Bellator’s Scott Coker Reports Interim Heavyweight Title “Likely”
By FCF Staff
Now that Ryan Bader will be competing in the semifinals of Bellator’s light heavyweight grand prix, it looks like the promotion will be putting an interim, heavyweight title on the line.
Bellator advanced in the tournament on Friday night at Bellator 256, by outscoring Lyoto Machida for the decision win. The heavyweight champ will take on the winner of the Corey Anderson – Dovletdzhan Yagshimuradov semifinal bout, which will take place next Friday at Bellator 257.
Bader hasn’t defended the heavyweight title now since September 2019, when his bout with Cheick Kongo was declared a no-contest (the latter couldn’t continue after incurring an accidental eye poke). As a result, Bellator President Scott Coker was asked about the status of the heavyweight title, following Bellator 256, and he said this.
“Ryan is obviously going to move forward in the tournament now,” Coker said. “We’re most likely going to put together an interim title, which we’ll have something to announce in a couple of weeks. Maybe by even next week’s event, we’ll have something to announce. But I think we’re going to be heading in that direction now.”
The 37-year-old Bader (28-6, 1 NC) lost the light heavyweight title to Vadim Nemkov last August, who stopped him in round two.