Nick Newell is back in the fray. The lightweight prospect inked a new four-fight deal with World Series of Fighting on Friday, and is now scheduled to fight an undetermined opponent on April 10 at WSOF 20, WSOF executive vice president and matchmaker Ali Abdel-Aziz informed MMAFighting.com.
Newell, 28, has been locked in contract negotiations with WSOF since his July 5 title challenge against WSOF lightweight champion Justin Gaethje, which headlined the promotion's inaugural show on NBC. A congenital amputee born without a left hand, Newell suffered the first loss of his professional fighting career against Gaethje, wilting under a second-round assault from the champ.
Newell racked up 11 consecutive victories to start his career prior to that fight, finishing all but one of those wins by either knockout or submission inside the first round, including a pair of first-round guillotine chokes over Keon Caldwell and Sabah Fadai to kick off his WSOF run.
Now he'll look to get back on track at WSOF 20, which takes place at the Foxwoods Resort Casino in Newell's own backyard of Ledyard, Connecticut.
Born in nearby Milford and doubted athletically his entire life, Newell acknowledged recently while speaking to MMAFighting.com that while he's heard the critics who say he should stop fighting following his loss to Gaethje, he isn't surprised by the sentiment.
"I kind of got myself ready for this a while ago," Newell said. "Obviously, as soon as I lose people are going to say, 'Oh he shouldn't fight anymore, that's bad. I can't believe that.' I didn't know I'm the only fighter that's not allowed to lose a fight. I'm sorry, I guess. But it happens. Everyone loses. No one is perfect. I'm far from perfect, but I'm more than capable.
"I've already proven myself beyond a shadow of a doubt that I'm worthy and I'll have a good fight with anyone in the world. I think I'm one of the best in the world. My last fight, it wasn't a good day. I'm trying to get to the point where even if I have a bad day, I can beat anyone. It's a work in progress."