(The flannel is coming back, bitches.)
Fresh off this morning’s Dream.9, which we’ll go ahead and call a success in the sense that no one died during the “ridiculously stupendous” freak show portion of the evening, Dream already has some plans for their next event, predictably titled Dream.10. The organization announced that WAMMA lightweight champion (that’s still a real thing, right?) Shinya Aoki will face Vitor “Shaolin” Ribeiro in what will be Aoki’s first actual MMA fight since his TKO loss to Hayato “Mach” Sakurai.
Also at Dream.10, Melvin Manhoef will take on mercurial former WEC middleweight champion Paulo Filho in a fight that could be an awesome clash of styles or a complete mess. I think we can all agree that Filho stands a good chance if he shows up in shape, focused, and not with one foot in the spirit world, but will get absolutely decapitated if he wigs out like he did against Chael Sonnen in his last fight. Either way, it’s a strong addition to the July 20th fight card, which also includes the semi-final and final rounds of the Dream welterweight grand prix tournament, and possibly even the return of Kazushi Sakuraba. Because hey, he’s not dead yet, and he’d prefer that the end come in the ring in front of a silent arena of Japanese fans.
In other bookings news…
- Gegard Mousasi confirmed that he will face Vitor Belfort at the upcoming Affliction III event on August 1. He also said that he simply can’t make middleweight anymore and feels he’s a natural heavyweight, leaving us to wonder what weight the fight will take place at. Belfort’s been a middleweight for a little while now and has looked much better in that division. It’s hard to figure why he might go up in weight now, unless Affliction is offering him a considerable chunk from their Scrooge McDuck-like mountain of money as compensation.
- Fedor Emelianenko and Josh Barnett are now officially confirmed for Affliction III, with the word coming straight from Affliction VP Tom Atencio himself. Okay, so that really only means that they’re confirmed to fight as long as Affliction is still financially viable enough to put on an event by then, but we’ll take it.