MMA Rising reports:
MMARising.com has confirmed that all fighters on this Friday's Shine Fights card in Newkirk, Oklahoma will face ineligibility suspensions for taking part in an unsanctioned event. The suspensions, expected to last between 60 and 90 days, are enforceable by all member states in the Association of Boxing Commissions (ABC).
As first reported yesterday, the Oklahoma State Athletic Commission will have zero involvement with the planned Shine Fights event. No commission representatives will be present and the OSAC will not handle traditional duties such as ensuring that each individual fighter is insured by the promotion and that required medical staff are on-hand. Shine Fights will model its show after an Oklahoma-based promotion known as C3 Fights, which runs unsanctioned events throughout the year. Fighters on C3 Fights events face the same ineligibility suspensions that Shine Fights competitors will.
Additionally, the OSAC will have no control over fighters receiving payment. In January, 5150 Combat held an event at the SpiritBank Event Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The promotion was unable to pay the fighters who competed on the card and, following months of delays and promises, the promoters fled the country. Fortunately, the OSAC had required 5150 to put up a $50,000 bond in the event that fighters could not be paid in a timely manner. The bond was subsequently cashed and fighters received most or all of their fight purses.
MMA Fighting has more from Joe Miller, director of the Oklahoma State Athletic Commission:
"I have some major concerns with it," Miller told MMAFighting.com. "There are probably 15 or 20 events conducted a year in Oklahoma without a commission present. My number one concern is the health and safety of the fighters. There have been events where the fighters were not paid and there was no one there to ensure that they get paid. But my major concern is the health of the fighters. I know of situations where a fighter was knocked out, knocked unconcious, and allowed to fight five days later. The problem I have with that is if a fighter is knocked out, it's mandated under our rules and the Association of Boxing Commissions rules that they take a certain amount of time off. Thirty or 45 or 60 days is normal because if a fighter is knocked out there's a possibility that he has a subdural hematoma -- bleeding on the brain -- and there's the possibility that if he gets hit again there could be serious medical problems."
"In Oklahoma we have a large number of tribal trust lands," Miller said. "The state of Oklahoma has absolutely no authority to regulate on those particular pieces of land. In boxing it's a little different because federal law mandates that boxing be regulated by a commission, but mixed martial arts has no such law."
Miller said his only recourse is not to license any fighter who participates in unsanctioned MMA fights for 60 days.
And MMA Weekly reports that Shine is possibly going to prevent Marcus Aureliio from facing Shinya Aoki at DREAM.16. They quote Shine COO Jason Chambers:
"I can confirm that we do have an exclusive deal with Marcus Aurelio. I want to be fair with our agreement; I want our fighters to be fair. Our agreements are exclusive, within that there is language that speaks to giving permission to fight in other organizations. So a fighter can fight somewhere else, as long as we give that approval," Chambers said.
"I can confirm that I have not given any approval for Marcus Aurelio to fight in Dream."
The prior lack of approval from Shine Fights doesn't totally rule out that Aurelio could still travel and fight in Japan on Sept. 25, but from the information available at this point, that's going to fall on the shoulders of Aurelio to make the decision.
"There's definitely a possibility Marcus Aurelio fights in Dream," Chambers stated. "If you see him fight Sept. 10 in our pay-per-view, those chances are greatly improved."
Anyone who thinks it's easy to promote MMA should really examine this case study and MMA fighters once again learn that they have to be very careful who they do business with. As Fight Opinion pointed out, Marcus Aurelio is in a very tough spot as both Shine and DREAM have had bad publicity recently involving claims that fighters have gone unpaid.
UPDATE: Sherdog reports:
The Virginia Professional Boxing and Wrestling Program's decision to deny Shine Fights a promoter's license last Friday was based on the promotion's inability to provide mandatory documents, including evidence of a surety bond to cover fighters' purses, said Mary Broz-Vaughan, director of communications for the Dept. of Professional and Occupational Regulation.
In Virginia, Broz-Vaughan said the regulatory body worked diligently with the Florida-based promotion up until last Thursday to approve its licensure, even allotting the promotion an extension past the 30-day deadline organizations have to hand in all necessary documentation.
Broz-Vaughan said the promotion also failed to provide evidence that it had procured a surety bond, a requirement of the state to ensure the fighters' purses, the payment of officials and the minimum gate fee tax is covered prior to the event.