James Gallagher gets next opponent and it's one who few expected
This is a surprise.
Strabane's James Gallagher's next fight has just been announced and it has definitely taken some people by surprise.
There has been plenty of speculation since Gallagher won his sixth professional bout at Bellator 173 in Belfast last month.
The 'Strabanimal' won that fight against Kirill Medvedovsky with ease after ending the fight with his almost patented rear-naked choke.
Bellator have been building up Gallagher slowly as they see incredible potential in the 20-year-old and he will now face off against Chinzo Machida - the older brother of former UFC light heavyweight champion, Lyoto Machida.
As @ScottCoker announced on #TheMMAHour, @StrabanimalMMA takes on @chinzoapam at #Bellator180! pic.twitter.com/mtKhsDyh9f
— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) March 27, 2017
The news was announced by Scott Coker on The MMA Hour and people are definitely excited about what should be a very interesting match-up.
James Gallagher vs. Chinzo Machida is a strange fight. But the good kind of strange. #Bellator180
— Darragh Murphy (@DarrMurphy) March 27, 2017
A lot of people were expecting him to fight AJ McKee or Aaron Pico but the Machida fight is an interesting one nonetheless.
thought they would do A.J. McKee against James Gallagher but i like the one that just got announced. #BellatorNYC
— jluis ⚉ (@mma21plus) March 27, 2017
This is a huge fight for James Gallagher and kind of surprising. Was looking forward to the Mckee fight but excited nonetheless.#Bellator180 https://t.co/iHgxIuQHIN
— Aid O'Connor (@AidOConnor) March 27, 2017
An honor to face someone from the legendary Machida family. See you soon New York pic.twitter.com/FolTcHdWY7
— Coach JK (@John_Kavanagh) March 27, 2017
Gallagher will face Machida at the Madison Square Garden on June 24 and if he wins this fight, then the hype surrounding this young man will only grow.
He's certainly excited about it anyway if his latest Instagram post is anything to go by.
The strabanimal is coming to steal the show @thegarden in NYC. 20 years old fighting in the biggest fight venue in the world. Im honoured to be able to represent my country, my team and my town of Strabane on the biggest show in the world. I'm coming here to steal the show. Thank you to my family and coaches and Bellator! The Irish are coming to New York!! Lets fucking do this. From st pats hall in Strabane to MSG in NY ?????????? #thestrabanima #BT82