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Yoel Romero no longer under contract with UFC

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Middleweight contender Yoel Romero has unexpectedly parted ways with the UFC.

MMA: UFC 248-Adesanya vs Romero Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

One of the top middleweights in the world is apparently no longer under contract with the UFC. Yoel Romero, who fought for the middleweight title in his last UFC bout, will not be stepping back into the Octagon any time soon. ESPN’s Ariel Helwani has the news:

As noted in the tweet, the release was confirmed by Romero’s manager, Malki Kawa.

Romero (13-5, 9-4 UFC) is currently on a three-fight losing streak, dropping a lackluster decision to champion Israel Adesanya in his last outing in March. Before that, he dropped decisions to Paulo Costa and Robert Whittaker. Romero has challenged for the 185-pound title twice, and was given title opportunities on two other occasions but was unable to make weight.

Romero had flirted with a move to 205 pounds before being scheduled to fight Uriah Hall at 185 in August. He pulled out of that fight for undisclosed reasons. And now he’s out of the promotion altogether.

The 43-year-old won a silver medal in wrestling in the 2000 Olympics, and is still one of the most feared fighters in the game. It is puzzling that the promotion would get out of the Romero business with three fights left on his deal, but his big price tag might have something to do with it. I’m sure Dana White will fill us in on the real reasons soon enough.