World Extreme Cagefighting has added yet another world class competitor to its featherweight ranks. The promotion has officially inked former AFL fighter Rafael Assuncao, who is 12-1 overall and currently in the midst of a four fight win streak.
The news was first reported by his manager Malki Kawa of First Round Management to MMAjunkie.com.
The WEC wasn’t the only organization interested in Assuncao’s services, as he was heavily recruited by the Bellator Fighting Championships to take part in their eight man tournament.
Apparently Assuncao developed a close relationship with WEC matchmaker Sean Shelby and that was enough to steer him towards the WEC. Kawa stated that although Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney was a “great guy” and he believes that Bellator will grow into an outstanding organization, Assuncao felt more at home with the Zuffa-owned promotion.
Assuncao has ended 10 of his 12 victories by either submission or knock out and trains with WEC featherweight champion Mike Thomas Brown at America Top Team. In spite of his desire to challenge for a title, Assuncao has already said that he would not fight his teammate under any circumstances. A
He joins a loaded 145 pound division that features Urijah Faber, Leonard Garcia, Jose Aldo, Wagnney Fabiano and others.
Assuncao had requested and received his release from the AFL recently due to the organization being in a “holding patter” as a result of a sagging the economy.
The 27-year old is generally regarded as a top 10-15 fighter and is expected to make his debut for the promotion sometime this spring. The brother of former UFC lightweight Junior Assuncao, he holds notable wins over the UFC’s Joe Lauzon as well as the WEC’s Jeff Curran.