No, it’s not going to be Sergei Kharitonov who will step in the cage on July 26 to face Antonio Silva. Considering who will be, however, makes that a big fat disappointment. Instead of the PRIDE veteran, who has some solid wins under his belt, we get a UFC veteran who’s lost to everyone with a recognizable name—Justin Eilers.
According to Five Oz., Eilers and Silva have verbally agreed to the fight and the deal is close to being finalized.
EliteXC Vice President Jared Shaw revealed the news when contacted by FiveOuncesOfPain.com earlier this afternoon.
Five Ounces of Pain later contacted Eilers’ manager, Monte Cox, who indicated that it is their intention to FAX a signed contract to EliteXC officials later today.
Shaw also said that it’s still up in the air on whether or not the fight will be for the title.
“It’s still in discussion with EliteXC officials if we’re going to make it a title fight or not. But we feel if we did, Justin is a credible and worthy opponent, and rival challenge for Junior Silva.”
Currently, EliteXC has not set a total number of fights that will happen for either the Showtime or CBS portions of the broadcast. The Showtime card will weigh heavily on whether the Antonio Silva bout is for a title because of the length of the fight moving from three to five rounds.
Eilers may have won his last 10 of 11 fights, but it certainly wasn’t against anyone that justifies giving him a title shot on a national stage. I understand that Eilers wasn’t EliteXC’s first choice and maybe he’s the best they could do on short notice, and that’s fine if they just want to put him against Silva in a normal fight, but to make it a fight for any kind of title is just short of absurd.
The latest EliteXC “Unfinished Business” fight card and event info can be found in our fight cards section.