(Gomi’s contract stipulates that he is allowed to start a post-fight melee at a time of his choosing, but he agrees to provide his own confused Asian kid.)
Earlier today MMA Weekly reported that a 165-pound catchweight bout between former Pride star Takanori Gomi and IFL/Affliction up-and-comer Brett Cooper was “in advanced negotiations” for Affliction “Trilogy.” Awesome, right? Now Ariel Helwani comes along and destroys our hopes of seeing “The Fireball Kid” on American soil again by going and talking to Affliction VP Tom Atencio, who says it ain’t happening. Damn. We barely had time to get excited, and already we’re disappointed.
So why no Gomi/Cooper match-up for an Affliction card that could really use some more name value from the lighter weight classes? The word is that Gomi wasn’t willing to go up in weight to fight Cooper, a natural 170-pounder, and that proved to be the unmovable barrier to this fight, which is a shame because Cooper has a lot of talent and could have made for an interesting match-up with the once great but now confusingly mediocre Gomi.
Atencio says that they’re still open to putting Gomi on the card against a fellow lightweight if they can manage it, so all hope is not yet lost. Just glancing at the lineup, seems like another former IFL’er, Deividas Taurosevicius, is still without an opponent. I mean, why not right?