BJPenn.Com Exclusive: Tyson Nam Waits on the Sideline While His Attorneys Fight with Bellator
Bantamweight sensation Tyson Nam should be enjoying the biggest win of his career right now. On August 25th Nam knocked out current Bellator Bantamweight Champion Eduardo Dantas at 1:36 of the first round in Brazil. His elation soon came to an end and put a damper on his great accomplishment.
The 28-year-old Nam isn’t able to enjoy the fruit of his labor because of an ongoing disagreement with Bellator. The organization had signed Nam to a contract, but released him without ever utilizing him during the six months he was with them. They had offered him a spot in the BW tournament, but that was canceled and other promises were never kept.
After knocking Dantas out cold Bellator decided they would invoke a clause in his contract which allowed them to match any offers he received from other promotions despite the fact that they had no intention using him. So now he must wait until his lawyers and Bellators lawyers hash out some sort of agreement.
“We’re kind of arguing all over again,” Nam told BJPenn.Com Radio. “Bellator matched an offer we received and the promotion that made the offer then counter-offered. Bellator is saying we already matched it despite the fact that it’s a completely new offer. My agents are also attorneys and we have hired someone outside of their company to assist us. They are doing such a great job and they are going to war with the Bellator attorneys in New Jersey.”
Dana White had some harsh comments about Bellator at the UFC 152 post fight conference. He called what Bellator does dirty and said when he releases a fighter he lets them go. What Bellator is doing is hurting Nam and not allowing him to earn a living.
“I was watching what Dana had said and he put it perfectly,” Nam admitted. “They aren’t using me and they release me which in my mind shows me they don’t want anything to do with me. Then I win a fight which I’m sure they felt was a guaranteed win for Dantas, but things didn’t certainly didn’t go according to plan. Now they’re starting up with me all over again. There are a handful of guys who are stuck in the same situation that I’m in. Bellator is doing this to a lot of guys and it’s a little upsetting.”
Is Bellator missing the boat on a potential rematch between Nam and Dantas? Because of their tournament style format Nam isn’t assured a rematch with the man he just knocked out in the event he resigns with the organization.
“In their mind that I had absolutely no chance to win that fight,” said Nam. “If you looked at it on paper then there was really no way I should have won, but they didn’t know that I was training and getting better. I have a lot of good training partners who are fighting in the UFC and Bellator. They overlooked that aspect and as that fight went down there is no way I should’ve won. We were in his hometown and he was on a seven or eight fight winning streak where he was running through guys.”
After knocking Dantas out an elated Nam took off running from the ring as if he was afraid for his life, but he was just so excited he didn’t know what to do with himself.
“I ran straight back into the locker room I was so excited I must have ran around the back non-stop for 15 minutes,” offered Nam. “When the knockout happened all I heard were crickets and the crowd was dead silent. I was just so excited and the ring felt so small that I couldn’t contain myself!”
The obvious solution from the outside looking in is for Bellator to take advantage of all the attention Nam is receiving, but even if they offer him a fair contract he may not be that interested in fighting for the organization after everything that has transpired.
“I have no problem with the Bellator name or challenging their fighters,” Nam said. “If I do fight for Bellator how will that help my career progress? I have to go and win three fights to rematch their champion who I already knocked out. Does that help me move forward or do I try and fight in different promotions against fighters I haven’t faced yet and help legitimize myself as a top 10 bantamweight? I think it makes more sense to challenge these other world class fighters.”
Nam’s fans made a huge push for him to be signed by the UFC after his shocking upset of Dantas. Dana White was besieged with Tweets asking him to add Nam to their bantamweight division. There have been a few promotions who have expressed interest in signing him, but he isn’t at liberty to discuss that as of yet.
“I’ve been told to keep it hush-hush and all I can say is one company is a brand new promotion. I have other offers on the table and one of them is the most recognizable name in the sport, but that’s all I can say right now until everything is finalized,” Nam said while laughing.
For now Nam is trying to stay busy and stay in shape. After taking some time off to relax he is preparing to hit the gym and make sure if the situation he’s in is cleared up, he will be ready to answer the call.
“I came home to Hawaii to see some family and friends,” stated Nam. “As of tomorrow I will be back up in Portland and back to the grind. I train with Advanced Sports Lab with guys like Mike Pierce, Ian Loveland and Tim Welch. We have a really good team with a great group of coaches. I am getting ready in the hopes that I will have a fight in November or December if all goes well.”
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I'm a married father of two and a lifelong Long Island resident.
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