Tell me if you've heard this before.
A planned title defense against for Strikeforce Middleweight Champion Luke Rockhold against Lorenz Larkin next month (Jan. 12, 2013) has been canceled following another injury to the American Kickboxing Academy standout.
According to a report from MMA Fight Corner, Rockhold reaggravated the wrist injury which forced him out of his last title defense, also against Larkin, which eventually led to the cancellation of Strikeforce's last Nov. 3 show.
"The bottom line is that now this is the second time he's pulled out. We've been in camp; we've been prepared for both fights. At this point we're highly frustrated. We were prepared to fight Luke Rockhold for the title regardless of what's going to happen with Strikeforce after January 12th. We've been prepared both times and this is just totally unprofessional."
DeWitt believes Rockhold's old wrist injury never healed, so he never should have signed the bout agreement in the first place and wasted his client's time in training camp. This sounds similar to the complains that many fans have had towards Dan Henderson in the fallout of the UFC 151 fiasco:
"If you receive a bout agreement and can't fight you should say something right away. He's putting a lot of pressure on matchmakers because they're trying to put on this final card. What are you doing to Zuffa when you're pulling out and they're spending weeks on promoting the fight? Now they have to find a replacement fight and he needs to fight. When you think about it he hasn't fought in six months. So it's not only about fighting for a title but also from a financial stand point. It's frustrating. You signed to fight; you signed a bout agreement so let's fight."
Larkin's manager wasn't the only person who was upset following the nixing of the title bout. The normally reserved middleweight erupted on Twitter, blasting the entire era of fighters pulling out of scheduled contests.
@danawhite hey Dana I hurt my right pinky toe guess I can't fight wish I started 2 years before I did so I could have skipped this pussy era— Lorenz Larkin (@da_MONSOON) November 25, 2012
Rockhold is the second Strikeforce champion to back out of the Jan. 12 event. Gilbert Melendez pulled out of his scheduled title defense against Pat Healy just over a week ago. What was once a loaded show with three title fights has now been scaled down to one title fight featuring welterweight champion Nate Marquardt against Tarec Saffiedine. The welterweight title fight is now expected to be promoted to the main event.
Are you surprised, Maniacs? Or at this point, is this to be expected?