Jared Hess will compete in Bellator’s Season 5 middleweight tournament. | Photo: Dave Mandel
“The knee is doing great,” Hess told Sherdog.com. “It was and LCL injury. They replaced it with a cadaver.”
Hess (11-2-1) submitted Chris Bell with a triangle choke upon his return to the cage at Bellator 42 in April, but the 27-year-old Oklahoma City native still feels the sting of his loss to Shlemenko in the Season 2 tournament semifinals.
“I want Shlemenko,” he said. “I’m gonna tell [Bellator CEO] Bjorn [Rebney] that I want Shlemenko.”
The injury, of course, was not part of Hess’ plan. He graduated from college with no thought of a 9-to-5 job. Instead, Hess immediately began training to fight.
“I graduated with an industrial safety major and a minor in criminal justice,” he said. “I was going to be a police officer. It’s a great career and a lot of my friends were doing it, but I didn’t really want to do it. Once I finished school, I really didn’t want to go to work, so I started training and fighting.”
The strategy has worked well for Hess, who signed with Bellator and advanced to the promotion’s first middleweight tournament final in June 2009. There, a fourth-round doctor’s stoppage ended his run and made Hector Lombard a champion. Back-to-back wins over Keith Johnson and former International Fight League champion Ryan McGivern followed, setting up his ill-fated duel with Shlemenko.
Hess will enter the Season 5 middleweight tournament with a quarterfinal bout against WEC veteran Bryan Baker at Bellator 50 on Saturday at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Fla. A victory there could put him in position to face Shlemenko again. Hess also wants a second crack at Lombard, the only other man to defeat him.
“I was going in there trying to take him down [the first time we fought],” Hess said. “It just ended up not working out. I had never fought a guy like Hector. He reminds me of a mini-Mike Tyson.”view original article >>
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