This is the third Cut List post in the last six days. I know that I said at the start that it'd be much better to break them up, but now I'm reconsidering that idea. Writing about people potentially losing their jobs on Labor Day is just weird (yes, it's Labor Day in Canada too). Nonetheless, we have one more card to cover before we get a much-needed break, and that's UFC Fight Night 28.
The card is rather strange, as the top of the card features a litany of ranked talent, but it falls off quickly into guys either making their debuts or stepping into the octagon for the second time. I know it's mostly due to injuries, but I can't remember a non-TUF Finale card that featured six fighters making their debuts. Anyway, let's get on with it.
Likely to be cut with a loss
Joao Zeferino - He came into the UFC as a late replacement outside his natural weight class and put up a good fight with Natal before losing. He'll now get a full camp and a fight at welterweight. Going 0-2 isn't a good look though, even in two different divisions.
Keith Wisniewski - I'm not sure why he's still around right now to be honest. He's 0-2 on this run and he's a tough guy, but he's never struck me as UFC-caliber. A third loss has to mean the door for him.
Yuri Villefort - Villefort is a good prospect, but he has lost two fights in a row (one in Strikeforce, one in the UFC) and I can't see any reason why they'd keep him if he lost to Spencer.
Sean Spencer - Like Zeferino, he came into the UFC as a late replacement against Natal at 185. He now gets a shot at 170, and has a tough opponent. A loss would mean the same thing as it means for Zeferino - unemployment.
Possibly cut with a loss
Marcos Vinicius - Vina's 1-1 in the UFC and lost his last bout to Johnny Bedford at 135. He's dropping to flyweight now, and normally I wouldn't think he'd get cut with one loss at 125. But if he gets finished, combined with getting finished by Bedford and his two losses on TUF Brazil 1 (he did win at the Finale, but still), Vina might be on the outside looking in.
Likely safe regardless of the outcome
Glover Teixeira and Ryan Bader - Teixeira could be as close as one win from a title shot, while Bader's a TUF winner and fringe top 10 guy. They're both going to be around for a while still.
Yushin Okami and Ronaldo Souza - Okami has been in the top 10 forever and everyone wants to see what Jacare can do in the UFC, especially since his first win came over an overmatched late replacement. No danger here.
Joseph Benavidez and Jussier Formiga - Joe B. is the consensus number 2 flyweight in the world and might even get a second title shot with a win here. Formiga is the former world's # 1 (pre-UFC) and is still top 6 or so. Again, nothing to see here.
Francisco Trinaldo and Piotr Hallmann - Trinaldo is a huge 155er with a 3-1 UFC record and three finishes, so a loss won't hurt him too badly here. Hallmann is a touted prospect that will get more than one look even if he's blown out of the water by the bigger man.
Rafael Natal and Tor Troeng - His fight IQ might be lacking, but Sapo has managed to put together a 4-2-1 record in the UFC over seven fights so far. They'll at least let him lose two in a row before he gets bounced. Troeng was a guy I was sort on the fence on, since they're trying to trim the TUF 17 middleweights where they can. But the guy has a nice UFC win already and a crowd-pleasing style, so I think he'll get one more shot if he loses.
Ali Bagautinov - He's a highly-touted prospect in a thin division. i highly doubt they only give him one opportunity in the octagon.
Felipe Arantes - I think he surprised a lot of people with his ferocity against Pepey, and he's 2-0-1 in his last three. Like Natal, he'd probably need to lose at least two in a row to get bounced.
Lucas Martins - After going 1-1 at lightweight, he's dropping TWO weight classes to bantamweight. His last fight was pretty exciting too, so they'll give him another shot if the drop was too much and he loses on Wednesday.
Elias Silverio, Ramiro Hernandez, Edimilson Souza and Ivan Jorge - They're all in the same boat, except for Hernandez - Jungle Fight champions being inserted as late replacements for their UFC debut. Hernandez is a Miletich product that was signed and isn't a late replacement. Regardless, I just put them all together because they're not going to get cut off of one loss.