Ryan Bader made history last night (Sat., Jan. 26, 2019) by becoming Bellator MMA’s first-ever champ-champ following his 35-second knockout win over longtime great, Fedor Emelianenko, in the main event of Bellator 214.
Full video highlights here.
Bader — the current Light Heavyweight champion for Bellator — not only won the Heavyweight Grand Prix, but also claimed the vacant 265-pound strap, leaving The Forum in Los Angeles with all the belts.
Naturally, talks of a fight against another former champ-champ, Daniel Cormier, arose during the post-fight presser. And though “Darth” did at one time have some beef with “DC” and interest in a fight when they were both under the UFC banner, he isn’t dwelling over it so much now.
“I’m over that,” Bader said via MMA Fighting. “But he’s one of those guys, he proves himself over and over again. He’s a champ, in and out of the cage there, beating monsters. Nothing but respect from over here.”
Despite their past history, the feeling is mutual. Still, Ryan won’t completely say no if the opportunity arose for the two men to finally throw down.
“It’d be fun to do a cross-promotion for the champ -champ-champ-champ, but we’ll see if that ever happens.”
A cross-promotion fight between UFC and Bellator is highly-unlikely. That said, Cormier is set to retire from the sport this year, and though he will continue his broadcast career with the promotion, there is always a slim chance he could get the itch to fight again in a few years.
That said, in a fantasy world, how does a fight between these two talented champions play out?