Gerald Harris received his walking papers from the Ultimate Fighting Championship after a three round unanimous decision loss to Maiquel Falcao at UFC 123 on November 20.
The loss was Harris’ first in the UFC. Prior to the loss, Harris was unbeaten in his three previous UFC bouts and won all by stoppage.
To say that the release came as a surprise to many mixed martial arts fans and pundits would be an understatement.
Harris was dominated in the first two rounds of his fight with Falcao. In the third round Falcao seemed to play it safe and was reluctant to engage Harris. After the bout, UFC president Dana White called the last round, “the Ultimate Staring Competition.”
Harris had no comment on his release until earlier this week when he spoke with MMAJunkie.
"I messed up," Harris said. "I had the biggest opportunity in the world, and I didn't seize the day. I didn't take advantage of the situation I was in.
"I don't feel sorry for myself in a sense of being cut. I'm more disappointed with my performance than anything. That's what hurts me the most."
“They (UFC) set the standard for fighters. They've made it clear that they're not going to accept that type of performance. I don't care who you are; they don't accept that kind of performance on the big stage.”
“I'm glad that Dana didn't say, 'You will never fight in the UFC again.' He said, 'You looked like shit and you need to go home and think about it.' They just don't have time for performances like that. It wasn't personal. It was just a business decision. I can't disagree with a business decision when there's money involved. We're paid to perform, and I did not perform on that night."
I can’t help but think that Harris is choosing his words carefully in these statements.
Prior to this loss, he was 3-0 in the UFC and on a 10 fight MMA winning streak. Yet he is apologizing to Dana White for a bad performance in one fight?
I can’t blame him for not wanting to burn bridges, but he may be taking things to the extreme in this case.