Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE
Melvin Guillard suffered his fourth defeat in his past five fights at the hands of Jamie Varner last weekend at UFC 155 in Las Vegas. "The Young Assassin" has been a staple of the UFC roster for some time now, but was the most recent defeat enough to get him released from the organization? UFC President Dana White weighs in.
After putting together five-straight wins from the beginning of 2010 to mid-2011, Guillard was seemingly at the peak of his career and on the verge of a title shot in the lightweight division. Then he ran into Joe Lauzon.
"J-Lau" stopped Guillard by submission in just 47-seconds at UFC 135, bringing an abrupt end to momentum of the 29-year-old. Another submission loss to Jim Miller followed, then a lackluster victory over Fabricio Camoes, then, most recently, back-to-back defeats to WEC veterans Donald Cerrone and Jamie Varner.
That leaves "The Young Assassin" with a record of 1-4 in his past five fights, a streak that, for most fighters, would be grounds for walking papers from the UFC.
Are the recent misfortunes of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) season 2 cast member enough to get him released from the UFC? The company's president is undecided.
"You're asking me where he is, I don't know, as far as being cut. We'll talk to the boys and see," UFC President Dana White told media members about Guillard following the UFC 155 post-fight press conference on Dec. 29 in Las Vegas.
Guillard has been with the UFC since his appearance on TUF 2, going 11-8 inside the Octagon dating back to 2005. The Louisiana native has been inconsistent in the cage, but he is best known for his tremendous knockout abilities, which he has showcased on several occasions.
In his most recent defeat to Varner at UFC 155 last month, Guillard did not fight with the same all-out, in-your-face style he usually brings to the cage - which was somewhat of a letdown to White.
"If you ever notice, when Melvin Guillard comes out with that explosive, tries to go after you and knock you out [mentality], he wins more fights than he loses," White said. "When he has that sit back and wait kind of style, he's just not as effective as he is when he lets it all go."
The one thing that may be Guillard's saving grace for at least a few more fights is the fact he has a reputation of being one of the most exciting fighters in the history of the UFC lightweight division, a fact proven by his four fight-night bonuses.
White has said time and time again that if his fighters come out and give it their all every time, they will have job security. Guillard, for the most part, is one of the those guys, and White respects his style of fighting opposed to other less exciting fighters the UFC president would like to release even after a win.
"I always say it, the guys who go and lay it all out on the line, those are the guys we like to have," White said in closing. "Believe me, there's a lot of guys who love to do that push against the cage [expletive] all night that I'd love to cut on a win."
Guillard may not ever be a UFC champion, but he is certainly a valuable member of the roster. Guillard can test the up-and-comers in the division and give tough fights event to the elite. Moveover, it would be in the UFC's best interest to keep "The Young Assassin" under contract and away from growing promotions such as Bellator MMA.
No news of Guillard's official release from the UFC has surfaced yet, so it's safe to assume he will be given at least one more crack.