UFC 163: Aldo vs. Zombie – The Cut List

UFC 163 has had to deal with a lot of injuries, to the point that six of the fighters currently on the card don't…

By: Tim Burke | 10 years ago
UFC 163: Aldo vs. Zombie – The Cut List
Bloody Elbow 2.0 | Anton Tabuena

UFC 163 has had to deal with a lot of injuries, to the point that six of the fighters currently on the card don’t even have Wikipedia pages. You know things are bad when that’s the deal. Everyone on the main card is coming off a win, but two of them are fighting in the octagon for the first time and one is returning after a four-year absence from the UFC. The undercard is pretty much the opposite, with only one bout featuring two fighters coming off a win. Not many fighters are on multi-fight losing streaks, but it’s still a pretty weak card overall. That will make this a little harder than usual, but let’s give it a try.

Likely to be cut with a loss

Sheila Gaff – She got blasted in her debut by Sara McMann, and another loss will probably mean the door for Gaff. She’s undersized for the division to begin with and is going to have trouble competing with the bigger ladies at 135. If they started up a 125 lb, she’d probably come back. But for now, 0-2 means unemployment.

Josh Clopton – He hasn’t fought in almost two years, and lost his only UFC fight to date at the TUF 14 Finale. If he loses to Yahya, there’s absolutely no reason to keep him around. He can go back to crab fishing.

Bristol Marunde – I was really surprised he wasn’t cut after his last fight to be honest. He lost to Jacare in Strikeforce, then got knocked out with a Clint Hester elbow in his UFC debut. If he continues racking up L’s in a new weight class, especially against a debuting fighter this time around, they’ll send him down the road.

Possibly cut with a loss

Thiago Santos – No, he’s not the ball-crunching heavyweight from Bellator. He’s a 29-year-old 8-1 Brazilian “prospect” from TUF Brazil 2 who was knocked out two official fights ago and hasn’t fought in a year. It’s possible they give him another fight for being a late replacement, but they’ve one-and-done a lot of fighters in the same situation lately. Santos’ saving grace might be that he’s a WW taking a fight a MW.

Anthony Perosh – I honestly think he’ll just retire if he loses. He’s 41, and got his time in as a good Australian fighter in the Octagon. The Jimmo KO was nasty and if he gets subbed by Vinny, it’s probably time to call it a day.

Amanda Nunes – Her fight with Gaff comes in a division where there aren’t many people signed right now, but there’s some decent talent waiting in the wings. This is her UFC debut, but she lost to Sarah D’Alelio in her last fight so she’s not exactly coming in on fire. I’d normally think she’d get at least two UFC fights, but I wouldn’t be surprised if she got cut and replaced by someone like Julia Budd either.

Vinny Magalhaes – Normally I wouldn’t have a guy who’s 1-1 on his current UFC run on this list. But the dude straight out said he should be cut if he loses to Perosh. How do you not pull the trigger on that when the fighter himself is saying it?

Ian McCall – Uncle Creepy was the hardest guy on the card to place. He’s 0-2-1 in the UFC, but that’s against the top two consensus flyweights in the world. A loss to Santos would be absolutely brutal for him. But would it be enough to get him cut? He’s still an extremely talented fighter. I’m honestly not sure what they would do in that situation, so I hedged and put him here.

Iliarde Santos – Yes, he lost first fight out of his natural weight class on short notice, and to a beast like Yuri Alcantara at that. This is his UFC flyweight debut, and he’s facing another tough customer in McCall. Will he get another chance if he loses again? Probably, I don’t think it’s bankable enough to move him to the likely to stay category.

Viscardi Andrade – Another TUF Brazil 2 guy, but at least he made the semi-finals. He could definitely be gone after one fight since they don’t seem that high on TUF Brazil 2 talent.

Ednaldo Oliveira – Oliveira is one of the iffy maybes. He lost his debut at HW to Gabriel Gonzaga and decided to drop to LHW, but pulled out of two straight fights due to injury and was finally matched up with Robert Drysdale. Now Drysdale’s out, and he’s facing a completely different type of fighter in Barroso. Will they give him another shot because this is his LHW debut? Probably. But they might cut him just so they don’t have to deal with him backing out of fights (combined with an 0-2 UFC record, of course).

Likely safe regardless of the outcome

Jose Aldo and Chan Sung Jung – One’s the champ and a top P4P guy. The other is one of the most popular featherweights in the promotion and brings in a unique demographic. Something ridiculous would have to happen for either of them to lose their jobs.

Lyoto Machida and Phil Davis – Both men are top-ten light heavyweights that usually fight near the top of cards. They’re not lacking in job security.

Cezar Ferreira – TUF Brazil 1 champ who hasn’t fought since he won that contract. He’d get another shot even with a loss or two.

Thales Leites and Tom Watson – Leites, a former MW title challenger, steps into the octagon for the first time in four years after a 6-1 run outside the promotion. They’ll give him at least two fights to re-establish himself. And Watson’s not the most talented guy in the world, but he can brawl and he can talk. That’s enough for him to stick around for a while.

John Lineker and Jose Maria Tome – Flyweight’s thin. A Lineker loss just puts him back into the middle of the pack, and Tome is a highly-regarded guy with a 33-3 (2 NC) record, hasn’t lost in his last 17 fights (16 wins, 1 NC), and usually finishes. He’s a quality prospect that will be given another chance.

Sergio Moraes and Neil Magny – They’re both coming off UFC wins, which makes them unique on this undercard. Moraes is also a TUF Brazil finalist with a decent following and some good skills. Magny owned Jon Manley at UFC 157, and one loss isn’t enough to show him out of the promotion.

Rani Yahya – I always thought Yahya was too small for featherweight, but he’s made the most of his UFC run thus far. He’s 3-1 and on a two-fight win streak. A loss will hurt his standing, but he’ll still have a job.

Francimar Barroso – Normally a debuting fighter would be in the maybe category, but Barroso has a few things going for him. The biggest is that he’s from Nova Uniao and is good friends with headliner Aldo. He’s also a late replacement in a division where they have trouble getting late replacements due to weight cuts (light heavyweight). He’s a standup fighter too, so he’ll go down swinging. He’ll get a shot on a future Brazil card pretty much for sure.

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