Will the UFC release Alistair Overeem?

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Alistair Overeem, the first man to ever hold major world heavyweight titles in both kickboxing and MMA, entered the UFC on a 10-fight win streak. There was a level of fan expectation around the Dutchman exceeded only by that for Brock Lesnar.

Then ‘Reem kneed Lesnar out of the sport. And he had taken the Lesnar fight over an offered immediate title fight, so he wouldn’t have to wait around. Fans were delerious.

That was 20 months ago.

Weeks before the title shot, Overeem tested positive for elevated levels of testosterone, and was suspended by the Nevada Athletic Commission.

When he finally fought, he was knocked out by Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva. And Saturday night he was defeated by Travis Browne, not via wrestling or Jiu-Jitsu, but by the simplest kick in kickboxing – a front kick.

Overeem is not cheap. His reported purse for beating Lesnar as $385,000. He officially made $285,000 for losing to Bigfoot. What happened?

UFC president Dana White offered a clear assessment at the UFN 26 post-fight press conference.

“You guys especially all believed that he was the best at one time,” said White. “He had a big following, and we bring a guy like that in and you see what happens. We bring in the best guys in the world, guys who are supposedly the best guys in the world and we find out, that’s what we do.”

When asked if Overeem would be released, White was uncharacterisitically uncertain.

“I don’t know,” said White. “We need to see. These are not the decisions I make tonight.”

What do you think UG? Will they retain Overeem? And if so, who is next?