As we've learned time and time again, one-night tournaments often lead to wild and unforeseen match-up shifts at the last second. And for World Series of Fighting, that madness is starting early.
WSOF 25's eight-man lightweight bracket underwent a significant reshuffling after a pair of tournament competitors withdrew on Thursday. WSOF executive vice president Ali Abdel-Aziz confirmed to MMA Fighting's Ariel Helwani that tourney entrant Brian Cobb and tourney reserve fighter Benny Madrid are late scratches for the Nov. 20 event.
Cobb, a UFC veteran who arrived in Phoenix on Wednesday, was scheduled to meet fellow ex-UFC fighter Mike Ricci (10-4) in the opening round of the eight-man bracket, but instead has withdrawn from the competition for undisclosed reasons. Ricci will now fight Joe Condon (12-8), a California native who has gone 1-1 inside the WSOF cage.
Condon was previously scheduled to fight LaRue Burley (6-1) in a tourney reserve bout, however Burley will now take on Ramil Mustapayev (4-1), as Mustapayev's original opponent Benny Madrid was scratched from the card after fainting and being transported to the hospital while cutting weight on Thursday.
Due to the late flurry of match-up changes, Burley vs. Mustapayev will serve as the only tournament replacement bout of the night.
Cobb previously withdrew from WSOF 17's co-main event the day before fight night after suffering a knee injury on the treadmill.
WSOF 25 takes at the Comerica Theatre in Phoenix, AZ, and airs live on NBC Sports Network. The winner of the one-night, eight-man tournament is guaranteed a shot at WSOF lightweight champion Justin Gaethje. An updated field can be seen below, along with the rest of WSOF 25's fight card.
- Jason High vs. Estevan Payan
- Joseph Barajas vs. Erik Villalobos
- Jimmy Scully vs. Roberto Yong
- Luis Palomino vs. Richard Patishnock - tournament quarterfinals
- Brian Foster vs. Joao Zeferino - tournament quarterfinals
- Mike Ricci vs. Joe Condon - tournament quarterfinals
- Islam Mamedov vs. Jorge Patino - tournament quarterfinals
- LaRue Burley vs. Ramil Mustapayev - tournament reserve bout