After being able to say they’ve never had an event cancelled, ZUFFA has now had two in the span of a single month. Late tonight Strikeforce released a statement that Saturday’s Strikeforce: Melendez vs. Healy in Sacramento, California had been canceled due to an injury suffered to lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez. The Champion was scheduled to defend his title against Pat Heally.
Following the injury to Melendez, Showtime decided it wasn’t going to air the event on either Showtime or Showtime Extreme and informed ZUFFA / Strikeforce. Without the event being televised by Showtime and without Melendez in the main event the event was canceled.
“When SHOWTIME informed us that it would not be airing the event, we made the difficult decision to cancel Saturday’s card in Sacramento,” STRIKEFORCE CEO Scott Coker said. “Without a television partner, we simply could not move forward with this event. We wish Gilbert a speedy recovery and will work diligently and quickly to reschedule the fighters affected by this news on upcoming cards.”
They say when it rains it pours and right now for ZUFFA it’s pouring big time!
[Update: 9-24-12] Today Chris DeBlasio of Showtime Sports released a statement regarding the situation after receiving multiple inquires.
“On Friday night Strikeforce informed us that headliner Gilbert Melendez had sustained an injury and would not be able to compete in the September 29 Strikeforce event. After reviewing the remaining matchups on the card, we concluded that there were no other fights suitable to headline our SHOWTIME telecast. On Saturday morning, we reluctantly informed Strikeforce that we could not continue with our plans to the televise the event.”
[Update: 9-25-12] MMA Junkie is reporting that ZUFFA will pay all 19 fighters (Gilbert Melendez is not included) on the card.
If you bought tickets for Strikeforce: Melendez vs. Healy, refunds will be available at point of sale.