The Ultimate Fighting Championship announced today the hiring of Mick Maynard as Vice President of Talent Relations. Maynard was President and owner of Houston-based Legacy Fighting Championship, an organization that helped launched the careers of many athletes including Holly Holm, Henry Cejudo and Sage Northcutt.

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                    (Photo Credit: txmma.com)

Maynard will work alongside Sean Shelby, a 14-year UFC employee who is being promoted to Senior Vice President of Talent Relations, in organizing UFC bouts, developing athletes on the roster, and scouting potential UFC talent. These moves come as longtime UFC executive Joe Silva is set to retire at year’s end after more than two decades with the organization. Silva is largely responsible for the UFC's talent explosion over the last decade making it a multi-billion dollar enterprise.

“Joe Silva’s contributions to the UFC over the last 20 years were huge, and he played a big role in helping make the sport as big as it is today,” UFC President Dana White said. “He left his mark on this sport and I wish him nothing but success in retirement.

Many have wondered how the UFC would look without Silva's vision and fighter talent scouting abilities. Promoting Sean Shelby was the obvious thing, however with the UFC roster now swollen to hundreds of fighters and expanded weight classes, the pressure is immense to feed the Octagon on an almost weekly basis.

Maynard, who began promoting mixed martial arts in 2006, is one of a few former promoters who have exited the small show for the big stage. 

Reed Harris, sold his World Extreme Cagefighting organization to Zuffa, LLC (parent company to the UFC) in late 2006 and is now the VP of Community Relations for the organization. Scott Coker, former owner of Strikeforce, sold to Zuffa in 2011 and Coker has since been named the CEO of Bellator MMA which is owned by Viacom.