The UFC continues to trim its roster with nine releases, beginning May 2021. Aaron Brontester of TSN was the first to confirm the release of six fighters on May 7. MMA Fighting then added three others to the list after confirming with UFC officials.
Unfortunately, this will not be the end of roster cuts in the UFC as the promotion continues to shed talent that is no longer deemed useful.
The full list of released fighters is as follows:
KB Bhullar, Anthony Birchak, Yorgan De Castro, Aalon Cruz. Bartosz Fabinski, Jordan Griffin, Justine Kish, Oskar Piechota, Luke Sanders.
While some names on the list are comparatively new, fans should be familiar with veterans like Luke Sanders, Justine Kish, Anthony Birchak, Bartosz Fabinski, and Oskar Piechota, all of whom have at least six UFC appearances.
All released fighters are coming off consecutive losses in the UFC
All the fighters released by the UFC are coming off at least two consecutive losses. One of the notable names to stick out on the list is that of Luke Sanders.
The bantamweight veteran made his UFC debut in 2016 and won against Maximo Blanco via submission to improve his record to 10-0. However, Sanders could not survive against stiffer competition and has reeled in a 3-5 record over the years. Sanders was released, having come off back-to-back losses against Nate Maness and Felipe Corales.
Another veteran to be released was flyweight Justine Kish, who compiled a 3-4 record competing at 125 lbs. Both Bartosz Fabinski and Anthony Birchak were released after six fights inside the Octagon, with Fabinski going 3-3 and Birchak going 2-4.
Featherweight Jordan Griffin was also released after compiling a 1-4 record in his last five outings. Griffin burst onto the UFC scene in 2018 after an impressive submission victory over Maurice Mitchell on Dana White’s “Contender Series”.
Another 'Contender Series' veteran, Yorgan De Castro, was also cut after going on a three-fight skid. The heavyweight had his lone success with the promotion in his UFC debut against Justin Tafa.
Middleweight Oskar Piechota was released with a 2-3 record and one no-contest to his name. Piechota's release came shortly after USADA slapped him with a 22-month ban after a failed drug test.
Aalon Cruz and KB Bhullar were released after going winless in their two UFC appearances.
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