The two biggest promoters in MMA have clashed before and they are at it again.
Bellator President Scott Coker called out UFC President Dana White for comments he made about ex-UFC fighters.
Last month, a debate was initiated that involved fans, media, and promoters after Coker declared Bellator’s light heavyweight division as the best in the world.
Claiming it to be superior to the UFC’s light heavyweight division.
Dana White responded laughing and called Coker “cute” for making such an amusing statement.
White claimed the majority of Bellator’s light heavyweight division was let go by the UFC.
Coker disagreed. “We do have the best 205-pound division on the planet, bar none,” Coker told reporters.
“When you think about the fighters that we have, tonight, Phil and Machida, then you have (Vadim) Nemkov. I think Gegard (Mousasi) will eventually move up to 205 because he told me he wants to move up to 205. … That group has become a really healthy, robust division for us.
“Ryan Bader and Phil Davis, or anyone that’s come over from the UFC, they’ve come over in free agency. It’s not that they come over here just because they got kicked out. That’s a lie. The truth is they were free agents and they wanted to shop their (worth) and we offered them a better deal so they came over here. These guys are prizefighters. This is not something they do just for fun. These are athletes of the highest level and they are prizefighters. If can come here and you’re going to get a better deal, why wouldn’t you come to Bellator? If you have a better deal there, then stay there and do your thing. As far as being kicked out of certain organizations, that’s a lie.”
Coker didn’t appear to want to escalate the situation further or get into a war or words. He is focused on running his promotion.
“Look, he’s doing his thing and we’re doing our thing,” Coker said. “It is what it is and you know how he is. We’re going to continue down the path and keep doing our thing and at least he didn’t say I was ugly.”
Coker is certain about one thing, Bellator is quickly establishing itself as an MMA promotion household name.
“This organization is growing and this organization has resources,” Coker said. “You can see with the move to CBS Sports Network and there will be other opportunities for us inside the family of platforms here at this company. To me, we’re going to make the right decisions and keep growing the brand with fighters. We’re a very good star identifier and I think we’re the best at identifying new stars and building new stars and that’s what we’re going to continue to do. Every day when I wake up, we’re not thinking about those guys. We’re thinking about what we’re doing and focused how we want to grow this product.”