For every fighter the UFC drops, World Series of Fighting gets stronger. With UFC veterans Jon Fitch, Rousimar Palhares, and Yushin Okami- among others- already on their payroll, WSOF took another step in competing with the world’s biggest promotion by agreeing to a multi-fight contract with recently released lightweight Melvin Guillard.
‘The Young Assassin’ confirmed the news via his Twitter account late Monday night, even posting an image of the contract signing. Terms and figures were not disclosed.
Just signed with WSOF it feeling good to be apart of something different its time to make some real money and get that belt.
— Melvin Guillard (@Young__Assassin) April 8, 2014
Of note is Guillard’s claim that he will be making “real money.” It comes at a time when an increasing number of current and former UFC fighters are advocating for a pay raise. Still, Guillard wasn’t in a position to bargain.
Guillard’s stint in the UFC was tumultuous, as best. For every Knockout of the Night award Guillard received, there was reason to doubt his integrity. He flipped a middle finger towards UFC 79 opponent Rich Clementi and tried to attack him after the fight, but was reprimanded by referee Herb Dean. He was released and brought back a few month later.
Following a UFC Fight Night loss to Joe Stevenson in April 2007, Guillard’s pre-fight drug test revealed traces of cocaine. He was suspended for eight months and fined $2,100. Guillard also caused a headache when he missed weight for a UFC 150 match with Donald Cerrone. Despite winning Fight of the Night honors, Guillard surrendered a percentage of his purse as payment for the penalty.
A contestant on The Ultimate Fighter 2, Guillard holds a 12-9 record in nine years with the UFC; his final fight a unanimous decision loss to Michael Johnson last month. For all the trouble he may bring, Guillard is worth the risk.
The ever-expanding WSOF lightweight division will suite Guillard well. While his first fight hasn’t been announced, there is a distinct possibility he debuts at the July 11 event, headlined by the Justin Gaethje-Nick Newell championship bout. Palhares and Fitch co-main event the card with Palhares’ welterweight title on the line.
Gesias ‘JZ’ Cavalcante has been sidelined since an injury forced him out of a WSOF 8 fight with Gaethje. If healthy, he would be ready for a July match with Guillard. Tyson Griffin is another candidate for ‘The Young Assassin,’ having signed a multi-fight deal with WSOF last summer. Neither Cavalcante or Griffin have a fight lined up and both are a fight or two away from competing for Gaethje’s belt.
With the ink on Guillard’s contract still wet, there is a lot of time for WSOF matchmaker Ali Abdel-Aziz to decide on a suitable matchup.
Stay tuned to Scifighting.com as news breaks on Guillard’s opponent.