Daniel Straus handed Pat Curran a loss on Nov. 2, 2013 at Bellator 106 via lopsided decision.
Now that the mixed martial arts (MMA) world knows Curran will receive an immediate rematch at Bellator 112, many have wondered why the former featherweight kingpin is getting another shot at the strap before the winner of season nine's "toughest tournament in sports," Patricio "Pitbull" Freire.
Their boss has the answer.
During a conference call previewing the upcoming tenth installment of Bellator MMA, promotion president Bjorn Rebney discussed why he made the decision to go with the trilogy instead of selecting the man who rightfully earned his spot by defeating Justin Wilcox.
“I've got to analyze everything. I had to weigh and balance the power of the trilogy, I had to look at their first fight, Pat knocked out Daniel, and in the second fight Daniel ground out the W. As I look at those two guys and I look at Pitbull, I see, in my mind, and we can debate this stuff until we’re blue in the face, but I see, in Straus and Curran, two of the top five or six featherweights on the face of the Earth. So to have the opportunity to settle this once and for all, to have a legitimate trilogy fight between one guy who has won by knockout and guy who, in typical Daniel fashion, ground out a victory, it’s a good opportunity. And I’ve got to weigh and balance the Pitbull issue as well.”
With the announcement of Eddie Alvarez vs. Michael Chandler 3 going down on pay-per-view (PPV), the decision to go with a third fight in the featherweight division makes sense. But to keep someone like "Pitbull" out of action in favor of going back to a bout that was recently decisive in nature, not so much.
"'Pitbull' fought for us five times on Spike in 2013. He’s a world-class fighter as well.To be super clear, Pitbull hasn’t lost his world title fight. Pitbull will get his world title fight. He’s just going to get it this spring against the winner of Straus vs. Curran when we finalize that trilogy.”
Here's hoping that Straus vs. Curran part three is more like "Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King" and less like "Star Wars: The Return of the Jedi."
Stay ready "Pitbull."