Affliction on Friday announced the cancellation of its August 1 “Trilogy” event, which was to take place at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California and air live on pay-per-view, citing its inability to fight a suitable opponent to face Fedor Emelianenko in the event’s headliner.
Emelianenko’s original opponent, Josh Barnett, failed to be licensed for the fight earlier this week after testing positive for steroids.
Numerous possible opponents were mentioned in recent days, including Vitor Belfort, Bobby Lashley, Brett Rogers, and Jeff Monson, but ultimately the promotion decided it was better to scrap the card, while vowing to promote future shows.
The press release announcing the cancellation is below:
Seal Beach, California (July 24, 2009) – The highly anticipated fight between Fedor Emelianenko and Josh Barnett at the Affliction Trilogy MMA show has been cancelled. The mega fight was scheduled to take place at the Honda Center in Anaheim on August 1st. The unforeseen license denial of Josh Barnett gave Affliction limited time to find a replacement and adequately promote the new main event.
“Finding an opponent for the number one ranked MMA heavy weight champion in such a short period of time was a huge endeavor and I’m thrilled at the amount of fighters willing to take on this challenge,” said Tom Atencio, vice president of Affliction Entertainment. “But in the end, we just didn’t have enough time to promote a new fight to our standards.”
Affliction is deeply disappointed that the under card is also cancelled through no fault of its own. Affliction stands behind the company’s brands and delivers premium products to the most passionate and loyal customers. Affliction’s first priority is to ensure that all future events live up to the company’s high standards.
Ticket holders for the canceled event should contact Ticketmaster or ticketmaster.com for a refund.