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Schilling, Gotreau out of July fights Print E-mail
Written by Ben Pherson   
Tuesday, 12 July 2011 09:59

The Target Center show took a big hit today when it was announced that American Top Team of Savage's Robbie Gotreau was forced to pull out of his fight with TUF veteran Paul Bradley due to injury.

Gotreau and Bradley were to meet in a welterweight showdown during CFX's Extreme Challenge 188 at Target Center on July 23. Tickets for the event still are a available through participating fighters and ticketmaster.com

Gotreau suffered a serious eye injury while training and will be out for an undisclosed amount of time. He had climbed to No. 6 in the MNMMANEWS Unified Rankings at 170 pounds and would have entered the fight with a 9-1 pro record. Gotreau's lone loss was to UFC veteran Chad Reiner.

Bradley is a TUF veteran with a 15-2 record. The Minnesota Martial Arts Academy product is a former University of Iowa All-American wrestler.

Extreme Challenge matchmaker Gavin Rydell said it's a disappointing blow to the card. "That's a fight I was very excited to see, but Robbie has a serious injury and there's not much you can do about it," Rydell said.

Rydell already has a replacement lined up: journeyman Eddie Larrea of Wisconsin.

Larrea's record on mma.tv is listed at 11-14, though he is on a two-fight winning streak.

"It's tough to find opponents for Paul to begin with, especially on short notice," Rydell said. "But Eddie is a veteran. He's been in there with the best, including Brock (Larson). He'll come to fight and won't give anything away to Paul."

Many fans have asked Rydell and members of the media if the show is in jeopardy due to the state

shutdown. The state regulates mixed martial arts via the Minnesota Combative Sports Commission. The commission is on shutdown with the rest of the state.

 

But Rydell said the show will go on. "We have a backup plan in place, and the fans shouldn't be worried," Rydell said. "Hopefully the shutdown will end before the show and we won't have to worry about it."

•••

Nick Gamst's Treasure Island show on July 30 also took a major hit this week.

Gamst informed MNMMANEWS today that Pat Schilling has pulled out of his scheduled fight against Rich Taylor.

Schilling, who is 4-1 with his lone loss coming against Bruce Johnson, was set to take on Taylor, who is 11-2 and trains at the Minnesota Martial Arts Academy, in a showdown of two of Minnesota's top 145-pounders. Taylor was ranked No. 1 in Minnesota before he dropped out of the poll due to inactivity due to two hand surgeries over the last year. Schilling is up to No. 7 in the latest rankings.

"Pat Schilling has pulled off the card because I guess there is anticipation that he will be signed with a bigger promotion in the near future," Gamst said. "It's very disappointing. Obviously the goal was to walk away from that fight with a true 145-pound Brutaal champion, and now we won't get to see that fight."

Gamst already has a replacement in mind, but he declined to mention a name until a contract is signed. He did say Taylor will remain on the card and he will line up a replacement.

The rest of the card is set, though. Gamst said there's the potential he will add one more fight later this week.

"You know, it's not the Target Center card, but I really, really like what we've put together, and I'm loving these matchups," he said. "We have some fights that fans of MMA in this state should not miss."

Arguably the card's most important fight will happen in the heavyweight division when Reese Hernandez and Kevin Asplund clash in a rematch of last year's MNMMANEWS fight of the year. Asplund won a tight, split decision at the Target Center in December.

Asplund, who is 17-1 as a pro, is ranked No. 2 in Minnesota, while Hernandez (9-2) is No. 3. This fight will be for the Brutaal heavyweight title, which currently is held by Asplund.

Two belts will be on the line when Justin Rheaume and Anthony Mix clash at a catch weight of 190. Mix holds the Brutaal Genesis 185-pound belt, while Rheaume holds the 200-pound belt.

Hope Sanftner and Melissa Schiro will fight for the Brutaal Genesis 145-pound title as well.

"Maybe the fight I'm most excited for is Johnny Case vs. Derek Getzel. I've been waiting for this rematch, and now we'll finally get to see it," Gamst said. "We'll see who our best 155-pounder is."

Other matchups Gamst mentioned today included Kelly Beyers vs. Mike Downey, Brad Scholten vs. Steve Shaw, Josh Erdmann vs. Clay Tix, Andrew Flattum vs. Justin Dudley and Lance Harding vs. TBD.

Tickets for the show start at just $20 and are available through the Treasure Island website at this link.

•••

Matchmaker Jeremy Bjornberg has announced that mixed martial arts will return to Grand Casino in Hinckley.

Bjornberg is hosting a show there on Aug. 19, and several of Minnesota's top fighters will be in action.

Bjornberg said standout Marcus "The Prospect" LeVesseur will be competing in the main event that evening. LeVesseur (22-5) is ranked No. 2 in Minnesota at 155. He's coming off of two huge wins over TUF veteran Dane Sayers and UFC vet Brian Geraghty.

A pair of 10K MMA standouts, Rene Vargas and Chris Hansmann, along with Tony Norlander, also are expected to be in action at Grand Casino.

Bjornberg said tickets will be on sale for this event starting next week. MNMMANEWS.com will have more updates on this card as they become available.

•••

A note to readers, the latest Minnesota MMA News Unified Rankings will not be released on the normal date (the 20th of the month) due to the state shutdown. The new rankings will be released the first week of August, after the Target Center and Treasure Island shows are complete. For future months, the rankings will be released on the first.

•••

Don't forget Minnesota standout Karl Knothe is fighting this weekend against former UFC heavyweight champion Ricco Rodriguez. That fight can be seen live on HDNet on Friday night beginning at 7:30 p.m. Knothe will battle Rodriguez in the night's co-main event.