The Ultimate Fighter season 8 winner Efrain Escudero joined an exclusive club recently, as he became the second TUF winner ever to be released from a UFC contract. Escudero was cut from his contract after losing to Charles Oliveira at UFC Fight Night: Marquardt vs. Palhares in early September. Though he did not post consecutive losses (which usually prompts a fighter’s dismissal from the UFC), the fact that Escudero did not make weight for the bout had UFC President Dana White questioning his commitment to being a fighter. Escudero spoke with MMAWeekly.com recently, where he expressed his bewilderment at his UFC release.
“It was that Monday after my fight and I came back home from my parent’s and stuff, and first of all I was disappointed in my performance in the fight,” he said. “I was kind of like sleeping, I had other things in my head instead of worrying about fighting. I’ll give it to (Charles) Oliveira, he capitalized on that little mistake and he came to fight, but I don’t know where I was at.”
The Arizona-stationed fighter explained how he received the disappointing news of his contract-release and recalled his initial reaction to hearing he was fired.
“Joe Silva was just like ‘we’re releasing you’ and at first I was like ‘whoa’, I didn’t know what to say, I was speechless,” he said. “They know what they’re doing and for me it was weird because I don’t have consecutive losses. Yes, I lost to (Evan) Dunham, but Dunham’s one of the top guys right now, and I also lost to Oliveira, which are the only two losses in my whole career.”
“Still to this day, it doesn’t make sense,” he added.
Despite his obvious disappointment at losing his spot on the roster of the largest MMA promotion in the world, Escudero said that he is staying positive and has plans on fighting in his hometown soon; the first stop on his road back to the UFC.
“I will be back in the UFC, I do not know when,” Escudero said. “I want to get back to the UFC and give Dana White what he originally hired me to do and beat up people.”