(GerardM? DREAM may be onto something awesome)
It’s seeming more and more like Ricco Rodriguez‘s inclusion on the DREAM 15 card just wasn’t meant to be.
After Twittering early this morning that he may be stepping in for fellow MMA Agents repped fighter Jake O’Brien to face Gegard Mousasi in the opening round of the DREAM four-man light heavyweight grand prix tournament, it appears that the fight has reverted back to its original match-up as Mousasi’s camp has agreed to fight O’Brien in spite of the American reportedly being 21 pounds over the required 205-pound weight limit.
According to a Sherdog report, Rodriguez says that it was Mousasi’s camp that declined the fight, preferring instead to fight O’Brien and perhaps salvage a slot in the 205-pound tournament.
O’Brien’s official weight has not been disclosed by the promotion, but Rodriguez says that the fight is on regardless of how far over the limit he clocked in at.
Mousasi’s camp did not give a reason for turning down a replacement bout with Rodriguez, who had been told he would be facing Alistair Overeem on the card, even though the Dutchman had never agreed to the bout. Although he is disappointed with not participating in the event, Rodriguez says he is satisfied with the way DREAM handled the situation.
“Like I said, they’ve been really great with me,” Rodriguez said. “[Being paid in full is] what they’ve promised me, and they’ve taken care of me. I’m content. But if I would have had an opportunity to fight either Overeem or Gegard, I would have been very happy. I’m sitting here very happy and ready to go to work. I think the opportunity will come in the future.”
In recent years, Rodriguez has fallen on hard times due to financial difficulties and substance abuse, but has reeled off five straight wins and was hoping that a high-profile fight against an opponent like Overeem or Mousasi would rejuvenate his once thriving career.