Imagine waking up on Friday morning in a city that is not your home, but is your temporary location while you are on a company road trip promoting the company you work for. Also, think about how you are out there promoting and representing them by making public appearances in front of thousands and thousands of people since the company you work for is the biggest mixed martial arts promotion in the world the UFC.
You’re on the road, you’ve taken time away from your home, your family and your regular daily routine to help your company present a great image in Washington DC. simply because they asked and you’re a company guy/girl, and always have been.
You have won 2 of your last 3 fights with the only loss coming to the champion in a title fight. You’ve always represented the company in the best possible fashion as evidenced again by your road trip to Washington DC and then boom, just like that you get a message that you’ve been released.
If your name Liz Carmouche, the above scenario was your life today.
I would have to guess this former Marine feels like she may have been done a little dirty today. Not even so much about being released, but doing it while she’s out representing the company has gotta be a head-scratcher for her doesn’t it?
Carmouche 13-7 overall, and 5-5 inside the octagon isn’t just another fighter on the roster, she was part of one of the most historic moments in the history of the UFC when she faced off against Ronda Rousey at UFC 157 for the Women’s Bantamweight Title, which also happened to be the 1st female fight to ever take place inside the octagon.
She is the 1st UFC fighter male or female to ever win a fight inside the legendary Madison Square Garden which she did at UFC 205 in November 2016.
This former United States Marine was also the 1st openly gay fighter in the UFC. She put herself out there for the world to see on a grand stage and was unashamed of who she is, and never afraid to show it. Such an inspirational person for everybody to look up to, especially women.
Carmouche has fought for both the bantamweight and flyweight titles in the women’s divisions. She came up short in both bouts against a legend in Ronda Rousey, and a future legend in Valentino Shevchenko who happens to be one of the best strikers in the UFC and that means out of the men and the women.
I don’t know what goes on behind the scenes so I’m not even going to venture a guess as to why the UFC chose to release her and why they chose to do it while she was on the road promoting for them. I’m sure we will get more information over the next couple of days pertaining to this situation.
I will say that I feel for this woman. Out there putting in work, part of the building blocks that is the UFC today. Yes, I said she is a big part of the building blocks that made the UFC what it is today because it takes 2 to tango and that moment at UFC 157 might not have been as spectacular and catapulted both the female mixed martial artist and the UFC into a much bigger view from the public eye if she didn’t fight Rousey. If she is miffed at how this release took place, I completely understand.
[The following reaction from Carmouche is an excerpt from MMAJunkie]
- “I’m a little bit pained,” Carmouche told MMA Junkie. “They brought me out here and had me doing a lot of media obligations. I went to Arlington Cemetery and was part of the wreath ceremony. They brought me out as a veteran and as a fighter. Then today they had me going to the hospital and talking to different people and different wards – only to find out that I’d been released earlier. The news just finally trickled down to me.”
- “It’s a little bit insane that you would (do that),” Carmouche said. “I took time off from work to be here at my own pocket expense. It’s a little bit sad. Then, two, that it would be done that way … I’m here with the UFC and you could have actually spoken to me firsthand then hear it from my management team.
- “Especially during the holiday season. I have a four-year-old at home. My wife is at home and I’d love to be spending it with them. Especially saving up as much money to spoil them for Christmas. To take a week off from that definitely sucks and is kind of a setback. And to be done this way is definitely not a great taste.” Carmouche said she was wasn’t given a reason for her release.
- “It definitely sucks, but at the same time, I know it’s for good reason,” Carmouche said. “There are a lot more positive things in my future. There’s been all different organizations that have been contacting me for years now. And I just expressed my loyalty to the UFC and stayed with the organization.
- “So now I can actually be a free agent and see what the best opportunity is, who is going to have the best fighters, and really I’m looking forward to that aspect of it.”
I’m sure she will attract interest from ONE or BELLATOR, she is still in her fighting prime being just 35 years old and the latter is looking to add depth in their women’s feather, bantam, and flyweight divisions. I fully believe we have not seen the last of the “Girl-Rilla” Liz Carmouche.
Christopher James has been in the MMA industry for 15 years, Working as a ring announcer for promotions like the XFC, Island Fights, Combat Night and Fight Nights Global during his career. Chris’ love for the sport and the athletes that partake in it led him to writing and doing face to face interviews with the athletes he admired and respected. Chris isn’t conventional by any stretch of the imagination, he has his own style, and takes pride in not being a “cookie-cutter” member of the media. Unique and sometimes controversial takes are what he brings to the table, forcing folks to think a little differently about the world of MMA. He also has a love for music as he has been a dj for 25 years and his love for music gets brought to the MMA world when he gets his guests to sing on his weekly show Cage Side with Christopher James which can be seen Wednesday nights on FACEBOOK LIVE, and soon via podcast.