Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) lightweight Melvin Guillard is stepping up on short notice to fill in for kickboxer Andy Souwer against Japanese legend Takanori Gomi at RIZIN 11 on July 29 from inside Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan, per a recent announcement by the promotion (shown below).
Guillard, 35, is currently riding the worst skid of his career with seven-straight losses. “Young Assassin” nearly broke that streak back in 2016 with a knockout win over Bellator MMA veteran Dave Rickels, but Guillard later tested positive for a banned substance and the win was overturned to a no contest. Guillard’s last win came against Gesias Cavalcante under the World Series of Fighting (WSOF) banner back in 2014.
Takanori Gomi（ @Takanori_Gomi ） gets a new opponent for #RIZIN11 and will now face Melvin Guillard（ @Young__Assassin ）.— RIZIN FF OFFICIAL (@rizin_PR) June 30, 2018
大会概要・チケット情報は ➡️ https://t.co/tOSGnTbYDO #RIZINFF #RIZIN2018 pic.twitter.com/RAzI9x7Px7
Gomi, 39, has lost his last six fights all by way of first-round knockout or submission. Once considered one of the very best lightweights on the planet, “Fireball Kid” really never found his footing in UFC after his debut in 2010. Luckily, Gomi is competing back at home and will look to capture his first victory on Japanese soil since a TKO win over Eiji Mitsuoka at UFC 144 back in 2012.
RIZIN 11 will be headlined by a rematch between former UFC flyweight title challenger Kyoji Horiguchi and Shintaro Ishiwatari.