The last time we saw Liz Carmouche in a UFC fight, it was back in August.
That night, in the headlining contest of UFC on ESPN+ 14 in Montevideo, Uruguay, Carmouche fought the promotion’s Women’s Flyweight titleholder, Valentina Shevchenko.
Shevchenko and Carmouche fought to a judges’ decision in the Aug. 10 main event, with Carmouche dropping a unanimous decision (50-45 on all three judges’ scorecards).
Valentina Shevchenko retained the belt that evening.
Less than four months later, last Friday, Liz Carmouche, who made history almost seven years ago by becoming the first women’s fighter in UFC promotional history to compete while openly lesbian, was released by the MMA promotion.
The UFC also released Renan Barao (34-9, one no-contest overall, 9-8 in the UFC) the same day, this on the heels of the latter’s five-fight losing streak.
Carmouche now enters free agency with a 13-7 overall professional record and a 7-5 record during her 12-fight stint in the UFC.
The move made by the UFC at the end of last week has me a little bit perplexed.
Yes, I understand that the sport of mixed martial arts is, like any other sport or even sports entertainment, for that matter, a business, first and foremost.
Yes, I understand that there are times where, due to the business side of MMA being what it occasionally is, decisions like this have to be made.
As is the case with any business, an employee, regardless of what they do or who they work for, can be let go from the company at any time—and often without any advance warning.
Most importantly, yes, I understand that the decision to cut Liz Carmouche was strictly a business move, nothing more, nothing less.
In my opinion, the move made by the UFC to sever its ties with Liz Carmouche in the aftermath of a failed bid at a UFC championship is a questionable one,
We’re talking about a fighter who, throughout her professional combat sports career, has never had a losing streak of longer than two fights and most often would win a fight after losing in her previous appearance.
Wherever Carmouche happens to end up, I think she’ll succeed.
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