It’s win or go home lately inside the Octagon … literally.
The UFC — in a move to trim its roster and offer the better fighters more opportunities to compete — has once again handed out a couple of pink slips, this time to lightweight Caol Uno and middleweight Lucio Linhares.
Both fighters have been removed from the official roster.
These combatants join Eliot Marshall, Jake Rosholt and Houston Alexander on the growing list of recent Zuffa contract casualties.
Uno (25-13-5) made his return to the Octagon at UFC 99: "The Comeback" in June 2009 after more than five years fighting for K-1 overseas. Unfortunately he was never able to get anything going, posting a lackluster 0-2-1 record including his most recent loss to Gleison Tibau at last month's UFC 111 event.
The UFC had apparently seen enough, according to MMA Fighting.
Like Uno, Linhares (13-6) went winless in his short stint under the UFC banner -- though he may have been thrown into the deep end of the pool before learning how to swim. Rousimar Palhares and Yushin Okami back-to-back? A pretty tall order for any fighter.
From the "Spartan," courtesy of Tatame.com:
"I think this was ‘the’ fight. I gave my best, didn’t give up and if I have to leave, I’ll do it with my head up. It’s really complicated my situation on UFC. Two defeats in two fight, regardless the fact I was against two top contenders. I’m not sure I’ll fight for the UFC anymore… I hope I will."
The only positive to being released is that opportunities to fight still exist outside of Zuffa. Don't be surprised to see either one of these talents reappear in competing promotions sooner rather than later.
If nothing else this latest news puts more pressure on fighters to not only win, but perform well if given the chance to fight for the UFC. It also ensures that, hopefully, we see more of the top fighters competing against better competition more often.