Elias Theodorou was released from the UFC following his loss to Derek Brunson at UFC Ottawa last month. Since then, there has been speculation as to what led to the 8-3 fighter being released from the promotion. Dana White expressed that Theodorou showed no potential of being a top 5 fighter, but the consensus is that it was specifically the fighting style of Elias Theodorou that was the true impetus behind the release.
To put things into perspective, Elias Theodorou was cheered, as expected, by his fellow Canadians prior to his bout against Derek Brunson. But even his compatriots turned against him midway through the fight due to his unconventional, low-engagement fighting style.
Say what you will about his fighting style, but 8-3 does not lie, and Theodorou was ranked #15 in the promotion right before his release. And one of the men Theodorou defeated in his UFC career, Eryk Anders, can tell you firsthand that Theodorou’s style generally works. He would then go on to agree with the general consensus on why Theodorou was released, asserting that his style of fighting does not put butts in the seats:
“This is a business, man. They want guys that are gonna sell tickets,” Anders said in an interview with theScore MMA. “I’ve heard Dana White say he wants guys that are gonna be in the top five and all that, but I don’t necessarily believe that. I think he wants guys that, yeah, sure, be great there in the top 5, but there can only be five people in the top 5. The other guys and girls gotta be able to sell tickets and put butts in the seats, sell pay per views and stuff like that. And people aren’t gonna miss an appointment to watch Elias Theodorou fight.
“I think he’s a good fighter, 8-3, Ultimate Fighter winner, beat me, so it’s not a whole lotta bad I can say. But, at the same time, if I miss one of his fights, it wouldn’t be the end of the world.”
What’s your take on Eryk Anders’s perspective on Elias Theodorou’s UFC release?