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Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou released by the UFC

Light heavyweight competitor Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou can be added to the list of fighters recently released by the Ultimate Fighting Championship. first became aware of Sokoudjou having been dropped from the UFC roster last week but could not find a second source for verification. However, published reports have surfaced on the Internet today confirming his release.

Sokoudjou’s release comes as the culmination of a disappointing stint in the UFC that began with high hopes. An accomplished Judoka hailing from Cameroon, Sokoudjou became an overnight success while competing for the PRIDE Fighting Championships.

Entering the promotion with a 2-1 record, many considered Sokoudjou a significant underdog during an encounter at PRIDE 33 in February of 2007 in which he was matched up against Antonio Rogerio Nogueira. Despite the long odds, Sokoudjou managed to upset the native Brazilian with a knockout just 23 seconds into the bout.

Sokoudjou returned a couple of months later at PRIDE 34 in April of the same year and was matched up against another renowned Brazilian light heavyweight in Ricardo Arona. Despite his win over Nogueira, Sokoudjou was still pegged as the underdog. However, lightning struck twice with Sokoudjou knocking out Arona at 1:59 into the first round.

After becoming a free agent following Zuffa’s acquisition of PRIDE, Sokoudjou negotiated with several promotions before inking a deal with the UFC late last year. After signing with the organization, he was immediately thrown into the fire last December at UFC 79 with another talented Brazilian light heavyweight. This time, Sokoudjou would not be nearly as successful as he submitted to an arm triangle at the hands of the undefeated Lyoto Machida at 4:20 of round 2.

Sokoudjou rebounded at UFC 84 with a first round TKO over Kazuhiro Nakamura after Nakamura was unable to continue into the second round because of a leg injury. However, Sokoudjou’s winning ways would be short lived after being TKO’d a 4:15 of round 2 against Luis Cane at UFC 89 last month.

  • mburtoni says:

    I didn’t see this one coming. only 2 losses in the ufc, and they weren’t even in a row. if changed his gameplan a little bit and didn’t always throw everything he had into every strike, he might not gas by the 2nd round and get tko’d. oh well.

  • Robert says:

    This is a horrible release.Why keep James Irvin,Matt Hamil,Houston Alexander ,Brandon Vera and countless others at light heavyweight and get rid of him.Ridiculous.

  • steve says:

    not surprised at this one.

    they werent lying about cutting down the roster.

  • steve says:

    also, Robert besides Houston Alexander (who showed great potential as he defeated to top-tier fighters in his first 2 fights) have positve records in the UFC.

  • brett says:

    he was a fighter who had ALOT of hype behind him and he couldnt back it. i honestly seeing brandon vera being the next one to get cut.

    but i (like many) am really sad to see sokou go

  • Itshisownfault says:

    Robert, because, and this is just my guess – they don’t make as much as Soko. I would imagine the UFC tried to renegotiate his contract like they did with Fabrico Werdum – when Soko said I’m not negotiating to 10k per fight 😉 they cut him.

    Soko was a big disappointment in that he had a lot of time to improve on his weaknesses and didn’t appear to. I thought he was going to be a great addition to the UFC, however he has been lackluster and very raw. I still think the talent is there, but you don’t keep paying someone top dollar when they are performing like someone that may realize their potential “one day”.

    The one fight he did win and a given – they only brought Nak in for fodder (yes, he’d kick my arse I know).

  • Jason says:

    itshisownfault is probably 100% right.

    and steve, Alessio Sakara has never been, and will never be, a top tier fighter. He is famous for getting KO’d in spectacular fashion. I dont know who the hell you are trying to fool with this “great potential” talk, I think that disappeared with Houston’s 3rd straight loss against Eric Shafer of all people. Houston is approaching his late 30’s and is 12 years older then Sok, obviously potential has nothing to do with it, its about marketabillity.

  • hambone says:

    He is getting paid too much for his low drawing power. That is it. If he goes elsewhere and gets some big wins he will be back……….and at a lower price than he is making now.

  • Austin says:

    He can’t fight like he trains.

  • paddiosf says:

    I dont get it, but I do in a financial sense, remember a year or so ago he was one of the last top former Pride fighters who signed with the UFC and held out on signing so he was a high paid fighter who I like and has talent but never did anything but beat another Pride fighter who also was released he’ll go over to Dream where I know he loves Japan..Who’s Next Shogun if he losses 2 in a Row???

  • greg says:

    this sux..was waitin for him to blow up one day

  • Binners says:

    I’m gonna be really nervous watching Shogun’s next fight he really needs a win.

    As for Soku he’s been a huge dissapointment, I’m sure the UFC will have him back if he gets some good wins elsewhere but it makes no sense to keep him the way he’s performing, someone like Jardine earns a fraction of what Soku earns. If Soku deserves to be in UFC he’ll be back, I’m not sure he’s good enough, he seems more interested in money than fighting IMO.

  • Johnnyrev says:

    Wow I could think of like 4 guys I would rather see go than him …. but the loss to Cain killed him … I think that Cain could have withstood the loss without being cut but apparently Soku cant !

  • truth says:

    Soku doesn’t like to get hit, once he does the fight seems to go out of him.

  • Brandon says:

    Makes sense to me, he under performed in all of his fights and it seems like his knee/leg must really be messed up. Plus he’s making very solid coin, 50 000+ for his fights, so it’s cheaper for them to just axe him and keep a Houston Alexander who makes 1/3 of that.

    It’s probably a good idea for Soko to go back to Japan and maybe fight some cans and get himself some experience before stepping up to fighting the big boys…

    My guess his first fight though will be against King Mo..

  • Robert says:

    OK Brandon so You’re fine with letting go of Sokoudjou and keeping guys like Houston Alexander whose lost 3 in a row the last of which was Eric Shafer,because he makes less money? Do you people know how fuckin stupid and hypocritical you guys who post on these forums are? One minute people say you have to be one of the best fighters if your in the UFC ,but I guess that only applies to their pay rate, because if anyone thinks that guys like Mike Patt,Matt Hamil,Tomasz Drwal,James Irvin,Houston Alexander,Eric Shafer,Stephen Bonnar,and I could go on are better than Sokoudjou then your fuckin stupid.The UFC wasn’t going to go belly up by paying Sokoudjou but could have given people a better match up in the future than Ivan Serati and Tomasz Drwal at UFC 93.People who agree with this decision are hopeless fans who think Dana White is a cool bastard and have no criticism for one move Zuffa makes.Fans like that are a fuckin joke.

  • steve says:

    well Robert first of all this isn’t a forum, lol. second of all you’re the only stupid one i see here because you can’t control your temper and all you do is whine. i always see you making thoughtless comments, insulting people, and not understanding statistics and logical business moves. if i were Sam Caplan i would ban you from this site, but i suppose he doesn’t even waste his time reading your ignorant and pathetic posts.

  • Robert says:

    ok so you don’t agree with someone’s comments so you ban them.Apparently you don’t agree with the first amendment steve, by the way there is more than 1 Robert posting comments here.I guess you’re one of the fans I’m talking about.Do you have a poster of Dana White on your bedroom wall,or is it right on the front door.

  • screwface says:

    i too am very saddened by this news, had very high hopes for sok. but he def didnt live up to his hype in the ufc so far. i do think the cut came to soon but live and learn, maybe he gets his game back to where it needs to be and ufc takes him back, i cant fault the ufc for its decision tho, for those who never seen his performance in pride, prolly were very unimpressed with him so far. when he fought in pride he let it all go with no fear, but in ufc he fought way to cautious and telegraphed his strikes. cmon sok u still have fans, take it to the next level and come back stronger. heres to hoping ull be back in ufc 1 day :)

  • steve says:

    actually Robert i have posters of Dana on both my front door and my bedroom wall.

  • Cathedron says:

    Cane didn’t knock him out, Sokoudjou just passed out from exhaustion. :)
    He has the typical problem of so many young, talented fighters. He blows his wad in the first few minutes going for a quick win. Once you’re tired, it doesn’t matter what your skills are. His aggressive recklessness gave him some quick wins, but won’t work now that everyone knows what to expect from him. He better take this as a wake-up call and learn to pace himself. There’s a reason the UFC doesn’t make a habit of signing fighters with less than 10 pro fights on their resume. I think they only signed him so another promotion didn’t snag him and turn him into a can bashing star.

  • Cathedron says:

    While we’re at it, why do so many of you act like it’s the end of a fighter’s career when he gets cut from the UFC? Even Dana White has said that some fighters just need to go join a smaller promotion and get some more experience or wins before coming back into the UFC. Sokoudjou obviously needs some experience to get his game worked out. I have no doubt he’ll be back. And like it or not, he’s clearly getting overpaid. For what he gets paid to give a sloppy performance, we could see several up and coming fighters get paid to put on a good show.

  • KTru says:

    where are my posts?

  • dbow1090 says:

    Not surprised at all.

  • Javier says:

    I’m very disappointed by the news. I’ve seen this guy train in person and I’ll tell you he is an animal!!!,, I’ve never seen anybody kick so hard. He’s knocking big dudes off the feet. I agree he has a cardio issue but once he gets through that problem he will be unstoppable. Mark my words this guy will be champion one day. If I were his Managers at Quest I’d try to put him up against Babalu at Affliction 2. That’ll be a good fight for him. It’ll definitely put him back on the map. If he loses then I don’t know what’ll be next for him.


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