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Tag: fight fixing

FSBC Closes ‘Sham’ Investigation Against EliteXC

Tank Abbott Kimbo Slice MMA EliteXC
(“Is it cool if we just throw wild haymakers at each other?”)

The Florida State Boxing Commission announced yesterday that its 13-day investigation of EliteXC’s alleged fight-fixing discovered no wrongdoing, and the case is now closed. As MMA Weekly reports:

The initial investigation was to determine whether commission rule 548.058, addressing “Sham or Collusive Contests,” was violated.

[FSBC Executive Director Thomas] Molloy interviewed Petruzelli, who said only that EliteXC officials told him to “just do your best.” Petruzelli further stated that the comments he made on a Florida talk radio show implying a fixed fight were “misconstrued” by listeners.

Mr. Molloy subsequently reviewed Petruzelli’s bout agreement and found no evidence of any additional bonuses other than a “win” bonus of $15,000.

Molloy also spoke with EliteXC Head of Fight Operations Jeremy Lappen, members of the Nevada and California State Athletic Commissions, and David “Tank” Abbott about possible wrongdoing in the past. According to Sherdog, Molloy asked if Abbott had been asked to fight in a particular manner, to which he replied, “No, nothing was said.” Of course with Tank, it didn’t need to be. But it seems that since EliteXC isn’t even a functioning entity anymore, the FSBC is content to take Petruzelli and Lappen at their words and move on without doing any real digging.

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EliteXC Under Investigation by Florida Dept. of Business and Professional Regulation

Kimbo Slice Tank Abbott Gary Shaw MMA EliteXC
(If Tank was allowed to use his fearsome jiu-jitsu, it would have been a totally different story. Photo courtesy of MMAWeekly.)

When it was first announced that the Florida State Boxing Commission would not be investigating EliteXC’s alleged fight-fixing attempt, it seemed like the scandal would quietly be swept under the rug. But the public/media outcry has become too loud to ignore, and ESPN.com is reporting that the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation — which oversees the FSBC — will open a preliminary investigation into the legality of Seth Petruzelli’s “knockout bonus”:

“While the Department of Business and Professional Regulation doesn’t have any reason to believe there was a problem with the Slice-Petruzelli fight, given the interest in it, the Department has begun a preliminary investigation to thoroughly review the circumstances of the fight,” said Jennifer Meale, Communications Director for the DBPR.

Responding to this new development, EliteXC Head of Operations Jeremy Lappen continued to deny that the promotion acted inappropriately in any way:

“We offered Seth Petruzelli a knockout bonus, a submission bonus and “fight of the night” bonus. If we were trying to influence the fight, why would we do that?”

Oh, so now Seth was offered a submission bonus too? This is the first we’ve heard about that one, and of course, it directly contradicts what Petruzelli originally said. (“They didn’t want me to take him down.”) Former EliteXC boss Gary Shaw isn’t helping their case either. Speaking to the L.A. Times, $kala’s dad said…

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