Even before getting choked out by Louis Gaudinot on Saturday night, John Lineker had a pained look on his face.
Pain be damned, the Brazilian prospect brawled his heart out against Gaudinot. Although he was tapped out in the second round, it’s amazing Lineker fought as well as he did, given his pre-fight tribulations.
Matheus Aquino, a friend of Lineker and manager of Bellator’s Pitbull brothers, revealed startling information on his Twitter account. Lineker came to the US by himself because his corner men had visa issues.
But it gets worse. Aquino also tweeted that the diminutive Brazilian came without training equipment, and he didn't have a mouthpiece or a cup, both of which he had to borrow at Saturday’s venue. Furthermore, Aquino noted that Lineker had no sponsors, and if not for some last minute help from Brazilian Top Team, his situation would have been worse.
Without the counsel of his trusty corner men, Lineker tested the volatile science of cutting weight by himself.
Somehow, he made it to fight night intact, and put on a gutsy performance against TUF veteran Gaudinot. Lineker threw more punches in the first round than I have ever seen a fighter throw. His combinations were lightning, and he was unrelenting despite his horrible pre-fight circumstances.
Hopefully, Lineker uses the $65,000 “Fight of the Night” bonus wisely and joins a solid camp that will look after him better.
On Saturday, the kid showed promising skills and the heart of a warrior.