Saturday was supposed to settle the age-old dispute of how a high-level boxer would do against a high-level mixed martial artist, when former world champion boxer Ricardo "El Matador" Mayorga was set to make his MMA debut against former UFC star Din "Dinyero" Thomas.
However, notorious boxing promoter Don King had other plans. In the final days leading up to the event, King filed for an injunction to prevent Mayorga from participating in the event, which had been promoted for months. King claimed that Mayorga, who signed an exclusive promotional contract with Don King Promotions (DKP) last fall for boxing, was in breach of contract for participating on the Shine Fights promotion.
Shine Fights disputed those claims, stating that Mayorga’s contract with DKP was for boxing and it did not apply to mixed martial arts. Judge Marc Gold of Broward County, Florida granted the injunction on Saturday, only a few hours before the fight was set to take place in Fayetteville, North Carolina.
Late Friday night, after all of the fighters had weighed-in, Shine Fights was confident the fight and show would go on, stating on their Twitter account that: "A lot of people tried to stop Mayorga vs. Thomas from happening" … "not going to happen." The following day, Shine Fights officials conceded defeat in the matter, after the judges ruling, and Mayorga was pulled off the card.
Shine Fights would later release the following statement via Twitter: "To all of the fans who were looking forward to Shine 3 we are very sorry with the out come of the ruling with the judge. We hope that you have faith in our company and understand that we did everything in our power to make this fight happen. Don King had a plan to ruin our show and he was able to get that done by bringing 1,000,000.00 in cash to the court room."
DKP’s attorney Anthony Brito offered his own take on the matter by issuing the following statement: "The court found that Mayorga is not a legitimate mixed martial artist and that Shine was not legitimately promoting him as one for this event, and that the only reason anyone was attending this ‘Worlds Collide’ event was to see how Mayorga fared as a boxer against an MMA fighter."
After being forced to remove Mayorga from the card later Saturday afternoon, it was then reported that Shine Fights was going to have Murilo "Ninja" Rua vs. David Heath headline the PPV event on Saturday night. However, the North Carolina commission would soon axe the entire event, which was also set to feature the MMA debut of 2009 ADCC absolute and divisional champion Braulio Estima vs. Olympic judoka Rick Hawn, as well as UWC champion Jamal Patterson vs. ADCC veteran Alexandre "Cacareco" Ferreira.