The UFC’s featherweight division remains on the chopping block; Leonard Garcia (15-11-1 MMA, 2-7 UFC) and Bart Palaszewski (36-17 MMA, 1-3 UFC) are the latest 145-pounders to confirm the UFC has released them.
Both of the fighters today made the announcement via Twitter.
The UFC doesn’t officially confirm releases.
Garcia’s release, though, isn’t much of a surprise. Following his recent loss to Cody McKenzie at UFC 159, UFC President Dana White told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that the fighter’s prospects in the organization were “not looking good.”
“He got beat,” White said after the fight. “He even got beat standing up. Cody McKenzie beat him tonight, every way you can beat a guy.”
Garcia’s other recent losses have come to Chan Sung Jung, Nam Phan, Matt Grice and Max Holloway. However, unlike some of those recent performances, the fighter, whose UFC career was split by an eight-fight WEC stint, never really found any openings or a rhythm against McKenzie, who ultimately won via 29-28, 30-27 and 30-27 scores, though it should have been a clean sweep.
Even Garcia acknowledged he should be cut.
“For me to want to stay in the UFC right now would be the wrong choice for me because that’s five (straight losses),” he told MMAjunkie.com after the fight. “There’s no way that I could justify it to the other fighters that are back here and work hard that have been cut after one or two losses.”
Garcia, 33, who hasn’t won a fight via anything but split decision in four-and-a-half years, closes out his UFC stint with a five-fight losing skid. However, he was a six-time “Fight of the Night” winner under the Zuffa banner.
Palaszewski, meanwhile, leaves the promotion after a three-fight skid, which included decision losses to Hatsu Hioki and Diego Nunes, as well as a recent submission defeat to Cole Miller at The Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale. Palaszewski, an IFL vet, later had a seven-fight stint with the WEC, where he picked up a split-decision victory over Anthony Pettis in 2009. It was part of a 5-1 run for the 29-year-old, whose only UFC victory came via a promotional-debut knockout of Tyson Griffin in late 2011.
(Pictured: Leonard Garcia)
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