Brandon Halsey replaces Newton vs. Jiri Prochazka at RIZIN 14
Weeks after being announced for RIZIN 14, former Bellator titleholder Emanuel Newton has suffered broken ribs in practice. As a result, he will no longer be able to face Jiri Prochazka at RIZIN 14.
The promotion has announced his replacement, and it comes in the form of another former Bellator champ; Brandon Halsey.
Jiri Prochazka vs. Brandon Halsey
Despite nearly a year of build-up to facing Mirko Cro Cop on NYE, violent Czech brawler Jiri Prochazka (22-3-1) will not be facing the legendary Croatian at RIZIN 14. Luckily for all of us, though, Prochazka will still be competing on the show. With a record of 7-1 in the organization, he is one of the best fighters in RIZIN history.
After two-straight KO wins in two days during RIZIN’s inaugural grand-prix events in ’17, Prochazka lost to “King Mo” in the championship bout. Since that loss, he is a perfect 6-0. Aside from a one-off in Fusion FN to get back into the swing of things post-injury early last year, the Czech has continued to brutalize the opposition in RIZIN. He has smashed Bruno Cappelozza and Jake Heun thus far in 2018, picking up a first-round finish against both.
Much like the man he will be replacing on NYE, Brandon Halsey (12-4) has seen a slight fall from grace since the days of him holding the Bellator championship. He hasn’t quite gone and lost six of his last seven like Emanuel Newton, however.
After a shocking 35-second win over Alexander Shlemenko to claim the Bellator 185-lb title in 2014, Halsey went on to successfully defend his title against Kendall Grove the following year. This before dropping two-straight, being handily finished by Rafael Carvalho and John Salter. The latter of which would be his last appearance inside a Bellator cage. Halsey then traveled to Russia to rematch Shlemenko in M-1 but was finished faster than he had beaten Shlemenko three years prior. Since then, he boasts a nice record of 3-1, only losing Vinny Magalhaes in between two solid wins inside the PFL light heavyweight tournament.
RIZIN 14 is slated to go down on December 31, live from the Saitama Super Arena in Japan.
The card is absolutely loaded and will feature the likes of Floyd Mayweather, Tenshin Nasukawa, Kyoji Horiguchi, Darrion Caldwell, and more.
Prior to this card, ‘RIZIN: Yarennoka!’ will take place. The promotion has announced a new bout for that show as well. RISE veteran Taiju Shiratori will face former Kaito foe Yoshiya Uzatsuyo.