Just a week before its lightweight grand prix tournament, Shine Fights has had to make a fairly major change in plans.
The promotion had a one-night, eight-man lightweight tournament planned for Sept. 10 at the Patriot Center on the George Mason University campus in Fairfax, Va. But MMA Fighting has learned that though the tournament will still go on, Shine will pack up camp and move the event to Oklahoma. The exact location and venue is not yet known.
According to a source close to the promotion, the issue at the heart of the move was a marketing push by Shine that gave fans the opportunity to choose the matchups for the first-round bouts in the tournament. That apparently didn't sit well with Virginia's commission, which operates under the Virginia Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation. The commission wouldn't issue Shine a license because of the fan matchmaking, the source said.
So the promotion had to seek a state that would sanction the tournament, given the unique situation of the promotion letting the fans play matchmaker, and a new venue. Shine's official website still had the event listed for Virginia as of Saturday morning, along with a link to purchase tickets.
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