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Affliction Fighters Finding New Homes

Written by Tom Ngo
July 24th, 2009
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Gegard Mousasi vs. Renato "Babalu" Sobral

With today’s shocking announcement that Affliction Entertainment decided to scrap their “Trilogy” event, and apparently their MMA efforts altogether, the race is on to acquire some of the fights or fighters that now don’t have homes.

Logically, M-1 Global, the co-promoter for all of Affliction’s shows, including “Trilogy,” would have the inside track on landing any bout on the card that they want, or at least first right to refusal.

The two remaining crown jewel bouts on the roster is the light heavyweight matchup between Strikeforce champion Renato “Babalu” Sobral and Gegard Mousasi.

Considering they lent Babalu out to Affliction for this event, and their upcoming “Strikeforce: Carano vs. Cyborg” promotion taking a significant hit this week as well, they might insist on having the services of their 205-pound title holder in order to salvage their card.

Almost as quickly as Affliction went down this week, Strikeforce was almost right there with them. Heavyweight champ Alistair Overeem was forced to pull of his his title bout against Fabricio Werdum when it was revealed that he was having complications with his injured hand.

Today, it was confirmed that Joe Riggs was going to have to pull out of his welterweight title fight against Nick Diaz on that same August 15th card after suffering a bad reaction to an as of yet undisclosed drug.

It is being rumored that Jay Heiron, another Affliction fallout, has thrown his name in the hat to sub in for Riggs and take on Diaz for the open title.

“We would like to fight Nick Diaz,” Heiron’s coach Shawn Tompkins told Sherdog.com. “It would be great timing. Jay’s medicals are passed, he’s ready to go. He’s trained for a fight. Why not put him and Nick Diaz in together? I think he’s the guy that’s going to beat Diaz. It might as well be for the title.”

“M-1: Breakthrough” currently has Don Frye and “King Mo” Lawal headlining their first ever major event in the States. Because they are working on a limited budget, it is highly unlikely they will be able to land the other big scrap, the light heavyweight battle between Vitor Belfort and Jorge Santiago.

Most likely, M-1 will make a run at more cost effective fighters such as Paul Buentello, Takanori Gomi, Ben Rothwell and Hieron if he doesn’t land the gig against Diaz.

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