UFC cuts top 10 middleweight

A top 10 contender has just been removed from his fight and the UFC roster entirely.

By: Anton Tabuena | 2 weeks ago

The UFC has parted ways with two fighters, one of them being a longtime top ranked contender.

The news comes from UFC Roster Watch, which is an algorithm that tracks activity from the promotion’s roster. The least surprising among the recent releases is Zarah Fairn, who is 6-6 with four straight losses. She also typically fights at women’s featherweight, which the promotion doesn’t seem to plan to invest in anymore.

The other cut was a bit more confounding, considering his status and how he even had a fight booked.

Derek Brunson removed from fight and UFC roster

MMA: UFC 271-Cannonier vs Brunson, Feb 12, 2022; Houston, Texas, UNITED STATES; Jared Cannonier (red gloves) fights Derek Brunson (Blue Gloves) during UFC 271 at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports, 12.02.2022 22:27:06, 17676237, NPStrans, Derek Brunson, TopPic, Toyota Center, MMA PUBLICATIONxINxGERxSUIxAUTxONLY Copyright: xTroyxTaorminax 17676237
Troy Taormina / USA TODAY Sports / IMAGO

Derek Brunson was scheduled to face Roman Dolidze at UFC 295 this November. Suddenly, he’s been confirmed to not only be out of that bout, but out of the UFC entirely.

Brunson is currently the number 8 middleweight, and has been a top ranked contender for almost a decade. His release has been confirmed, but it’s still unclear why he was removed from both his fight and the roster.

Brunson’s original opponent offered some well wishes on social media, before asking if Robert Whittaker or Jared Cannonier would like to step in to face him.

The 39-year-old Brunson is 23-9 in his career, with wins over stars from different eras in the sport such as Darren Till, Kevin Holland, Uriah Hall, Lyoto Machida, and Chris Leben. After an impressive five-fight win streak from 2019 to 2021, Brunson dropped his last two bouts against title contenders Jared Cannonier and Dricus du Plessis.

February 12, 2022, Houston, Texas, Houston, TX, United States: HOUSTON, TX - FEBRUARY 12: Derek Brunson prepares to fight Jared Cannonier in their middleweight fight during the UFC 271 event at Toyota Center on February 12, 2022 in Houston, Texas, United States. Houston, Texas United States - ZUMAp175 20220212_zsa_p175_158 Copyright: xLouisxGrassex
IMAGO / ZUMA Wire / Louis Grasse

Derek Brunson now wants a Jake Paul payday

Interestingly enough, soon after his release, Brunson called out Jake Paul to try and get a lucrative fight with the popular boxer. He also posted an old screenshot from 2021 where Paul asked Dana White to release Brunson and give him “permission to make some real money.”

Tecia Torres only on baby leave

Tecia Torres was also flagged by UFC Roster Watch, but as the longtime strawweight contender confirmed, she’s still in the UFC roster. The top 10 contender was only marked as inactive after giving birth and plans to return in 2024.

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About the author
Anton Tabuena
Anton Tabuena

Anton Tabuena is the Managing Editor for Bloody Elbow. He’s been covering MMA and combat sports since 2009, and has also fought in MMA, Muay Thai and kickboxing.

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