Eddie Alvarez rolled the dice in a big way prior to his rematch against Dustin Poirier at UFC on FOX 30 a few weeks ago, as “The Underground King” didn’t sign an extension with Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) prior to competing in the final fight of his deal.
Unfortunately for Alvarez, he was knocked out by “The Diamond” in the thrilling do-over (highlights), which cost Alvarez plenty of leverage at the negotiating table. While there is still a possibility he will re-sign with UFC, there’s just a big a chance Eddie returns to Bellator MMA.
And Scott Coker isn’t opposed to the idea.
“I don’t think we’ve talked to Eddie, but listen, if he wants to reach out and have a conversation and he’s truly a free agent and we’re not interfering in anybody’s contract, we would love to talk to him,” Coker said on a recent edition of The MMA Hour (via MMA Fighting). “I think the guy has done a lot of good work in building his brand here in the U.S,” he added.
“Obviously, he’s had some great fights with Michael Chandler here in the past. We want to talk to every free agent out there that’s a big star, and I think Eddie is still a big star.”
Before joining UFC back in 2014 after an ugly split with Bellator — which was then being spearheaded by Bjorn Rebney — Eddie became a household name with the promotion, winning the Lightweight title in 2009. He eventually fought for the promotion 10 times, enjoying massive success during his stint.
He then left the promotion as the 155 champion to join UFC, with whom he’s competed for over the last four years. As far as Dana White is concerned, Alvarez is free to talk with whoever he wants, which could lead him back to his old home.
For Coker, landing a heavy-hitter like Alvarez would be a huge score in a rather tepid free agent market.
“There’s somebody here, there’s somebody there,” Coker said. “It’s not like there’s hundreds or even 10s and 20s of athletes. It’s more of, there’s a big star here or a big star here or a medium star there. But they’re out there and we’ve been plucking them away one by one. And we’re gonna keep shopping and we’re gonna keep growing this roster,” he added.
“This roster looks nothing like it did four years ago,” Coker said. “It’s a much different fight roster than we had. It’s something we’re proud of and it’s not easy to do. But I think we’ve got a good handle on it.”
Coker has managed to draw away plenty of UFC free agents such as Gegard Mousasi and Rory MacDonald, just to name a few. Anyone think he can lure Alvarez back?