16-2 Jordan Smith Replaces Foster in Bellator Welterweight Tournament at Bellator 63; Brian Foster out of Bellator Welterweight Tournament Quarterfinals

Written by: Eddie Goldman
2012-03-23
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From Bellator FightingChampionships:

CHICAGO, Ill. (March 22, 2012) —Bellator newcomer Jordan Smith will now get a chance to make a run in thestacked Bellator Season 6 Welterweight Tournament as talented 170-pounder BrianFoster is officially ineligible for action in the quarterfinals, which begin atBellator 63 next Friday, March 30 at the Mohegan Sun Arena.

According to the Mohegan Sun Commission, Foster will need to be screened foradditional testing before he is medically cleared to fight. The 18-5welterweight was originally scheduled to face David Rickels in the openinground, but now the 27-year-old Smith gets his shot in the $100,000 tournament.

"Brian’s a hugely talented fighter who we were hoping to see next Friday,but his Bellator premiere will need to be delayed just a bit" BellatorChairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney said. "But to pick up a rising star inJordan Smith and place him into the fire of our $100,000 WelterweightTournament is what makes great moments. The Mohegan Sun Commission is one ofthe best in the world and we support their decision."

The 16-2-1 Smith has recent victories over one-time UFC contender Karo Parisyanand a win in November against Josh McDonald. But now the One Hit and BlackHouse MMA trained fighter is staring his dream right in the face."This isthe best opportunity I’ve ever had in my career," Smith said.

"This is the break I’ve been waiting for. What I like about Bellator isthere’s a clear line of sight to the title."

Known for his striking prowess, the Layton, Utah fighter remains well-rounded –earning seven of his wins by KO/TKO and seven of his wins by submission. Withthe short time Smith has had to prepare, the fight-finishing mixed martialartist has quickly brushed up on his opponent.

"It’s such short notice that I haven’t had a chance to do much research onDave," Smith added. "I see that he’s undefeated and most of his winshave come by submission. From the clips I’ve seen it looks like he finds a wayto win."

More on Bellator 63: Bellator Fighting Championships returns to Mohegan SunArena on March 30 for Bellator 63: The Assassin vs. Psycho. The Friday nightaffair will feature the quarterfinals of the Bellator Season 6 WelterweightTournament, along with a host of preliminary fights featuring some of the bestEast Coast talent the sport has to offer. Tickets for the event are on sale andare available through Ticketmaster.com or at the Mohegan Sun Box Office.Tickets are priced from $30-$70.

The event will broadcast LIVE starting at 8 p.m. EST on MTV2 and incommercial-free HD on EPIX. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. EST, with the first fightscheduled for 7 p.m. EST. The preliminary card, featuring the area’s top localtalent will be streamed LIVE and FREE around the world on Spike.com starting at7 p.m. EST.

The night will be highlighted by Karl "Psycho" Amoussou(@KarlAmoussou) and Chris "The Cleveland Assassin" Lozano as the twovie for a spot in the welterweight semifinals. The Frenchman, Amoussou is knownfor his tenacious style and desire to finish every fight, leading to 11 finishesin his 13 career wins. For Lozano, the Cleveland Assassin looks for anothershot at the Bellator title after coming up short last year against eventualtournament winner Douglas Lima. While Lozano should be a familiar name toBellator fans after competing in the previous two welterweight tournaments, theevolution Lozano has made over the last half year should make "TheCleveland Assassin" one of the most dangerous fighters inside the Bellatorcage.

Former Bellator Welterweight finalist Ben Saunders (@BenSaundersMMA) returnsand will take on Bellator newcomer Raul Amaya in quarterfinal action. Saunderstore through the Bellator Season 5 Welterweight tournament with a TKO victoryover Chris Cisneros and a submission victory of Brazilian jiu-jitsu black beltLuis "Sapo" Santos, but fell short against tournament winner DouglasLima in the finals and now Saunders is poised to make another run at the title.Amaya enters the tournament with a spotless 9-0 record and will be looking tostay perfect on his way to the finals.

Long time Bellator veteran Bryan "The Beast" Baker (@bryanbeastbaker)is making the drop to welterweight and will try his hand at 170 lbs. when hebattles Carlos "Indio" Pereira. Fighting almost exclusively out ofBrazil, Pereira brings a wealth of experience to the Bellator cage, and shouldbe a force within a loaded welterweight tournament.

For more information, visit Bellator.com, follow Bellator on Twitter@BellatorMMA, follow Bellator Chairman & CEO Bjorn Rebney @BjornRebney andcheck out Bellator on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Bellator