Two bouts initially scheduled to take place on the main card of Bellator 119, Brett Cooper vs. Brandon Halsey and Shahbulat Shamhalaev vs. Fabricio Guerreiro, have been scratched from the event's final lineup, Bellator officials announced Monday.
Cooper (20-9) and Halsey (6-0) were slated to fight in the finals Bellator's current middleweight tournament, however Cooper ultimately had to withdraw due to a back injury.
"After my fight with Kendall [Grove], my back just hasn't been where I need it to be to have a proper training camp for one of the biggest fights of my career," Cooper said. "It's a setback, but with some time off, I should be ready to go by late July. I never like missing time, but I know this is the right move. I'll be back stronger, and I'm looking forward to winning another tournament and getting another shot against Shlemenko."
Likewise, Shamhalaev (12-2-1) vs. Guerreiro (19-3) has been postponed due to "passport issues."
"Unfortunately issues arose in the passport process for Guerreiro, and because the fight is in Ontario, we weren't confident these issues with be resolved by May 9th," said Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney. "However, we should have news shortly on when this fight will be rescheduled, as these are two guys I've wanted back in our cage, and it should make for a great fight."
Bellator 119 takes place on May 9, 2014 at the Casino Rama in Ontario, Canada. An updated fight card can be seen below.
Preliminary Card (MMAFighting.com):
Eric Wisely vs. John Alessio
Brian Rogers vs. Adrian Miles
Stuart Austin vs. Craig Hudson
Jason Meisel vs. Remy Bussieres
Chris Kelades vs. Malcolm Gordon
Behrang Yousefi vs. Chad Freeman