World Victory Road announced that suspended heavyweight Antonio Silva will be taking on Yoshihiro Nakao at their Sengoku 7 event on January 4th at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan. Silva, the reigning EliteXC heavyweight champion, was suspended by the California State Athletic Commission after his win over Justin Eilers at EliteXC’s “Unfinished Business.”
Silva appealed the suspension, however it was ultimately upheld by the Commission, and he was suspended for one year, retroactive to his bout on July 26th.
Most Japanese-based MMA organizations don’t normally recognize suspensions issued to fighters in the United States, however it is possible that Silva could face repercussions when he decides to reapply for a license.
Silva’s manager, Alex Davis, told Sherdog.com that the heavyweight had no choice but to fight in Japan at this point.
“Antonio has decided to fight, he really has no option,” Davis stated. “He’s innocent, he’s tried to prove it and it fell on unwilling ears, and he has financial commitments that to not meet would have serious consequences for him. In light of these, he has decided to continue his career in Japan until when and if his situation with the CSAC is resolved.”
Here are the fighters Rumored to be competing on the January 4th event:Nick Diaz vs. TBD
Roger Gracie vs. TBD
Paul Daley vs. TBD
Hidehiko Yoshida vs. Sanae Kikuta
Yoshihiro Nakao vs. Antonio Silva
Jorge Santiago vs. Kazuo Misaki
Satoru Kitaoka vs. Takanori Gomi (Open WVR Lightweight Title)