Paulo Filho, the former World Extreme Cagefighting champ, makes me sad. He was not brought over to the UFC's stable of fighters after the WEC dissolved his weight class. Filho's bizarre behavior in a loss to Chael Sonnen, his inability to make weight and decision to ship the championship belt to Sonnen all played a factor in his release from Zuffa.
His strange odyssey puts him in a sad group of athletes who have wasted their talents. The gifted running back Ricky Williams retired from the NFL rather than face a suspension for marijuana use. Maurice Clarett descended quickly from a top prospect to Grey Goose-guzzling, unemployed football player. Denny McLain, the Detroit pitcher who was the last to win 30 games, watched a career fizzle after becoming too close with organized crime figures. The list goes on and on.
Hopefully, Filho will get some help and be able to come back to mixed martial arts as he could truly make some waves. The names above haven't completely ended in sad stories. Williams is back in the league and has 437 yards this season for the Dolphins. Time away from the sport may help Filho, just as it has done for Williams.