Bellator MMA recently announced that it would stage a Light Heavyweight Grand Prix in 2021, pitting eight of the best 205-pound fighters on the roster against each other. Among the matchups announced was one that will see Yoel Romero face off against Anthony Johnson at Bellator 257 on April 16, 2021.
Before then, however, the promotion will stage Bellator 256 on April 9, 2021, which will see former division champion, Ryan Bader, face off against Lyoto Machida in an opening round bout. Machida knocked out Bader in 2012 under the UFC banner shortly after losing to Jon Jones, so he is looking to go up 2-0 on “Darth.”
After his stint in UFC, Bader went on to become the Bellator MMA “champ-champ” by winning not only the Light Heavyweight belt, but the Heavyweight strap, too. Now, he will look to become the first fighter to win back-to-back Grand Prix’s for the Viacom-owned promotion.
Also announced for Bellator 257 on April 16 was a rematch pitting current Bellator 205-pound champion, Vadim Nemkov, against Phil Davis, while Corey Anderson will face Dovletdzhan Yohshimuradov at Bellator 256 on April 9.
Here is a look at the opening round match ups:
The winner will not only win the title, but a $1 million prize.