Remember that hilariously awesome press conference where boxer Ricardo Mayorga karate chopped Din Thomas? Yeah, that fight is going down this weekend at Shine Fights “Worlds Collide.” Well, it’s supposed to anyhow if Mayorga’s boxing promoter, the infamous Don King, doesn’t stop it first. King claims his exclusive contract with Mayorga covers mixed martial arts in addition to boxing, and is seeking an injunction from a Florida judge to stop Mayorga from getting in the ring against Thomas.
“This fight will cause me irreparable harm if it goes forward,” King said. “Mayorga ain’t prepared to fight in MMA. This ain’t like boxing; it’s like a no-holds-barred fight. He could get hit with elbows and knees and he could get kicked. He’s not prepared for that punishment. I know he’s not even training.
“You can take this kind of punishment if you’re conditioned for it, but Mayorga isn’t conditioned for it. This fight could ruin him and he’s still a promotable guy. I have to sue to protect my investment and the sanctity of my legally binding contract.”
“Mayorga is a crazy guy. He’s liable to stick out his chin to show how tough he is – the Joe Palooka syndrome. I’m concerned that the man is going to get hurt, with the kicks and elbows and knees, slamming his head. He’s not training. He was drunk and he called Dana [Jameson, a Don King Productions official] two days ago. This can’t be allowed to happen.”
Shine Fights CEO Devin Price says King is merely pulling his usual “trickerations” to sabotage their event.
“I have faith in the American justice system, and I believe justice will prevail. When one operates within the rules and regulations, one has nothing to worry about. As far as King goes, it is just his usual smoke and mirrors. He shoots his mouth off about an injunction to try and sway the media’s perception, and then waits until the last minute to file in hopes of affecting the success of the promotion. I know the difference between MMA and boxing, and so does Don King. The members of the media, and both MMA and boxing fans, can clearly see that Don King is up to his ‘trickerations.’ ”
As ridiculous as it sounds, the judge’s ruling may come down to how he or she interprets the word “bout.” King’s attorney, Alejandro Brito, contends their contract with Mayorga extends to “any bout.” Specifically, the contract states Mayorga “shall not participate in any bouts other than the Bouts promoted or co-promoted by [Don King Productions]…” Tomorrow, at 1:30PM ET a Broward county judge will decide whether or not the Mayorga vs. Thomas “bout” will move forward as planned.
Even if Shine Fights wins the battle against King though, they’ll still have another major promoter to contend with on Saturday night. Their pay-per-view event is going head-to-head with Strikeforce “Heavy Artillery” on Showtime, though west coasters could conceivably watch both events back-to-back since “Worlds Collide” airs live at 6PM PT while Strikeforce is tape-delayed until 10PM PT. Both offer intriguing match-ups, but only one of them is free (sort of) and Shine isn’t on the attractive end of the value proposition. Needless to say, they’ll be battling Strikeforce for the attention of MMA fans whose pockets are already light from all the recent UFC and WEC pay-per-views. In other words, Don King isn’t their only problem.