While we usually discuss fight announcements here (and we still have one), the biggest news this weekend was the rumor that Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) will be reducing its roster by 50 fighters. While the promotion didn’t drop all 50 over the weekend, there were at least six fighters who were released from the roster. Here’s the rundown: Marcus Brimage – Brimage was the most successful overall of the fighters released thus far. “The Bama Beast” had a 4-4 record in the UFC, but he found himself thrown to the wolves more often than not, welcome both Conor McGregor and Cody Garbrandt to the promotion in their respective UFC debuts, and he was knocked out both times. Brimage was most recently knocked out by Jimmie Rivera in Rivera’s UFC debut, which was his fourth loss in five fights overall. Eddie Gordon – Gordon looked like a decent prospect after decimating Dhiego Lima to win the middleweight version of The Ultimate Fighter season 19, but he followed that victory up with three straight losses, most recently getting submitted by Antonio Carlos Junior this past June. Gordon leaves the UFC with a 1-3 record in the promotion. Chris Clements – The Canadian veteran scored a highlight reel knockout over Vik Grujic, but was never able to put together a winning streak in the UFC. He would have gone 2-3 in the promotion but his third round loss to Matt Riddle was ruled a no contest after Riddle tested positive for marijuana metabolites. Clements most recently lost a decision to Nordine Taleb this past April and the 39-year old finishes his UFC stint with a 2-2 (1 no contest) record. Roger Narvaez – The Texas native picked up a surprise victory over now-released Luke Barnatt, but after losing via second round TKO to Elias Theodorou this past March, the promotion felt his services were no longer necessary. Narvaez was 1-2 in the UFC. Christos Giagos – The Greek fighter never quite found his footing in the UFC. He lost to the top competition he faced in Chris Wade and Gilbert Burns, while picking up a win over the now-released Jorge de Oliveira. He leaves the UFC with a 1-2 record in the promotion. Matt Van Buren – Van Buren was a finalist on season 19 of The Ultimate Fighter, getting knocked out by Cody Anderson in the first round. He was also knocked out by Sean O’Connell and while he was rumored to have had a few fights booked, they never materialized. He leaves the UFC with a 0-2 record in the promotion. While several fighters were released, the promotion did announce a pretty exciting featherweight bout for 2016: Jim Hettes vs. Charles Rosa at UFC Fight Night 81 This fight will pit two very exciting grapplers against each other. While neither Jim Hettes or Charles Rosa are very good on the feet, that won’t matter here. While Rosa is a good scrambler and a capable submission artist, I feel he’ll be at a disadvantage in this fight. Rosa was not able to pick up a win in a fight primarily spent on the ground against Dennis Siver, and I think Hettes is a much more dangerous Brazilian jiu-jitsu artist than Siver overall. I would expect Hettes to open at a near 2-1 favorite, although Hettes has not been performing that well against mid-level competition or higher in his UFC career.
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