UFC may regret treatment of star following rival's announcement
Bellator have something that the UFC could really do with.
Compare the welterweight division of the UFC with that of Bellator MMA. The bigger organisation may trump their rivals in terms of sheer numbers and name recognition, but one could argue that Bellator's 170 lb weight class is in better shape.
For one, recent Bellator welterweight title fights haven't been considered all that 'boring' by fans. The same cannot be said of the UFC.
Dana White tore Tyron Woodley to shreds over his decision win against Demian Maia in his last outing and the champion's rematch against Stephen Thompson was described by UFC analyst Dan Hardy as 'the worst welterweight title fight (he has) ever seen."
While the UFC boasts a huge amount of talent, it's difficult to find a top-ranked fighter who is available, has proved they can hang with the elite of the division and hasn't lost to the current king.
An unexpected return https://t.co/4or3y7Ruxh
— SportsJOE (@SportsJOEdotie) September 20, 2017
This isn't a problem Bellator has, as they have plenty of potential challengers to Douglas Lima's throne. The Brazilian has won 11 of his 13 fights for the promotion and has already levelled the score with Andrey Koreshkov. Unfortunately, a chance to exact revenge on Ben Askren seems extremely unlikely, as the undefeated ONE FC champion plans on retiring after his next bout.
Lima proved he would likely be a top-tier UFC fighter after defeating Lorenz Larkin, who was ranked in the top 10 when he left the UFC, in his last defence. He will have a chance to make the case for being the world's number one with his next trip to the cage as he has been matched up against the last man to beat Woodley.
Bellator have confirmed that Rory MacDonald, who outclassed 'The Chosen One' over three rounds in 2014, will get his crack at the coveted strap on January 20 at The Forum in California. The Red King earned his shot after finishing Paul Daley in his promotional debut in May. 9-4 run under the UFC banner between 2010 and 2016.
MacDonald famously said that the UFC 'didn't pay (him) enough' after switching to Bellator in a high-profile move. He went 9-4 run under the UFC banner scoring memorable victories over Nate Diaz, Demian Maia, BJ Penn, Tarec Saffiedine and of course, Woodley.