Anthony “Rumble” Johnson Leaves UFC, Agrees To Terms With Bellator

Anthony Johnson is on his way to Bellator.

ESPN’s Ariel Helwani reports that Johnson has parted ways with the UFC. He is expected to be a part of the Bellator roster. Johnson is planning to make his return to MMA competition as a light heavyweight.

“Anthony ‘Rumble’ Johnson has mutually parted ways with the UFC and has agreed to terms with Bellator, sources told Ariel Helwani. Johnson is expected to sign his deal imminently and compete as a light heavyweight in the first half of 2021.”

The news comes as a surprise to some but in hindsight, perhaps UFC President Dana White hinted at something being amiss. More recently, the UFC boss told reporters that he hadn’t heard from Johnson’s team since he announced comeback plans. White went as far as to say Johnson “sort of disappeared again.”

Bellator President Scott Coker was quick to post the following on social media.

“Rumble” hasn’t competed since April 8, 2017. Johnson was submitted by Daniel Cormier in their rematch. This was Johnson’s second failed bid at the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship. After the fight, Johnson announced his retirement.

Over time, “Rumble” teased making a return to action. At first, Johnson had plans of returning in the heavyweight division. Ultimately, he’s decided to stick with 205 pounds.

ESPN’s Brett Okamoto later said that eventually, Johnson would like to dabble in both the light heavyweight and heavyweight divisions.

Unexpected move, and a big signing for Bellator. I’m told Rumble intends to compete at both heavyweight and light heavyweight.”

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