Brett Cooper did not emerge unscathed from his last fight. | Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com
Brett Cooper and Brandon Halsey will have to wait a little longer for their meeting in the Bellator MMA Season 10 middleweight tournament final.
The promotion Monday announced that a back injury will keep Cooper out of the matchup, which was scheduled to take place this Friday as the main event of Bellator 119 in Rama, Ontario.
“After my fight with Kendall [Grove], my back just hasn’t been where I need it to be to have a proper training camp for one of the biggest fights of my career,” Cooper stated in a release. “It’s a setback, but with some time off, I should be ready to go by late July.”
Cooper, who has twice come up short against reigning Bellator middleweight ace Alexander Shlemenko, advanced to his third tournament final with a March 28 knockout of Grove. Unbeaten Halsey punched his ticket with an April 11 unanimous decision against Joe Pacheco.
Also nixed from Friday’s main card was a featherweight encounter between Shahbulat Shamhalaev and Fabricio “Guerreiro” da Silva. That bout was scratched when “issues arose in the passport process” for da Silva, according to Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney, who stated that the fight should be rescheduled shortly.
With the alterations to the card, the Bellator Season 10 featherweight tournament final between Daniel Weichel and Desmond Green will now serve as the evening’s main event. Marius Zaromskis and Vaughn Anderson’s welterweight bout has been promoted to the Spike TV-broadcast main card, as has Raphael Butler and Nick Rossborough’s heavyweight tilt.