KJ Noons pulled from Strikeforce: 'Miami' event with Billy Evangelista hurt


Former Elite XC lightweight champion KJ Noons is patiently waiting to make his return to Strikeforce -- but it won't be against Billy Evangelista on the main card of the upcoming "Miami" event slated for the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise, Florida, on Jan. 30.

MMAmania.com (www.mmamania.com) confirmed with Noons earlier today that he's been pulled from the card and "placed on standby" after Evangelista reportedly suffered an undisclosed injury in training.

Noons -- who is ready to compete in the unlikely event another fighter withdraws from the card -- has been out of mixed martial arts for more than a year following his retirement from the sport in late 2008 after he was stripped of his 155-pound title for refusing to accept a rematch with Nick Diaz under the terms Elite XC was offering.

"King Karl" felt that his previous performance against Diaz (a first round technical knockout) and his lone title defense -- a first round technical knockout victory over Yves Edwards in June of 2008 -- was enough to at least earn himself a bigger paycheck than Diaz in the rematch.

The promotion, however, apparently disagreed, causing a big mess and ultimately leading to Noons being forced to relinquish his title.

The ex-boxer then decided to make an attempt to return to his roots inside the ring, but a disappointing decision loss to James Countryman earlier this year threw a wrench into those plans. The City Boxing product did manage to put together a solid record of 4-1 as a pugilist, but he likely wasn't going to be winning a world title anytime soon.

That may not be the case in Strikeforce; however, he can't start making waves until he starts throwing hands -- which may not happen before April.

Stay tuned.

The Jan. 30 Strikeforce event is set to air at 10 p.m. ET live on Showtime and will mark the promotion’s debut in the "Sunshine State." The main event features Nick Diaz vs. Marius Zaromskis for the vacant Strikeforce welterweight title. Current Strikeforce Women's Champion Cristian 'Cyborg' Santos will also be in action against Marloes Coenen.

For more on Strikeforce: "Miami" click here.

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