More bad news for Bellator. Paulo Filho is out of his “super fight” against Bellator middleweight champ Hector Lombard next Thursday at Bellator 18 in Monroe, Louisiana. Filho says he will be unable to secure a visa in time to make the trip.
“It seems the event took too long in sending out the letter I needed to present at the consulate and I’m not sure but it could be there was some kind of failure on the part of my managers. So, I won’t get my visa in time. I’m really upset because I’ve been training a lot. I did everything just right; I don’t know what to say,” he says.
“It got me down, but I’m not going to stop training. Something good will turn up,” he says in finishing.
This marks the third time Filho has withdrawn from a fight in the past year. He was also scheduled to compete for DREAM and Bitetti Combat, but failed to show for either.
Bellator made it through their first season without any major hiccups which was an anomaly given their weekly tournament format, but with Roger Huerta losing and Paulo Filho pulling out last-minute, they seem to be getting their first taste of how suddenly your luck can turn in mixed martial arts.
Image via Sherdog
“I’ve been on the phone with all the appropriate people and we’ve got everything in line,” Rebney today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) of the Bellator 18 “super fight.”
According to a report from GracieMag.com, Filho said he was unable to get a visa to travel to the U.S. because of documentation issues.
However, Rebney today spoke to Filho’s representatives, who said that Filho is traveling from Brazil to the U.S.on Monday and will have his pre-fight medical paperwork completed the next day. But there is a Plan B if Filho fails to materialize.
“We’ve backed ourselves up; we’ve done everything we needed to do in protecting the sanctity of that event, but my hope is that he shows up,” Rebney said. “I think Hector Lombard deserves this fight.”