WSOF Executive Ali Abdel-Aziz Warns Fighters To Respect the Promotion
Posted by Joseph Lee on 04.30.2014
He's tired of fight cards getting ruined...
MMA Fighting reports that World Series of Fighting executive vice-president Ali Abdel-Aziz is upset after having to cancel a welterweight title fight between Rouismar Palhares (who left for personal reasons) and Jon Fitch for July 5. The new main event for WSOF 11 is Justin Gaehtje vs Nick Newll for the lightweight title. Abdel-Aziz is now trying to book Fitch vs Jake Shields for the co-main event. The card (on the same day as UFC 175), also features Melvin Guillard and JZ Cavalcante in separate fights. A venue has not been selected.
He said: "We're getting screwed. I'm trying to put on a fight card and be nice to fighters, and now they don't want to fight each other. I have to put WSOF first and everyone else second. No more Mr. Nice Guy."
He said he's tired of fighters turning down fights after previously agreeing to them He's also tired of fighters asking for releases so they can go to the UFC of other promotions. Last week, WSOF released Andrei Arlovski so he could sign with the UFC. Before that Josh Burkman and Gerald Harris (who is retired from MMA) complained about their status with the company. He said there were other examples he didn't want to talk about.
He added: "I'm getting sick of this. If a fighter is not going to respect the promotion, he is going to be shelved for a long time. I will not release anyone to another promotion. Fighters must honor their contracts."
WSOF 10, the next event, happens on June 21. It features Dave Branch vs. Jesse Taylor for the WSOF middleweight title and Georgi Karakhanyan vs. Rick Glenn for the featherweight title.