Following last night's Bellator 98 event, we're rounding up a couple of Bellator news items for your edification and enlightenment.
MMA Fighting was told from a source close to the commission on Saturday night that Warren was "knocked out while sparring," and that is "100 percent the reason he was pulled from the card." This prompted the Tribe's commissioner Mike Mazzulli to pull the plug on the bout upon seeing the medical report. The source said that he only learned of the situation on Wednesday, meaning the incident happened fairly close to the fight.
Bellator's CEO and founder Bjorn Rebney wouldn't go so far as to say the reason out of respect for Warren, but did say the former featherweight champion could be cleared in a couple of weeks.
"What [Mazzulli] did was, out of respect for Joe and for how long Joe had been prepping in Albuquerque with Greg [Jackson], Mike allowed Joe not just to get bounced out because of the medical results from the initial doctor," Rebney told MMA Fighting. "He allowed Joe to get back and go to a specialist and then see if those tests would clear him at the higher, more involved level of testing. And they almost did.
"What I can tell you is, the specialist who tested him in Denver said, look, if it were my son I wouldn't approve it. But there are circumstances that would cause me to approve it if you can wait three or four weeks and we can do the tests again That'll answer any questions, and we'll be 100 percent. And [Mazzulli] said, if we're not 100 percent we're not allowed to go.
Rebney also attempted to clarify the status of Light Heavyweight champ Attila Vegh who had told the Polish media that he was not injured and that the Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal vs. Emanuel Newton rematch at Bellator 106 was booked for "business reasons," via MMA Fighting:
"What honest to God happened with Attila Vegh is, Attila came to us and said, 'I'm injured, here's the medical report," Rebney said. "And we went back to him and said, 'great, tell us when you're off the injury because we've got to do the Newton fight.' Then Attila came back to us as we started to schedule the Newton fight, which we wanted to do in July, he said I can't go in July. Because we wanted to do the finalization of the tournament in addition to the Newton fight against Vegh, but couldn't do it.
"Then we waited until mid-August, and said look, we've got to start planning the fall schedule. You've either got to say to us, 'I'm in," and give us a date in October or November. But if you're still ambiguous and can't give us a date we've got to schedule something and then you'll get to fight the winner of the interim fight. And he said, 'I understand it's a business, schedule something because I can't give you a date right now.' So we did.
"Vegh called us and said, 'I was quoted out of context,' and that he said 'I understand it's a business, people want to see that fight, so they'll do it now.' And people construed it to mean he was saying he was bypassed to step aside. I've got a seven-page addendum to his contract that says, I'm injured, here's the medical report, and I understand I'm injured."
Bellator 99 will take place this coming Friday, September 13 and will feature The Bellator debut of Featherweight Diego Nunes against Patricio Freire and Light Heavyweight Vladimir Matyushenko vs. Houston Alexander.
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