Yair Rodriguez Cut by UFC After Refusing Zabit Magomedsharipov Bout

Yair Rodriguez UFC
Yair Rodriguez Credit: Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com

With an anticipated fight with a rising star on the horizon, Yair Rodriguez has found himself cut from the UFC in shocking turn of events.

Despite multiple outlets (Cageside Press included) reporting that Yair Rodriguez and Zabit Magomedsharipov had been booked to meet at UFC 227 later this year, the Mexican striker was having none of it. Now, he’s apparently not just out of the fight, but out of his UFC contract as well. That’s thanks to UFC President Dana White, who came down hard on the featherweight fighter for declining both the ‘ZaBeast’ bout, and a scrap with Ricardo Lamas.

After news of the fight with the surging Zabit broke, Rodriguez responded with a tweet listing only a single hashtag: #FakeNews

That appears to have stoked the ire of White, who was quoted by the L.A. Times on Thursday as saying “The guy’s off a year, rejects a fight with Lamas and then doesn’t want to fight a guy below him in the rankings?”

“He can go somewhere else. We have no use for him,” White added per the Times.

The news is a rather incredible turn of events. Rodriguez, a dangerous, creative striker, has not fought since a loss to Frankie Edgar last year. Prior to that he had won six straight in the UFC, and was 10-2 overall. Notable wins included B.J. Penn and Andre Fili.

White confirmed to the L.A. Times that a letter confirming Yair Rodriguez’s termination had been sent to the fighter. As a free agent, he’ll likely attract interest from all the major promotions.

The UFC President then added one final comment on social media, in response to the #FakeNews comment by Rodriguez: