Alistair Overeem released by UFC after latest knockout loss

Zuffa LLC

The UFC has released multi-title MMA champ Alistair Overeem from contract less than one month after his latest knockout loss in the octagon.

Multiple people with knowledge of Overeem’s release confirmed the news to MMA Fighting after an initial report from TSN Sports, which added the former K-1, Strikeforce and DREAM champ’s name to a short heavyweight list that included ex-champ Junior Dos Santos. Overeem was recently removed from the UFC rankings, where he stood at No. 7, indicating a change in contract status.

Overeem’s UFC tenure, which started amid a court battle with his former management company, comes to an end after nearly a decade of fights in which he earned a 12-8 record. A breakout star and perennial heavyweight contender, Overeem several times turned back the clock despite repeated knockout losses. His most recent one, against ex-Bellator champ Alexander Volkov at UFC Vegas 18, came after a pair of wins in bouts against Walt Harris and Augusto Sakai.

A kickboxing expert and guillotine specialist, Overeem, 40, adjusted his tactics to use the full range of his skills rather than stand and slug it out with every foe. Were it not for a last-second punch, he would have taken home a decision over top-ranked heavyweight Jairzinho Rozenstruik in December 2019. All of his UFC losses came by way of TKO or KO.

In recent months, the UFC has released dozens of fighters with UFC President Dana White confirming as many as 60 fighters on the chopping block. A high-priced talent due to starting point as a high-profile acquisition and headliner, Overeem’s prospects for release increased with time and losses.

Despite his setback against Volkov, Overeem indicated afterward that he would continue to fight on after resting his body. His next move is now a question mark.

One option, Bellator MMA, appears off the table for now with president Scott Coker – his former promoter in the now-defunct Strikeforce – interested in maintaining the current roster of fighters, he told MMA Fighting.


Too old

Go to Bellator

In fight years he's like a hundred and twenty


underestimate value of older age in Bellator company and Coker’s love for old fighters with names, no matter the age, bc he has ti sign ‘stars’ since he obviously can’t make them, even if his life depends on it……..
i like Reem very much, i think he has a lot of money and doesn’t need to fight bc of money, so i wish for him to retire bc he took so much damage, especially lately and simply doesn’t evolving, in fact it seems he regressed bc he looks like ‘a shell of a fighter’ he used to be………
i like him to much to watch him literary running from his opponents, occasionally ‘lounging’ in attack without any strategy or regard for defence/opponent’s counters, and then getting his head bashed in within, mostly 2RDs, almost single every time…..hate seeing him in those situations……

"I felt the tap" - Dana White

I'm surprised & disappointed , he headlined most of his fights & had a big following.

I guess his big show money was a factor, its always about the $$$. Reality of UFC.

Just ufc...?

Just reality of every business ever. But also I think it also had to do with the fact that he looks like a super hero and most of his fights win or lose had exciting finishes. Also him knocking out Brock at brocks peak probably gained him some fans.

Wasn't even close to Brock's peak.

Brock peaked when he beat Mir.
He barely survived against Carwin and then got an easy choke on an exhausted opponent, got smashed by Cain and then came back after a lengthy layoff due to a major medical issue before he fought Overeem.

Well, the reality has a bigger factor than just money.

That loss put Overeem on a long road back to a title shot.
He himself stated that he’s on his last run.
We can all see he is no longer going to beat the people he has to beat for a title.
I think he still brings viewership and money for the UFC.
Though, the money and marketing needs to push contenders.

100% cost cutting.

Reem is still a solid gatekeeper, but his disclosed show money was steep. Guys like me who were around for his prime don’t buy PPVs nearly as often as we used to, so I imagine his drawing power doesn’t justify the expense.

100% disagree.

Reem looks like he’s about three fights away from needing to be rolled in on a wheelchair. He was a stiff, heavybag in that last fight.

Bummed to see him go, but that man is high miles Toyota pick-up status.

100% disagree with your disagreement

Admittedly he didn’t look good in the last fight, but Reem has looked pretty good lately overall. His championship days are bygone, but I’d still argue he could beat almost any heavyweight in the top 6 or so. This is def cost cutting. Reem is expensive and is no longer a headliner, so it’s either take a major pay cut or take your walking papers.

I think I remember one of his last disclosed paydays being $350,000 or better.

He probably had some pretty good add-on incentives as well given his name value and drawing power when he first came over. I just don’t see him drawing the PPV buys or adding ad revenue value to offset that anymore. I imagine he has better drawing power in Asia with his history fighting there. I hope he gets a few more in so he can retire on his own terms.

I disagree with your disagreement over that disagreement

All the same, you’re right, he should go back to Asia and ride out the rest of his career there. The guy’s a legend, steroids or not.

I think it was closer to 800k actually

So it’s not surprising that they cut him given that the Volkov fight was his last chance to get another titleshot.


That’s steep for a gatekeeper; even with a resume like Reem’s. Especially when the company is in cost-cutting mode.

Yep Reem got a very good ufc contract when he joined the company

At the time he was the Strikeforce and K-1 champion plus with Fedor on the decline he was considered the best heavyweight on the planet by many. Now it seems the ufc don’t think he is worth as much anymore.

I still consider it an anomaly he didn't hold the UFC title at some point.

HW was just loaded with killers during those years and his chin was always suspect, but he was unequivocally one of the best heavyweights in the world at that time. He’s definitely in the elite tier of the all time greats list.

It's just bad timing in my opinion

Had he joined the ufc when Couture or Brock were champion he would’ve got the title. He is just unlucky that he joined when he was already on the decline and that he popped for high testosterone which cost him his titleshot against Junior Do Santos, a fight that was a good match up for him.

Yeah, I remember him getting 800k as a flat fee at one point.

No win bonus, just 800k guaranteed, win or lose.

"Reem looks like he’s about three fights away from needing to be rolled in on a wheelchair. He was a stiff, heavybag in that last fight."

Not only in his last fight. Overeem has been steadily declining the last 3-4 years. Too many punches to the dome.

He's definitely been declining.

I think his fighting style the past few years has reflected his understanding of that, though. He’s been more careful and methodical in his attacks and very risk-averse.

That's true, his fighting style reflects his markedly decreased reflexes and lack of creativity. But he's still getting KOd fairly regularly.

Times are changing.

One of the greatest combat athletes ever to have walked the face of the earth. Big Al Reem.

His debut into the UFC was one of the most electrifying and awesome I have ever seen.
But I also followed his crazy career; the highs & lows for many years…….He was an ace.
It speaks volumes to his mental toughness, that Big Al managed to pick himself up and dust himself off so many times.

When at his best, he was a masterclass of martial magnificence to watch & one of my all time faves for sure.
A class act outside the cage, who was always really nice to the fans,
I sincerely hope he enjoys health and happiness for himself and his loved ones in the future.

All the best The Demolition Man!
Ps: watch this to make you smile!

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