Mike Rhodes replaces Leandro Silva, faces Brandon Thatch in RFA 7 headliner


brandon-thatch.jpgA leg infection has forced Leandro Silva out of a planned headlining contest at this month’s Resurrection Fighting Alliance 7 event, and undefeated Roufusport fighter Mike Rhodes (4-0) has agreed to replace him against Brandon Thatch (8-1).

RFA officials today announced the change.

“Brandon Thatch is the hometown hero, while Rhodes and Silva are both relatively unknown in the area,” RFA President Ed Soares stated. “However, you know what kind of fighters you get from Duke Roufus. It’s unfortunate what happened to Silva, but at the end of the day styles make fights, and Thatch vs. Rhodes will be a very exciting and explosive main event at RFA 7.”

RFA 7 takes place March 22 at 1STBANK Center in Broomfield, Colo. The evening’s main card airs live in North America on AXS TV.

Colorado native “Rukus” Thatch fights in his home state while looking for eighth straight win via stoppage. In fact, Thatch’s only career loss came via split decision at a 2008 Strikeforce show.

Thatch has recently been training alongside UFC 158 headliner Georges St-Pierre at Canada’s famed Tristar Gym before recently returning to Colorado’s Grudge Training Center to finish off his preparation. He insists the late opponent switch doesn’t present any special challenges.

“I’m here to fight anyone the RFA puts in front of me,” Thatch stated. “This is what we do, and what we’re here for. I don’t know much about Rhodes yet, but I hear he’s a tough guy and I know he’s from a great camp. I’m ready for war at RFA 7,” Thatch explained.

Meanwhile, Rhodes made his professional debut in May 2012 and has quickly rattled off four straight wins to open his career. Three of those victories came via stoppage, including two first-round endings.

Rhodes said he’s thrilled for his first headlining opportunity.

“When Duke called and told me about the opportunity to fight for the RFA and the opponent being Thatch, I was very excited,” Rhodes said. “He’s a great fighter and very talented everywhere.

“This is the test I’ve been looking for. I believe I belong in the cage with the best and a win over Brandon will prove that. He is definitely the biggest test, and this is the biggest fight of my young career.”

The latest RFA 7 card includes:

  • Mike Rhodes vs. Brandon Thatch
  • Jeremy Kimball vs. Chidi Njokuani
  • Matt Manzanares vs. Sergio Pettis
  • Mirsad Bektic vs. Nick Macias
  • Carl Postma vs. Leandro Veal

For more on RFA 7, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

(Pictured: Brandon Thatch)

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