Rolando Velasco says his new opponent is his “toughest test yet.” | Photo: Jeff Sherwood/Sherdog.com
Rolando Velasco has a new opponent for the main event of Tachi Palace Fights 22 “Champions Collide 2.”
TPF officials Monday confirmed to Sherdog.com that Velasco’s original opponent, Jeremiah Labiano, has been forced to withdraw from the Feb. 5 card due to an MCL injury. Velasco will now vie for the vacant TPF bantamweight title against Brazil’s Fabiano “Jacarezinho” da Conceicao.
The event will stream live on Sherdog.com from Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino in Lemoore, Calif.
Velasco has won all four of his bouts inside the Tachi cage, earning his right to fight for the belt by putting Sergio Cortez to sleep with an arm-triangle choke at TPF 21 in November. The Last Stand Fight Team product has not lost since 2009, when he suffered a second-round stoppage against current UFC fighter Chris Cariaso.
“I’m very excited for my new opponent,” Velasco said in a statement to Sherdog.com. “I’m not sure how well-known he is in the mainstream media, but he is a monster. He is definitely going to be my toughest test yet. I was not expecting to be facing guys with so much experience until I got into the bigger shows, but I know that I’m ready for this level of competition and I can’t wait to show that on Feb. 5.”
A member of Rio de Janeiro’s X-Gym, Conceicao carries an impressive record of 24-6-1, including 11 wins by way of submission and seven via knockout. The 26-year-old will make his stateside debut having won eight of his last nine appearances, with four of those wins coming under the banner of leading Brazilian promotion Jungle Fight.
Jeff Sherwood contributed to this report.