu-jitsu stuff. Leites joins Tamdan McCrory, Dan Cramer, and likely George Roop and Danillo Villefort in the sad gentleman’s club of UFC fighters who have recently lost their jobs, meaning that every single bout on UFC 101′s undercard turned out to be a "win or go home" match.