Cagewriter - Mixed Martial Arts

Rip Tom Atencio all you want. The Affliction VP may be driving his fight promotion into bankruptcy but he's put together an unreal card for MMA fans. It may only equate to 100,000-150,000 pay-per-view buys at best, but it's a helluva way to go out if it is the final Affliction show.

The latest fighter added to the card is Takanori Gomi, one of the biggest stars in Japan over the last five years. He's arguably the best Japanese knockout artist and Affliction has landed him for the August 1 card. It's just his second time fighting in the U.S. The last time, he was in Las Vegas at Pride 33 in early 2007. Nick Diaz pulled the upset in what was a Fight of the Year candidate.

Gomi (30-5) hit the skids losing back-to-back fights in late 2008 and early 2009 but he rebounded to crush Takashi Nakakura back in May. He had a stretch of 15 wins in 17 fights from 2004 to mid-2008. A focused, in-shape Gomi is a dangerous fighter. He'll be facing  Rafaello “Tractor” Oliveira (8-1) at Affliction: Trilogy.

Fedor Emelianenko (30-1) v. Josh Barnett (24-5)
Gegard Mousasi (25-2-1) v. Renato "Babalu" Sobral (32-8)
Jorge Santiago (21-7) v. Vitor Belfort (18-8)
Paul Buentello (27-10) v. Gilbert Yvel (36-13-1)
Jay Hieron (17-4) vs. Paul Daley (21-8-2)
Takanori Gomi (30-5) vs. Rafaello Oliveira (8-1)

Undercard Bouts (on HDNet):
Dan Lauzon (12-2) vs. Chris Horodecki (12-1)
Ben Rothwell (30-6) vs. Chase Gormley (6-0)
Brett Cooper (9-4) vs. Akbarh Arreola (14-4-1)
Javier Vazquez (13-2) vs. LC Davis (13-2)
Deividas Taurosevicius (10-3) vs. Mark Hominick (16-8)

Preliminary Bouts (non-televised):
Jessie Gibbs (7-2) vs. Rob Broughton (10-4-1)
Lucio Linhares (12-4-0) vs. Givanildo Santana (12-1-0)

Wow, 13 fights. Lauzon and Horodecki should be a great one, as is Davis against Vasquez. The Buentello-Yvel fight is a great style matchup. Someone will go down in that one. There's intrigue with the Belfort-Santiago fight. This is no easy fight for Belfort, who with a loss, could possibly blow his shot at a return to the UFC and a fight against Anderson Silva. We also get to see another step in the evolution of Gegard Mousasi. Is he legitimately a top 10 fighter at 205 or 185? A win over Babalu looks good on anyone's resume.

Bout info via MMAWeekly

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