UFC officials confirmed the moves to MMA Fighting on Wednesday after both athletes completed their contracts with the promotion. While it’s possible they could be brought back, it’s not expected that the UFC will renew deals with either athlete at this time.
It’s certainly surprising news for Davis considering she’s been a stalwart in the UFC since 2013 when women’s divisions were added to the promotional roster.
The Canadian-born grappler started off her UFC career with three consecutive wins, which earned her a shot at Ronda Rousey and the 135-pound title. Unfortunately for Davis, her championship aspirations ended after just 16 seconds following a slam from Rousey followed by a series of punches that knocked her unconscious.
Davis bounced back and forth between wins and losses for the remainder of her UFC run, competing at both bantamweight and flyweight. She most recently earned a unanimous decision win over Julija Stoliarenko in February that completed her contract with the UFC.
Davis is currently MMA Fighting’s No. 15 ranked bantamweight in the world.
As for Marques, he exits the UFC after completing a four-fight deal with the promotion.
Marques picked up back-to-back wins after first signing with the UFC, but then he suffered two losses in a row to Kennedy Nzechukwu and Jailton Almeida. His last loss was the final bout on his contract and the UFC opted not to re-sign Marques to a new deal.
MMA Fighting’s Guilherme Cruz contributed to this report