You you've noticed cutting a top 10 fighter like Jon Fitch has started a bit of a shit storm in the MMA community. I agree with the MMA community at large that it was at best a very questional cut, but this is not going to be some long rant on why I find it upsetting. Instead, below is a proposed solution I think would be fair to all involved.
I understand from your comments you think Jon's recent "slide" points to him being on the tail end of his career and you think the slide will continue out of the top 10. The good news is you don't need to prognosticate about this! You actually run a fight promotion and with that you have the ability to verify that inside the cage instead of having to guess about it. I say let the action in the cate decide if his slide out of the top 10 continues or not. That does seem to be teh most basic premise of the UFC after all.
Now for the opponent. Having Jon fight some lower ranked opponent obviously won't prove enough to you. Jon beating a top guy on his way to a title shot also would be an issue for the UFC plans. So the opponent shoudl be Nick Diaz if he loses to GSP (if he wins then not sure who would make sense). Nick Diaz makes perfect sense for this fight. First, this is a great fight I've wanted forever. While thier styles are different on the surface (more striker vs grappler), the underlying aspects which make thier styles effective is identical, huge heart and cardio for days. This would be an epic war to prove who still belongs in the UFC (this also must be a 5 round fight).
This solution means you do what is viewed as right by your customers (giving Fitch another shot) and also allows you to accomplish your goal of freeing roster space and cutting a highly paid but under performing fighter (heck it sounds like you could pay Jon for another fight just with the wasted money on flights and tapings Nick has missed). If Nick loses, that is 3 in a row and a cut would be justified historically. If Jon loses 3 out of his last 4 I don't think you'll see any outcry about his cut either.
Dana, if Jon agrees with this deal will you? Jon, if Dana agrees with this deal will you?
Now I ask the BE community, do you like this idea? Do you think it could get support of the wider MMA community? Thanks for any feedback!