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Paul Buentello not officially cut from UFC, but camp anticipates release

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Jride

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Paul Buentello (27-12 MMA, 3-3 UFC) has not received his official UFC release, but his representative is preparing for the worst.

"We've had discussions with the UFC about moving forward with Paul," Ellis Pacheco, Buentello's manager and lawyer, told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) today. "Have we received any paperwork? No."

Buentello dropped his second consecutive UFC fight when he met Cheick Kongo at UFC on Versus 1 in March.

In a one-sided affair, Kongo dominated the fight on the ground before Buentello submitted unexpectedly in the third round. His cornerman, Trevor Wittman, later confirmed the former heavyweight contender had suffered a dislocated finger in the fight's first round and was unable to continue due to the pain of the injury.

"It was very frustrating because of how well Paul had done in training camp with takedown defense and wrestling," Pacheco said. "He had lost 26 pounds for the fight."

The UFC's official Web site still lists Buentello on its heavyweight roster.

Wittman said medical personnel shot Buentello's hand with Novocaine backstage to help deal with the pain from the dislocated finger.

Afterward, Buentello said he wanted to quit fighting.

"I told him to not make any rash decisions," Wittman told MMAjunkie.com. "He was like, 'Oh, the UFC's going to cut me.' Honestly, from my perspective – and I try to keep it as real as I can because I love Paul, and I think he's a great fighter – I think he's got to have more dimensions at this high level of the game."

But Pacheco said a likely scenario for Buentello's future involves taking a few fights outside the UFC and to return at a later date.

"Do they want to drop Paul? No," Pacheco said. "But he's got two [losses], so it's possible that he might have to fight a few times outside the UFC and pick up a couple of wins and come back.

"I got a very nice email from (UFC matchmaker) Joe (Silva) saying if they have to do that, they'd very much like to have Paul back."

Retirement does not appear to be on the table, at least for now.

Buentello fought Andrei Arlovski for the UFC heavyweight title at UFC 55 and lost via knockout. Despite a subsequent win over Gilbert Aldana at UFC 57, he was released from the promotion in 2006 and fought for Strikeforce and Affliction before re-signing with the UFC in the wake of Affliction's collapse this past August. He suffered a loss to Stefan Struve in December and is now 0-2 since his return.

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Post #1   4/1/10 8:33:46PM   

BustedKnuckle

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Well I hope Paul stays in the UFC. I dont know bot anyone else!?

Post #2   4/2/10 12:29:12AM   

SaskQUATCH

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he should stay, he is good for the UFC

Post #3   4/2/10 6:13:21AM   

xdanish020

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As much as I like Paul, he doesn't deserve to fight in the UFC....the HW division is past his prime and he can't even beat the mid level HW's in the UFC right now.

I can't see him beating any names in the UFC.

Post #4   4/2/10 10:10:10AM   

Jesse_Canadian_MMA

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does not have what it takes to compete in the ufc, so farewell

Post #5   4/2/10 10:20:06AM