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Former UFC star Vera indifferent about planned Philippine event

Ivan Saldajeno
By Ivan Saldajeno

It seems like Brandon Vera has some sort of a rift with America's premier MMA promotion UFC.

The former UFC fighter, who is set for his debut with the Singaporean-based One FC in its Philippine event on Friday, was indifferent when asked by Dugout Philippines about the UFC's plan to hold an event in the Philippines next year.

Vera said, "Hayaan mo sila! They've been trying to get here forever."

The tone of his answer, however, seemed to point toward a possibility of him not leaving the UFC in good terms, and history may give a hint.

Vera was supposed to battle Tim Sylvia for the UFC Heavyweight title in 2007.

But a disagreement in the terms of the contract led to him being replaced by Randy Couture, who would dethrone Sylvia.

Vera then lost to Fabricio Werdum at UFC 85 the following year in a fight which became controversial when referee Dan Miragliotta, as what many including Vera thought, prematurely stopped the contest.

Vera would face Couture at UFC 105 the year after. Couture won the fight via unanimous decision, but the stats suggested otherwise. Even Couture expressed surprise that he won.

The result led to a reformat in the scoring rules.

Vera last fought in the UFC against Ben Rothwell at UFC 164 in 2013, losing to Rothwell.

It took almost a year after the Rothwell fight before the UFC decided to release Vera, giving him the green light to join One FC.

Vera will face Igor Subora in what would be his first ever fight in front of his home country crowd at the Mall of Asia Arena.

Currently, two MMA promotions have been regularly scheduling events here in the country, the One FC and the Guam-based PXC.

Another American MMA promotion, the King of the Cage, staged a slugfest at the MOA Arena last year.