Latest from UFC: Sonnen out of Akiyama fight; and mass firings

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Chael Sonnen in photo by Josh Hedges

After pleading guilty to money laundering, Chael Sonnen ended up getting dropped from the card for UFC 128, to take place March 19 in New Jersey. His substitute against Yoshihiro Akiyama will be Nate Marquardt, who is coming off a loss to another Japanese fighter, Yushin Okami. Check out who else is on the card:

Mauricio “Shogun” Rua vs. Rashad Evans

Yoshihiro Akiyama vs. Nate Marquardt

Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic vs. Brendan Schaub

Urijah Faber vs. Eddie Wineland

Jim Miller vs. Kamal Shalorus

Ricardo Almeida vs. Mike Pyle

Kurt Pellegrino vs. Gleison Tibau

Edson Barboza vs. Anthony Njokuani

Luiz Cane vs. Karlos Vemola

After suffering his third loss in the octagon in a row, against Thiago Silva (UFC 125), Brandon Vera is out of the UFC’s plans. Vera was once seen as one of the most promising athletes in the promotion, after rattling off four-straight wins following his 2005 debut.

Another to drop from the roster is lightweight Antonio McKee, who had a great run in the IFL and notched as many as fifteen fights without losing in MMA. But McKee only had one fight in the UFC, losing a split decision to Jacob Volkmann at UFC 125.

And another who’s out is Marcus Davis. After winning fifteen fights in the organization, six straight, four “fight of the night” bonuses and making it within a hair of a title fight, Davis bid farewell to the event after losing to Jeremy Stephens at UFC 125, but he vows to continue fighting.

With the arrival of the new bevvy of WEC fighters, it is likely firings will become all the more common, especially in the lower weight divisions. The way to stay is just win, win, win.

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