During a World Series of Fighting (WSOF) 10 conference call Wednesday afternoon, WSOF President Ray Sefo and Executive Vice President/Matchmaker Ali Abdel-Aziz commented on High's release, expressing interest in the 18-5 professional fighter.
"I'd be interested in Jason High for sure," Sefo said. "He's a great fighter."
The controversy in signing High, of course, comes from the nature of his release from the UFC. Touching a referee in any capacity is a big-time no-no in the sport, and High crossed the line when he shoved referee Kevin Mulhall in the chest after his bout with Rafael dos Anjos.
Abdel-Aziz noted that this is definitely wrong and unacceptable, but he thinks that everybody deserves a second chance, including High.
"We're all human beings, we all make mistakes," Abdel-Aziz said. "It shouldn't end his career, and he should have to apologize publicly, like he did."
Incredibly sorry & embarrassed for the ref incident. Will never happen again.— Marcelino Evil (@KCBanditMMA) June 8, 2014
In addition to cutting High, the UFC famously released welterweight Paul Daley after the British fighter sucker-punched Josh Koscheck following their UFC 113 encounter.
Sefo commented on this, saying that the UFC had to set an example in that situation and asserting that the WSOF would do the same.
"There's been incidents that happened in the UFC that, obviously, they were setting an example and they wouldn't tolerate that," Sefo said. "And neither would we....We wouldn't tolerate anybody putting their hands on the ref."
High, who spent most of his career at welterweight, dropped to lightweight for his most recent fight against Dos Anjos, and "The Kansas City Bandit" would instantly become a contender in either division should he join the WSOF's roster.
Currently, the WSOF's welterweight title belongs to former UFC fighter Rousimar Palhares, while the promotion's lightweight strap will be contested July 5, as the undefeated 155-pound champion Justin Gaethje takes on challenger Nick Newell (11-0).
What do you think of Sefo's and Abdel-Aziz's comments? Should the WSOF take a gamble with High? If so, who should he face in his first fight under the WSOF banner?