MMA on Tap has learned that Mark Miller has been forced to pull out of his scheduled bout against Jay Hieron after suffering a hand injury during a recent training session.
Miller will be replaced by Brad Blackburn. Because of the switch, the seedings have also been shifted. Blackburn will take on Delson Heleno while Hieron will now take on Pat Healy.
I was able to get in touch with Hieron and asked him for his thoughts about Miller’s withdrawl.
“It’s disappointing but there’s nothing that can be done about it really,” said Hieron. “It is what it is. Injuries are common in MMA. It’s something that you can’t prevent. This isn’t the first time this has happened for the Grand Prix either. I was supposed to fight Antonio and then that got scrapped. Now I’m fighting Pat instead of Miller. It doesn’t matter who it is. I’m ready to go for whatever.”
Sam Caplan is reporting that both Ben Rothwell and Mike Whitehead have been pulled from next month’s IFL Grand Prix because of contract problems:
The IFL made a decision to pull both Rothwell and Whitehead from their respective brackets after the promotion was unable to secure signed commitments from each fighter for the 2007 season. Rather than risk having one or both of the fighters winning a title only possibly to see them never defend it within the IFL, a decision was made to change directions.
The IFL’s policy in this regard is similar to the UFC’s of not allowing fighters with only one fight remaining on their contract to challenge for a title. The IFL felt it had secured verbal commitments in regard to 2008 from Rothwell and Whitehead’s camp. Both are managed by Monte Cox.
However, when the IFL tried to finalize the 2008 contracts for Rothwell and Whitehead they felt as though their management was being unresponsive. After a deadline passed, the team-oriented fight promotion was left with the feeling that the two might be considering offers from outside the organization.
Huge blow to the Grand Prix right there, especially since Rothwell is the company’s star.
So what happens now?
Caplan says that Bryan Vetell will serve as Rothwell’s replacement take on Antoine Jaoude. Roy Nelson will face Reese Andy in the other. As for the light heavyweights, Andre Gusmao has been forced to pull out with a foot injury so Vladimir Matyushenko will be fighting Alex Schoenauer for the title instead of having a tournament take place.
Caplan also mentioned that Jay Hieron was almost pulled from the event but agreed to a contract extension at the last minute. I find this odd because I spoke with Hieron last week and he didn’t mention anything concerning that.
News and Notes
- Tony Loiseleur of Sherdog sat down for an awesome three-page interview with PRIDE Lightweight Champion Takanori Gomi. Be sure to check it out.
- Sherdog is also reporting that Hector Lombard may still have a chance to fight at UFC 78 after all:
On Monday, the fighter’s American representatives told Sherdog.com that in spite of Lombard’s difficulties they remain hopeful he will be granted a P1 visa, which is available to athletes and entertainers coming to the U.S. to participate in internationally recognized events for a U.S. employer.
- The Fight Network is reporting that the IFL has signed Jay Hieron to a contract extension:
Welterweight contender Jay Hieron confirmed today he has re-signed with the International Fight League through the completion of its 2008 campaign. A product of Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas, Hieron holds four victories in six fights with the promotion.
- Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer fame has left FOX Sports for Yahoo! Sports...
- I hate to force publicity out there but a few members of the gym I train out of as well as other members of Team Balance will be competing in grappling matches at the 40th Anniversary of Sports at the Spectrum. The event will be held on October 19th at 7:00 PM at the Wachovia Spectrum of course. Former UFC Heavyweight Champion Andrei Arlovski is set to be a guest at the event.
MMA News has more on the event...
- Adam Morgan looks back on Chris Horodecki’s fall through the ropes during his fight with Bart Palaszewski earlier this year.
Jay Hieron works some ground and pound on San Jose Razorclaws' welterweight Donnie Liles at the IFL's event in Los Angeles in March 2007. Provided by IFL. Getty Images.
After close to three years of bouncing from promotion to promotion, Jay Hieron has finally found a home in the IFL, where he has fought six times thus far as a member of the Los Angeles Anacondas.
In those six fights, Hieron quickly established himself as one of the top welterweights in the league. His success earned him a bid in the IFL’s inaugural Grand Prix, pitting four fighters from each weight class against each other in an elimination style tournament, in hopes of crowning a champion.
Hieron sees the Grand Prix as a chance to not only showcase his skills but to prove that he is indeed the best fighter at 170 lbs the IFL has to offer. With the help of those at Xtreme Couture and his former coach Shawn Tompkins, Hieron is set to make the most of the opportunity.
Here are the official weigh-in results for IFL: Seattle.
Tokyo Sabres vs. Portland Wolfpack
Orvil Palmer (233.6) vs. Devin Cole (247.5)
Kazuhiro Hamanaka (185) vs. Matt Horwich (185)
Vladimir Matyushenko (204) vs. Aaron Stark (205)
Antonio McKee (169) vs. Mike Dolce (170)
Savant Young (155) vs. Ryan Schultz (155)
L.A. Anacondas vs. Seattle Tiger Sharks
Benji Radach (185) vs. Bristol Marunde (184)
Chris Horodecki (153) vs. Shad Lierley (153)
Jay Hieron (170) vs. Brad Blackburn (170)
Alex Schoenauer (204) vs. Allan Goes (205)
Krzysztof Soszynski (230) vs. Reese Andy (208)
IFL: Seattle Weigh-In
IFL: IFL Seattle Preview, Part 1
IFL: IFL Seattle Preview, Part 2
Sherdog: Anacondas Canadian Contingent Making Waves
Sherdog: Season Hangs in the Balance for Portland, Seattle
MMAWeekly: Can Lierley Pull Off Big Upset in IFL?
The Fight Network: Building a Foundation
Here are the full results from IFL: Los Angeles.
- Conor Heun def. Clint Coronel - Decision (Split)
- Zach George def. Danny Suarez - Decision (Unanimous)
- Alex Schoenauer def. Brian Ebersole - Decision (Split)
- Benji Radach def. Brian Foster - Submission (Guillotine Choke)
- Chris Horodecki def. Josh Odom - Decision (Unanimous)
- Jay Hieron def. Donnie Liles - Submission (Guillotine Choke)
- Krzysztof Soszynski def. Dan Christison - Decision (Unanimous)
- Savant Young def. Adam Lynn - KO (Punch)
- Antonio McKee def. Rodrigo Ruas - Decision (Unanimous)
- Jeremy Williams def. Kazuhiro Hamanaka - TKO (Choke)
- Vladimir Matyushenko def. Justin Levens - TKO (Strikes)
- Antoine Jaoude def. Wayne Cole - KO (Punch)
- Bas Rutten announced he would be stepping down as the coach of the Anacondas to become the “Face of the IFL”. With the announcement, Sean Tompkins was named the new coach of the IFL’s Anacondas. Tompkins’ was successful in his head coaching debut as the Anacondas went 5-0.