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Tag: and now he’s fired

And Now He’s Fired: Paulo Thiago Cut by UFC Following Three Straight Losses


(Paulo Thiago gets cracked by Sean Spencer during their fight in September. / Photo via Getty)

After losing his last three fights — and seven out of his last nine — Brazilian welterweight veteran Paulo Thiago has been released by the UFC. Thiago most recently competed at last month’s UFC Fight Night 51: Bigfoot vs. Arlovski, where he lost a unanimous decision to Sean Spencer on the prelims.

Thiago made his UFC debut in February 2009 as a 10-0 prospect, carrying a rad backstory as a B.O.P.E. supercop. He was immediately thrown to the wolves, drawing Josh Koscheck as his debut opponent at UFC 95. Koscheck was a heavy favorite to beat the unheralded newcomer. Instead, this happened:

Thiago dropped a decision to Jon Fitch in his next outing, but then posted back to back wins against Jacob Volkmann and Mike Swick. Suddenly, Paulo Thiago seemed like a legitimate threat in the welterweight division. Unfortunately, that was essentially his career peak in the UFC. He would never win two consecutive fights again, and the opponents he lost to went from top-of-the-food-chain (Martin Kampmann, Diego Sanchez) to pretty dangerous (Siyar Bahadurzada, Dong Hyun Kim) to downright obscure (Brandon Thatch, Gasan Umalatov). The last time people were talking about Paulo Thiago, it was because of his gig working security at the World Cup.

Before his latest loss to Sean Spencer, Thiago signed a new four-fight deal with the UFC, but of course, UFC contracts can be ended at any time by the promoter, because they’re not exactly “contracts” in the traditional sense; don’t get me started. Good luck with your next gig, Paulo.

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And Now He’s Fired: TUF 14 Alum Steven Siler Given the Boot Following Three-Fight Skid


(via Fox Sports) 

Like Chris Camozzi before him, Steven Siler was perhaps one of the more unexpected success stories to come out of The Ultimate Fighter. After being paired against the heavily-favored WEC vet Micah Miller in his TUF 14 elimination bout and emerging victorious via third round submission, Siler was viciously knocked out of the tournament by eventual season winner Diego Brandao. Like countless veterans of the reality show before him, most expected to see Siler put on a couple decent performances in the UFC before being released for simply not being up to par.

But as losses so often do, Siler’s quick defeat to Brandao actually fueled his 5-1 start in the promotion. While “Super” was always considered a grappling specialist with limited standup skills once was, his unanimous decision victory over fellow TUF standout Cole Miller at UFC on FX 2 painted him as a different fighter entirely. His combinations were quick and precise, his footwork on point. Siler lit up Miller for three rounds and sent a message to the featherweight division that he was a force to be reckoned with. A dominant victory over Joey Gambino would follow, along with wins over Kurt Holobaugh and former WEC champ Mike Brown.

The past year and a half, however, has been an incredibly frustrating period for Siler…

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And Now He’s Fired: Chris Camozzi Announces Second UFC Release After Four Straight Losses


(Photo via Camozzi’s Instagram/Vital Imagery)

For the past four years, TUF 11 alum Chris Camozzi has become one of the most reliable, if not completely overlooked staples of the UFC’s middleweight division. In an era of the sport that sees champions go an entire year without defending their belt, Camozzi was the increasingly rare kind of fighter that neither turned down an opponent nor pulled out of fights due to injury more often than he didn’t. He was a workhorse, a gamer — a guy the UFC could consistently count on to kick off a pay-per-view (or carry the FS1 prelims) — and should be remembered as one of the promotion’s most consistent scrappers during his two-tour run in the octagon.

But Camozzi’s fallen on hard times as of late. He’s dropped his past four fights in a row to increasingly lower ranked fighters, most recently suffering a controversial split decision loss to Rafael Natal at Fight Night 50 in September. And yesterday, word of his release from the UFC was made public by none other than Camozzi himself, who posted this even-headed and grateful goodbye on the blog of his MMA apparel website, PerformanceMMA. Give it a read after the jump.

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And Now He’s Fired: Francis “Frankie Cars” Carmont Axed Following Three Straight Losses


(“Hang on a second, Frankie, cause you just blew my f*cking mind.” via Getty)

Francis Carmont — or as they refer to him on the CME podcast, “Frankie Cars” — has experienced one of the more surprising career downswings of them all in recent months. A training partner of Georges St. Pierre up at Quebec’s Tristar gym, Carmont kicked off his UFC career with six straight victories, including wins over Costa Philippou, Chris Camozzi, and Lorenz Larkin to name a few. While his grapple-heavy style was never exactly crowd-pleasing (and some of his aforementioned victories overshadowed by questionable judging decisions), Carmont was steadily working his way toward becoming a top contender in the middleweight division according to many.

Then 2014 happened, and Carmont suddenly couldn’t buy a win. In successive appearances, he dropped a pair of unanimous decisions to Ronaldo Souza and CB Dollaway at Fight Night 36 and 41, respectively. If that wasn’t bad enough, poor Frankie Cars was then crumbled by the patented overhand right of Thales Leites (a.k.a Tally Lates) at Fight Night 49 last month, making it three straight losses for the once promising French Canadian.

And today, the news of Carmont’s release comes straight from the horse’s mouth, er, Facebook page:

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And Now He’s Fired: Bellator Cuts Phil Baroni for Coming to War Machine’s Defense


(Surely a “Wistful Waistcoat Wednesday” is on the horizon. via Baroni’s instagram.)

Scott Coker is not fucking around, folks. Just a few weeks into his position as the new President of Bellator MMA, the former Strikeforce CEO has already shifted the promotion’s schedule from weekly to monthly eventsgranted Eddie Alvarez the unconditional release he’s been requesting for years now, and severed all ties with War Machine. As a matter of fact, Coker doesn’t want his new promotion to be associated with anyone even within Koppenhaver’s social circle, it seems, as longtime supporter/friend Phil Baroni found out the hard way yesterday.

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And Now He’s Fired: Bellator Fires War Machine Over Domestic Abuse Allegations [UPDATED]


(War Machine in 2007 / Photo via Getty)

Bellator has fired War Machine after a report from TMZ claimed he was involved in a domestic violence investigation.

TMZ’s report claimed the domestic dispute involved three people at War Machine’s Las Vegas home. Two people were reportedly injured so bad they had to go to the hospital. The report claimed one victim was War Machine’s “significant other.”

A tweet from Christy Mack, War Machine’s sort of girlfriend (the “it’s complicated” relationship status was made for them), seems to confirm the report:

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And Now He’s Fired: Chael Sonnen Axed by FOX For Being a No Good, Steroid-Using Double Cheater


(Yep, we’re sticking to our *guns* with this photo. BA-DUM-TSH!)

How about some actual news for a change?

On the subject of Chael Sonnen‘s second straight drug test failure, I believe Old Dad summed it up best when he said that the American Gangster had a “cheater’s dream cocktail” flowing through his veins. And indeed, Sonnen tested positive for not trace amounts of HGH, EPO, WWE, TRL, HSN, and BET when retested, which made his previous failed drug test prior to UFC 175 all the harder to swallow.

It’s important to note that Sonnen’s second test was administered before the results of his first test were made public, meaning that he was still technically competing while loaded to gills with a veritable pharmacy heading into UFC 175. Following his all but forced retirement shortly thereafter, the question quickly became not where Sonnen’s fighting career was headed, but if the UFC/FOX would continue to employ a multiple time steroid cheat simply because he was charismatic in front of a camera. It would send a hell of a mixed message to the rest of their fighters in their roster, that’s for sure.

Well today brings an answer, and that answer is “Eff no.”(via a UFC-FOX press release sent out this morning):

The UFC and FOX Sports organizations announced today the termination of their respective broadcasting services agreements with analyst Chael Sonnen. This decision comes in light of Sonnen failing a second test conducted by the Nevada Athletic Commission for banned substances in June. Sonnen was previously under temporary suspension by the Nevada Athletic Commission for failing an initial test conducted in May.

I guess this means Sonnen won’t be given the opportunity to defend himself via a laughably rushed interview on America’s Pregame, then?

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And Now He’s Fired: Brandon Vera Axed by UFC (Again), Following 16-Fight Stint With Promotion


(A fan art tribute to a legendary broken nose, by FLYD.)

Though it’s not entirely clear when the axe came down, Fox Sports has confirmed that UFC heavyweight/light-heavyweight Brandon Vera was released from the promotion sometime after his TKO loss to Ben Rothwell last August. It was Vera’s second consecutive defeat, following a previous KO at the hands of Shogun Rua, and it dropped his overall UFC record to 8-7 with one no-contest.

Any post-mortem of Brandon Vera’s career has to focus on what a disappointment it turned out to be. (I’m not trying to be a dick, here; I bet Vera feels the same way.) This is a guy who went from hot-shot contender to hapless journeyman seemingly overnight. The Fox Sports article summarizes it well:

Vera burst upon the scene in Oct. 2005, defeating Fabiano Scherner via TKO in the first of four consecutive victories, a streak that emboldened him to infamously promise that he would hold two UFC title belts at the same time.

He never even fought for the title.

Vera was at one time slated to fight for the UFC heavyweight championship, but a contract dispute put his career on ice in the fall of 2006. By the time it was resolved, nearly a year had gone by, and Vera was never able to recapture his previous magic and reach the high bar he’d set for himself.

By late 2006, Vera had every right to carry a big ego. He had a flawless pro record of 8-0 with all wins by stoppage, and was fresh off a 69-second TKO of former champ Frank Mir, who was struggling to make a comeback at the time (and eventually succeeded). As it turned out, Mir was the last notable opponent that Vera managed to beat. And if you wanted to be brutally honest about it, you could argue that Mir is the only notable opponent that Vera has ever beaten.

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Jason High Released From UFC After Shoving Referee at UFC Fight Night 42


(At least he’s taking it well. / Photo via MMAJunkie)

The axe has finally dropped on Jason High, following his regrettable shoving of referee Kevin Mulhall at last weekend’s UFC Fight Night 42. UFC president Dana White confirmed High’s firing in yesterday’s installment of “The Download,” his weekly address on UFC.com. Though White didn’t watch the “Henderson vs. Khabilov” event live due to illness (more on that later), he acted swiftly as soon as he heard what happened:

“What I did find out is that I guess that Jason High kid got up and pushed a referee – he’s cut,” White said in disgust. “I’m going to cut him. I look at that the way (Paul) Daley put his hands on his opponent after a fight was over. You don’t ever, ever f****** touch a referee, ever. You’re done here. He’s been apologizing on Twitter, but he’s done.”

I feel bad for High. It’s not like he went full-Yvel on Mulhall, and yet he could be shut out of the UFC for life, for a single bad decision. On the other hand, an example needs to be set that you never put your hands on an official, no matter how much you think the stoppage sucked. On the other, other hand:

“Say that Chael Sonnen was the one that lightly pushed the ref and that Jason High failed the drug test. Does Dana instantly fire Chael and then go on TV to publicly defend High?

There’s some truth to that. Maybe High’s biggest crime was simply being expendable.

Dana also confirmed in the “Download” column that the UFC will be paying Ross Pearson his win bonus after Pearson was blatantly robbed against Diego Sanchez, and hoped that the judge who scored the fight 30-27 for Sanchez (Jeff Collins) never judges another professional fight. Also, he was struggling with allergies while relaxing in Maine and buying cars while drunk:

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Chopped: Seven of the Most Surprising UFC Cuts in Recent Memory


(Photo via Getty. Depression via reality.)

The news that Jake Shields had been axed by the UFC on Tuesday was not taken lightly by MMA fans who had referred to the former Strikeforce champion as “Jake Shieldzzzz” for years prior. Days later, we are still trying to make sense of the decision to cut Shields following his first loss in two and a half years, but it was an easy one to make in the eyes of Dana White, who basically told reporters that Shields was released because he didn’t “WAR!!” enough.

As several publications have noted, the firing of Shields has once again highlighted the UFC’s ever-burgeoning “entertainment over sport” mindset when it comes to the legitimacy of their product. It’s the reason guys like Leonard Garcia and Dan Hardy remained with the promotion after two, three, four losses in a row and why Ben Askren was never even given a shot in the first place despite being a top 10 welterweight on damn near everybody’s list. Where just a few years ago, the Tank Abbotts of the world were ridiculed for their one-dimensional, bar brawler-esque approach to MMA, they are now being praised for their ability to entertain and absorb punishment over actually win a fight.

MMA is a sport. The UFC is a spectacle. White’s belief that Gina Carano would deserve an immediate title shot should she sign with the promotion is proof of this. The signing of Brock Lesnar after one fight is proof of this. James Toney is proof of this. We are living in an era of the UFC where the “Just Bleed” guy has risen from psychotic fanboy to upper management, and unfortunately, the firing of Jake Shields was not the first of its kind…

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