Tuesday, June 02, 2009

UFC drops middleweight Xavier "Professor X" Foupa-Pokam after back-to-back losses

Originally posted on MMAjunkie.com

Xavier Foupa-Pokam, who signed with the UFC earlier this year and went 0-2 in a one-month span, has been released by the organization.

His agent, Ken Pavia, today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) of the fighter's release from the UFC's roster of middleweight fighters.

The French fighter, a kickboxer better known by his nickname of "Professor X," dropped to 20-11 with the two losses.

Foupa-Pokam first joined the UFC in January when he agreed to meet notable Denis Kang at UFC 97. Facing a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt was a tough test for Foupa-Pokam, who is primarily a stand-up fighter. Foupa-Pokam ultimately suffered a unanimous decision loss, but it was only the fifth time in 32 professional victories that an opponent took Kang, a former Spirit MC champion and PRIDE veteran, to a decision.

Despite the three-round fight, Foupa-Pokam agreed to fight again for the UFC just five weeks later at UFC 98. On just three weeks' notice, he replaced an injured James Irvin and suffered a 37-second TKO loss to Drew McFedries. (Foupa-Pokam initially protested the stoppage despite the significant damage he incurred during the fight.)

Pavia said he was initially going to fight to keep Foupa-Pokam in the UFC, but after speaking with UFC matchmaker Joe Silva, he realized the fighter's best option would probably be a clean break from the organization.

"I started to request to keep him under contract to the UFC and maybe take some fights outside the organization, but [Silva] reminded me that it's very restrictive with what they allow outside the UFC and that it's probably in a fighter's best interest to be released and to take fights with no restrictions," Pavia said. "The UFC is booking fights six months in advance, so he could have been on the sidelines for a long time. Additionally, even the worst fighter in the UFC is a great fighter, so he'd have a very tough fight when what he really needs is a chance to regain his confidence."

Click here to read the entire article at MMAjunkie.com

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home