Though EliteXC signed Falaniko Vitale (Pictures) on short notice to fight Joey Villasenor (Pictures), it appears the Hawaiian will have flown to San Jose, Calif. just to watch some mixed martial arts action.
Both California State Athletic Commission Executive Officer Armando Garcia and Vitale's agent, Ken Pavia, told Sherdog.com Tuesday evening that medical questions surrounding Murilo Rua (Pictures) were likely resolved, and that if things progressed down their current track "Ninja" would face Villasenor on the co-promoted Strikeforce/EliteXC card on June 22.
EliteXC announced on June 15 that the Brazilian veteran was off the card after failing a CSAC physical exam. However, "Ninja" was never denied a license and comparisons between this situation and that of Hong-Man Choi, who was pulled off the Los Angeles FEG USA-promoted card on June 2 due to the discovery of a benign tumor on his pituitary gland, were unfair, said Garcia.
Pavia indicated that Vitale would be compensated for his time and trouble and EliteXC agreed to sign the veteran middleweight to a long-term deal.
Regarding a report that surfaced Tuesday on graciefighter.com about the status of Phil Baroni (Pictures), who is scheduled to fight Frank Shamrock (Pictures) on the card's main event, Garcia said the middleweight underwent standard MRI tests required of all licensees.
Pavia, who also represents Baroni, said results should be known sometime Wednesday morning and that he believed his client would be cleared to fight.
Armando (head of CSAC) says Ninja has been cleared to fight and a final ruling will be made on Baroni Wednesday afternoon
This is awesome news... Good find
w00t war Rua bros and Chuteboxe.