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Inspired By Will Ribeiro's Plight, Jason Reinhardt Seeks Big-Stage Win At UFC 127

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DCRage

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Jason Reinhardt has been granted a second chance to make a first impression. It is both a unique circumstance and a statement that implies his initial opportunity did not go as planned, which is affirmative. After accumulating a sparkling, unblemished record on the regional circuit fighting mostly in the Midwest, he got the call from the UFC to compete on the UFC 78 card in November 2007. Unfortunately, his night would last a mere 74 seconds. Then-hotshot prospect Joe Lauzon secured a body-lock takedown, worked to assume a dominant position, and forced Reinhardt to give up his back and tap to a perfectly executed rear-naked choke. It was a harsh reality to endure for a man who spent years trying to reach the sport's pinnacle. The loss forced him back to the regional circuit , where he promptly won back-to-back fights via first-round stoppage. It was enough to propel him back into the good graces of the Zuffa brass; Reinhardt was pegged to welcome Chinese import Zhang Tie Quan to the U.S. on the WEC 51 card this past September. The proposed bout, however, simply was not meant to be. Reinhardt failed a pre-fight medical exam conducted by the Colorado State Boxing Commission that halted the matchup in its tracks.
Post UFC-WEC merger, the same matchup with Quan again was given legs by management, only this time it will fall under the UFC banner. The pair finally squares off on the preliminary card of UFC 127, which takes place Feb. 27 in Sydney, Australia. A source of further inspiration for his impeding fight is the current situation of his friend Will Ribeiro. Ribeiro, once a promising WEC fighter, continues to struggle in many facets of his life following a devastating 2008 motorcycle crash that has relegated him to a wheelchair. "I talk to him all the time on e-mail," Reinhardt said. "He's hurting. He doesn't even have food in his apartment. The only person that stuck by him is his brother (Wladimir). He can walk a little bit with a walker. He can get up, but he'll never fight again, never. I am hoping one day he can teach and still be involved in the sport.
"When I get home, I am going to do a big-fight show promotion (under his co-owned Courage Fighting Championships), and if it makes money, I am going to get the proceeds and get him over here to the United States so he can get the rehab he deserves. The guy needs our help. We can't turn our back on one of our own."

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Post #1   1/24/11 8:46:33AM   

pmoney

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Good for Reinhardt. I hope he wins.

Post #2   1/24/11 6:24:00PM   

BigCountryFedor

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its been awhile since we've heard from will ribeiro and his recovery and its really sad what one mistake can do to your life and your promising career. now the guy can never fight again and he now lives his life in a wheelchair. its even sadder because he was a really good bantamweight who was ranked and probably still would be.

Post #3   1/25/11 3:25:30PM