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Old 08-14-2009, 03:36 PM
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Default Erin Toughill Speaks Up


With womenís MMA about to take its biggest step forward, one of the original pioneers of the movement will be sitting on the sidelines watching, but not by her choice.

Earlier this year Erin Toughill had been announced to participate on the undercard to Saturday nightís Strikeforce card, with the belief that she would step into the eveningís main event featuring Gina Carano and Cris ďCyborgĒ Santos should one of them be forced to withdraw.

Alas, it never came to fruition.

As Toughill herself told MMAWeekly, her non-participation in Saturdayís historic event was the culmination of a series of events gone awry, leading her to sever ties with her management company and now wait for her time to eventually come.


MMAWeekly: First off Erin, explain to our readers why you are not part of this weekendís Strikeforce event.

Erin Toughill: First thing what I think people need to understand, as far as Iím concerned or any other top fighter is concerned, if youíre going to fight, youíd like to have a contract. I never ever received one.

Back in late May when they started pumping the Cyborg/Gina fight, Ginaís people were having problems finalizing the contract. (Strikeforce promoter Scott) Coker had asked me at that point if I wanted to take a fight with Cyborg and I said yes. Right around the beginning of June they announced that they (Cyborg and Carano) were going to fight.

I was told from that point on that either way I was on the card, even if I didnít go in Ginaís place. And then they also said if they couldnít find an opponent, I would be a back-up (for the main event). I agreed to both of those things. About the end of June/beginning of July, I left for training camp out in Las Vegas. That whole time I was out here, I was going on the word of my agent (that I would receive my contract). I never got a contract for either (scenario).

MMAWeekly: What ended up happening with your agent?

Erin Toughill: At the end of July I terminated my agent, Ken Pavia of MMA Agents. I was just beyondÖ I canít even say the word for how upset I was. We just couldnít get the ball rolling and now Iím in the middle of cutting ties with them completely. I have talked to Strikeforce personally, my lawyer has spoken to them, they want me and things are going to get done, it just happens that it wonít be on August 15.

MMAWeekly: What is your current managerial status?

Erin Toughill: I wonít say Iím sealed with anybody, because Iím not. I havenít had anyone come and court me while Iíve been under contract, nobody has done that. I have gone on my own accord and spoken to people that are pretty powerful and have big influence in this sport and with Strikeforce right now.

Ken Pavia and MMA Agents are not allowed to do any business on my behalf. My lawyer right now is gonna deal with that stuff, and hopefully settle it as amicably and professionally as possible. Iím not here to slam them, thatís not my thing, but I will speak up about what things went down. Strikeforce isnít culpable for anything. I really say my agent dropped the ball on a lot of things and put me in a really precarious situation.

MMAWeekly: To clear up another misconception, I understand there was never an opponent named to fight you on the show.

Erin Toughill: Before even the contract stuff took place, we had like four or five girls turn it down. I donít want to name names, but some of them were top